New York City’s Democratic mayor is directing the city to intervene in the lives of residents who are mentally ill.
Mayor Eric Adams announced a new initiative to involuntarily commit mentally ill city residents on Tuesday, according to The New York Times.
Adams identified a “crisis” of “people with severe and untreated mental illness who live out in the open on the streets, on our subways, in danger, and in need” in a City Hall speech touting the new policy.
Adams announced reforms to the standards for city agencies and law enforcement to carry out “involuntary removals” of those deemed mentally ill from public spaces in the speech.
“No more walking by, or looking away,” Adams said of a homeless crisis that has become a black mark for New York City.
“No more passing the buck.”
“If severe mental illness is causing someone to be unsheltered and a danger to themselves, we have a moral obligation to help them get the treatment and care they need.”
Adams pointed to the impacts of mental illness on New York City’s subway system in a Monday speech.
The mayor hailed two NYPD officers who had rescued a man from the subway tracks in his remarks, according to the Times.
“The subway system is not a place for people who need medical and psychiatric assistance,” Adams said, pointing to the incident as justification for getting the city’s homeless out of the subways.
Violent crimes on the subway system have spurred concerns about chronic homelessness inside the system, according to the Times.
Adams’ reforms replace a policy that only enabled the city to commit the mentally ill homeless in situations where they posed an imminent danger to themselves or others, according to the New York Post.
As Mayor, Adams has spoken with a tough approach to crime and urban disorder, at times sounding unlike a Democrat in his willingness to clean up New York City’s streets.
Adams’ reforms come as urban homelessness and blight have stricken many large American cities, particularly on the West Coast.
Homelessness has only worsened in California, even as state and local officials pour billions of dollars into solving a seemingly endless problem.
“The very nature of their illnesses keeps them from realizing they need intervention and support,” Adams said of the city’s homelessness crisis.
“Without that intervention, they remain lost and isolated from society, tormented by delusions and disordered thinking.”
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.