The NYPD has not released the latest batch of data on its officers’ interactions with the city’s students, an apparent violation of new rules requiring their disclosure.
Those statistics — including arrests, summonses, and use of restraints on students — must be publicly released each quarter under amendments to the Student Safety Act that passed in 2015 and went into effect this year.
“It’s disappointing that the NYPD has had a year to get ready to report this information and hasn’t been able to do so” on time, said Johanna Miller, advocacy director for the New York Civil Liberties Union.
The department did release first quarter numbers (also after the legal deadline) last month. They showed that black and Hispanic students accounted for more than 90 percent of arrests and 93 percent of cases involving restraints, despite making up just 70 percent of the total student population.
The disclosure of those statistics was prompted by amendments to the Student Safety Act, a win for advocates who hoped the data would garner support for reforms to keep students from getting sucked into the criminal justice system. For the first time, under the amended law, the police department was required to include student interactions with regular precinct officers in addition to school safety agents posted in schools, who are also NYPD employees.
But some of the advocates who pushed for the new law say second quarter data from April through June is crucial for providing a more complete picture of how schools are connected to the criminal justice system, especially since only three months’ worth of statistics have been released so far.
“The first quarter showed us what many of us suspected, which is that the NYPD, not just the school safety division, is really involved in a lot of day-to-day activity in schools,” Miller added. “This quarter is important because it’s the best information we’ll have before we start a new school year … If it’s going to be used to inform policy decisions, we’re going to miss that window.”
City law requires students’ interactions with police — ranging from summonses to use of restraints — to be reported and posted online within 30 days of the end of each quarter. That means second quarter data should have been posted by the end of July. At press time, the numbers had not been posted.
Police officials did not respond to a request for the data and for comment, but we will update this post if they do.