IN PUBLIC SERVICE: ‘I’m Not New To This, I’m True To This.’
Adams Focuses on Five Borough Coalition And Citywide Desire For Service & Change
This year’s mayoral election will determine the course of our city for years to come. Now more than ever, we need someone with the vision and lived experience to lead this city out of this dark period.
New York has been through a lot in the past 15 months. COVID-19 has claimed more than 33,000 of our neighbors’ lives. Hundreds of small businesses have been forced to make cutbacks to stay afloat, or close their doors permanently. 550,000 New Yorkers are still out of a job. Many are facing displacement from their homes. We are also confronting a troubling citywide surge in gun violence, disproportionately concentrated in Black and Brown neighborhoods.
We are at a pivotal moment in our city’s history, and we need leadership that meets this moment. My life of experience shows I’m the right person for the job.
Growing up in South Jamaica, Queens to a single mother, I understood the struggle from a young age. My siblings and I used to carry trash bags full of clothing to school because we were afraid we’d be evicted. At 15, I was arrested with my brother and taken to the 103rd Precinct, where we were viciously beaten by police officers.
Rather than saying, “Woe is me,” I said, “Why not me?” I went into the police department with a clear mission: to fight for change from within. I spent 22 years wearing a bulletproof vest to protect this city, and co-founded an organization called 100 Blacks in Law Enforcement that pushed for more diversity on the force and an end to discriminatory policing.
After retiring from the NYPD at the rank of captain, I traded in the blue uniform for a blue suit. I served in the State Senate for eight years, then was elected to serve as the first Black Brooklyn borough president in 2014.
My entire life has been one of overcoming adversity — from fighting racism in the police department, to lifting myself out of poverty, to seizing control of my own health after being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Now, I want to help New York recover from one of its most challenging periods in history.
We’ll do that by making our city safer, tackling the issue of gun violence through precision policing. We’ll also reform policing to make it more equitable, because justice and safety go hand in hand. We’ll invest in early childhood education to give every kid in this city a shot at a healthy, successful life. We’ll invest in affordable housing for those that need it most. We’ll help our small businesses get back on their feet. We’ll overhaul our city’s bureaucracy to make it more efficient and responsive to people’s needs. And so much more.
Everywhere I’ve gone over the course of this campaign, I meet New Yorkers who are ready for change. Our message is resonating because they know I’m going to fight for them, and they know I’ve spent my life fighting for them. That’s why we have more elected officials, more labor unions, a more diverse donor base, and more volunteers supporting us. We have a five-borough coalition that is only growing stronger each day.
I often say I’m not new to this; I’m true to this. I have called New York home my entire life. I love this city. I protected this city. And now, after a lifetime spent in public service, I’m ready to serve this entire city. And when I am elected as your next mayor, we will bring this city back better than ever before.
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