Queens, NY – New York City Mayor Eric Adams outlined what he called a “Working People’s Agenda” in his second State of the City address, delivered at the Queens Theatre in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park on January 26, 2023. The Mayor touched on four components what he said were essential in building a city that meets the needs of working New Yorkers: jobs, safety, housing, and care.
“Without a strong working class, this city cannot survive. That’s why, today, I’ve outlined how we plan to build a city for working people, one that is more affordable, safer, cleaner, and more livable,” said Mayor Adams. “You need good jobs and pathways to get those jobs, and those jobs need to be able to support a home for you and a family. You need to be safer, and you need care — not just in crisis but throughout your lives. These are the things that our administration is working for every day to sustain the workers who make this city possible and build a better city for all.”
New York City has added more than 200,000 new jobs over the last year, with the city’s job growth outpacing both the state and the rest of the nation. But that progress masks a harsh, unequal reality: The unemployment rate for Black New Yorkers is more than three times the rate for white New Yorkers. Mayor Adams’ said that his Working People’s Agenda will ensure that all New Yorkers have access to family-sustaining jobs with good pay and benefits. Mayor Adams said he plans to launch a new Apprenticeship Accelerator to connect 30,000 New Yorkers to apprenticeships by 2030. The Accelerator will track all forms of apprenticeship from youth to adults in the workforce — also providing technical assistance to support the expansion of apprenticeship programs by employers, training providers, educational institutions, and labor unions.
SAFETY AND QUALITY OF LIFE
The Adams administration will work to get ‘New York’s Most Wanted’ — roughly 1,700 known offenders responsible for a disproportionate amount of the city’s violent crime — off the streets. That means working with Albany on targeted, evidence-based solutions to this crisis and changes to state law to ensure that defendants receive the speedy trial that the Constitution guarantees, that victims and their families are provided justice in a timely manner, and that district attorneys and public defenders have the resources to hire more attorneys and paralegals to remove the bottleneck in the courts while simultaneously investing in technology. The administration will also work to address the overly complex and burdensome discovery process that is consuming innocent people with bureaucracy without getting dangerous people off the streets or providing closure for victims.
Building on the mayor’s “Get Stuff Built” plan and his goal to meet the need for 500,000 new homes across the city, the Adams administration will work with New York City Councilmembers Erik Bottcher, Keith Powers, and Kamillah Hanks to kick off two major community planning processes. In the coming weeks, community engagement will begin with the goals of creating more housing, including rent-restricted housing — in Midtown Manhattan where current zoning only allows for manufacturing and office space, as well as on the North Shore of Staten Island where the administration will pursue expanded waterfront access and flood resiliency, job creation, and mixed-use development.
The administration will assist New Yorkers to stay in their homes by investing $22 million in tenant protection programs to provide more staff dedicated to investigating and enforcing against bad landlords and protect tenants from being pushed out of rent-regulated apartments.
New York City’s ability to care was put to the test by an asylum seeker crisis. New Yorkers rose to the occasion, and the Adams administration has provided shelter, food, health care, education, legal support, and a host of other services to the more than 42,000 asylum seekers that have arrived in New York City since last spring. Mayor Adams will undertake an historic effort to provide health care for New Yorkers experiencing homelessness. The administration will work with its federal partners to allow homeless New Yorkers to become eligible for free, comprehensive health care services through a specialized network of dedicated providers and care management.
“City government must work to improve the public good, support an economy that works for all, and care for the working people who make it possible. Jobs, safety, housing, and care — without these pillars of support, cities crumble, institutions fall, society weakens. We will not allow that to happen in New York. It is the working class that has lifted up this city, built it brick by brick on the bedrock of a free and democratic nation. And, going forward, we will sustain the workers who make this city possible. Working together, we can build a better city for all, keep those pillars of civic power strong, open more golden doors, and inspire others to do the same.”