NYC business owners told to stop calling cops, solve own problems, days before stabbing of EMT worker

Just two days before a veteran New York EMT lieutenant was fatally stabbed in Astoria as she went for a bite to eat, Queens Councilwoman Tiffany Caban and Assemblyman Zohran Mamdani — two progressive proponents of defunding the police — urged Big Apple business owners to stop “summoning” the cops in the name of “public safety.”

“Wanted to share this Public Safety Resources poster @ZohranKMamdani and my offices collaborated on,” Caban tweeted on Tuesday, Sept. 27. “We’re distributing them to local businesses, so our neighborhood is equipped with better ways of solving problems than simply summoning police every time a challenge arises.”

Rather than call the cops in response to an escalating conflict, the “safety” guide recommends business owners say “no,” “stop,” or “that is not okay.” If the assailant continues “causing harm,” just keep repeating “Have a good day” until he or she either “corrects their behavior or exits.”

If a heroin junkie is ODing in your shop, don’t pick up the phone. Instead, learn how to administer Naloxone.

And if the guy is homeless and out of his mind, call 311 “and request a street outreach team.”

On September 29, Alison Russo-Elling, 61, a 25-year veteran of the New York City Fire Department, was on her way to a nearby deli for a bite to eat when a madman randomly chose her to stab to death, as American Wire reported.

At the time, Russo-Elling, who was serving her city on 9/11, was looking forward to retiring in six months.

She was stabbed more than 20 times.

Responses to Caban’s and Mamdani’s “public safety” suggestions reflected New Yorkers’ frustration with progressive policies.

“At a time when we just lost an FDNY member and crime is still rampant, we should be supporting the police — not pushing them away,” Eric Benaim, CEO, of Modern Space Realty, said, according to the New York Post.

Giana Cerbone, who, as the owner of Manducatis Rustica restaurant in Long Island City, is a business liaison to the 108th police precinct, called the situation a “disgrace.”

“Are you kidding me?!… Who does she want us to call, Ghostbusters?!” she exclaimed.

“Look at the EMS worker who was killed. It’s a disgrace,” she continued. “We have to start working with the police department, not against it. We want to build a community not destroy it and the police have to be part of that.”

According to Curtis Sliwa, founder of the Guardian Angels, telling citizens and merchants to call 311 instead of 911 is “complete insanity.”

“People are going to get hurt,” he said. “People are going to get killed. It takes hours if not days to get a response from calling 311.”

“If someone is having a psychological episode, you have to call the police,” he argued. “When the Guardian Angels engage with a mentally troubled person, we call 911. You’ve got to call the police.”

On Twitter, many echoed the criticism.

“This is anything BUT public safety,” tweeted one user. “How utterly irresponsible.”

“This may be the worst public safety resource I have ever seen,” wrote another.

Professor Peter Moskos, a Princeton and Harvard alum and former Baltimore City Police Officer, heads up John Jay College’s NYPD Executive Master’s Program. He called the resource “bad advice.”

“Not telling 911 of a possible overdose when somebody is overdosing will cause people to die,” he tweeted. “‘Active rescues’ save lives. And telling somebody committing a crime ‘I know you’ is just bad advice.”

“And all this just for because you hate policing,” he continued. “For shame. ‘Have a good day!'”


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