NYS Breathe Act
Black Freedom Project of NY has adopted a state-level platform and legislative campaign inspired by M4BL’s Federal Breathe Act. The BREATHE Act calls for a “time-bound plan” to close all federal prisons and immigration detention centers. It would also abolish ICE and the Drug Enforcement Administration, ban police departments from using surveillance and military-grade weapons, and reallocate funds from policing and incarceration to social-welfare, health-care, education, and environmental programs. This visionary bill framework divests our taxpayer dollars from brutal and discriminatory policing and invests in a new vision of public safety—a vision that answers the call to defund the police and allows all communities to finally BREATHE free.
Defund The Police
We are partnering with the community to demand that we #DefundNYPD by at least $1 billion in the FY21 expense budget. In addition, we expect NYPD to increase its budget transparency, block increases of any NYPD expense budget lines in FY21, and deny / cancel any new policing-related initiatives.
If these cuts are made, it would represent at least $2,049,255,441 in total policing-related savings that can be redirected to communities. Additionally, the following departments would receive funds that would immediately have impact on individuals and families.
The Black Salon Series
The Black Salon Series was intended to facilitate a process of establishing BFP’s internal political alignment and shared framework around four key ideological pillars, to guide and frame the development of our NYS Breathe Act Platform as well as BFP’s long-term approach to achieving our priorities. Throughout the month of September we hosted a weekly schedule of sessions (2 per topic), with each week focused on one of the four key ideological pillars we identified as vital foundations of our collective work and BFP’s NYS Breathe Act Platform.
Black Community Survey Project
A part of our campaign to pass a New York State Breathe Act and build the capacity of Black organizing across New York State, the Black Freedom Project is developing and deploying a community survey in partnership with Black Love Resists in the Rust (BLRR), Release Aging People in Prison (RAPP), NNLB, All of Us. The survey seeks to understand what we as Black New Yorkers believe keeps us safe and what impacts (changes to material and experiential conditions) NYS Breathe Act policies would have on our communities.