ACLU Statement on Bloomberg's NYPD Muslim Surveillance Comments

February 27, 2020 9:15 pm

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PBS Newshour tonight released an excerpt of an interview with Mike Bloomberg. In the excerpt, Mr. Bloomberg makes a number of inaccurate and misleading claims about the NYPD’s Muslim surveillance program under his administration, including that “the courts ruled [the surveillance program] was exactly within the law.”

Below is comment from Hina Shamsi, director of the ACLU’s National Security Project, in response:

“This is an insulting attempt to rewrite the history of an unconstitutional surveillance program that left Muslims, particularly in communities of color, devastated. The facts are that the police and city leaders who were supposed to equally protect all our communities instead betrayed them. It took brave Muslims and their supporters to go to court before the NYPD finally agreed to reforms to safeguard communities in New York and beyond. And no court ever said that the NYPD’s discriminatory surveillance program under Bloomberg was lawful.”

Additional information about the ACLU’s lawsuit, filed together with the New York Civil Liberties Union and the CLEAR project at CUNY Law School, can be found here:

The NYPD reformed its surveillance program after that lawsuit and Handschu were settled.

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