Liberal New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio just removed the last NYPD officers from the city’s schools to save money. Now, he’s getting hit with one question from a fed-up high school student that you don’t want to miss.
According to Daily Caller, the ultra-liberal Mayor of New York City has successfully removed the last of the NYPD officers stationed at public schools within the city in an effort to save money under a wildly unpopular program. Despite last month’s mass shooting in Parkland, Florida, which resulted in 17 innocent people losing their lives, de Blasio is recklessly plodding ahead with his program to replace armed cops with unarmed security personnel.
The NYPD removed Sgt. Raul Espinet from Francis Lewis High School in Fresh Meadows, Queens. Espinet had reportedly worked at the high school for more than a decade, where teachers, parents, and students loved him and looked to him for safety.
“My colleagues think it’s outrageous — and really stupid,” teacher Arthur Goldstein exclaimed. “We’re not enthusiastic about arming teachers, but we liked having a cop around.”
Instead of having cops inside New York City schools full time, Mayor de Blasio is instituting new community policing units which will visit schools while policing the surrounding neighborhoods. The armed officers are being replaced with school safety agents who are unarmed and just as vulnerable to attack as the students and teachers.
Francis Lewis High School is one of the biggest in the city with a student population of over 4,400. Nearby Bayside and Benjamin Cardozo high schools were also on de Blasio’s hit list and had their armed NYPD officers also removed recently, according to The Blaze.
In an attempt to explain the policy change, Lt. John Grimpel, an NYPD spokesman, said, “I’m not aware of any other school with a full-time police officer assigned to it.” Parents of students at Francis Lewis are outraged at the move and have demanded that Mayor de Blasio reinstate Officer Espinet to his post.
“The community officer is in no way an acceptable replacement,” says a PTA petition started last week. NYPD and the city Department of Education have received a demand from the PTA to bring back an armed officer to Francis Lewis and has collected over 1,000 signatures in only two days, according to PTA co-president Linda Lovett.
“It’s ridiculous,” Lovett exclaimed. “All over the country they are telling you ‘arm the teachers, get an officer in your school.’ New York City had a designated officer and they are actually cutting the program . . . they are making us less secure. You are talking about 5,000 people in a one-block radius, and you’re telling me you can’t designate one officer?” Lovett asked.
According to students who attend the school and their parents, fights are rare and people are generally not concerned about school violence, but the recent school shooting in Florida has caused a lot of concern over school security. One student, in particular, had one question that I think Mayor de Blasio should answer.
“There are school shootings everywhere, and they took the one armed officer away from a school with 4,000 kids in it,” said sophomore Josephine Li. “Who is there to protect us?”
Staten Island City Councilmen Joe Borelli, Steven Matteo, and Borough President James Oddo have requested for de Blasio to place an armed officer in all of the city’s 1,700 schools. De Blasio’s only response has been that it would cost too much.
After Officer Espinet was reassigned, Councilman Matteo made a plea to the mayor’s office. “I hope the NYPD and the administration listens to parents and students in the Fresh Meadows community and allows this officer to stay where he has obviously had such a positive impact,” he said.
“Sadly, we live in a world where horrific attacks on our children have become a regular occurrence, but fortunately we also have the greatest police department in the world to protect us,” Matteo added. Unfortunately, they also have a mayor who will take away the NYPD’s ability to protect its most vulnerable population.
I could not agree more with the people of New York City. Each school should have an armed officer, and if their liberal mayor would cut some of the expensive programs for illegal immigrants, there would be plenty of resources to cover the cost. Voters in New York City should remember this grievance when Bill de Blasio is up for re-election.