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NY mayor drops case against Caribbean immigrants

Saturday, March 08, 2014    

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NEW YORK, USA (CMC) — New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says his administration will drop a lawsuit against the City Council that sought to block new legislation intended to prevent the police from profiling Caribbean immigrants and other minorities.

The mayor had campaigned on a promise to "end the era of stop-and-frisk policing", an issue which was a very divisive one during the mayoral race last year.

De Blasio said the city has reached an agreement with civil rights lawyers, who argued that the New York Police Department (NYPD) policy violated the rights of minorities.

"We believe in ending the overuse of stop-and-frisk that has unfairly targeted young African-American and Latino men," he said.

The former Michael Bloomberg administration had sought to appeal the August 12 ruling of US federal Judge Shira Scheindlin, which said that the NYPD's use of stop-and-frisk violated the constitutional rights of minorities.

Bloomberg had denounced Scheindlin's ruling, saying it would put the safety of New Yorkers at risk.

But de Blasio said New York City would accept the remedies ordered by Judge Scheindlin, including the appointment of an outside monitor to oversee NYPD reforms.

The agreement also calls for the oversight by the monitor, Peter Zimroth, to last three years rather than no end date, as in Judge Scheindlin's decision.

"We believe these steps will make everyone safer. This will be one city where everyone rises together, where everyone's rights are protected," said de Blasio.

Unions representing police officers have filed their own challenge to the law.

"Our opposition to this legislation has been and continues to be that it penalizes our members and the public rather than addressing bad policies," said Patrick J Lynch, the president of the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association.

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