NYPD Leaves out High-Ranking Hispanics

NYPD Chief of Department Carlos Gómez is leaving, and Mayor Bill de Blasio – via Commissioner James O’Neill – has left the high office without a Hispanic representative.

Chief Carlos Gómez is out, and the mayor is not considering another Hispanic.

By not making a similar replacement, Mayor Bill de Blasio has gone backwards on the progress he made when he appointed Carlos Gómez as police chief.

At press time, it was not known what City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito did or did not do to promote or keep Latinos in the highest ranks of the police department until the end of December.

In recent months, Mark-Viverito had an important role in the reorganization of the department.

De Blasio appointed Gómez after the uproar caused by reports of police abuse against Latino and Black minorities in our neighborhoods courtesy of “stop and frisk.”

This police practice disappeared after thousands of complaints of abuse were made and after a federal court made a decision against it.

In 2007, Latinos were approximately 24 percent of the police department, according to numbers published by Associated Press at the time.

Currently, officers of Hispanic origin are 28 percent of the New York City Police Department (NYPD), reflecting the percentage of that population in the five boroughs.

However, this is not the case in high-ranking or chief positions.

Ydanis speaks up

In light of this situation, Council member Ydanis Rodríguez made a statement regarding the replacement of the chief of the police department: “Chief of Department Carlos Gomez’s retirement leaves a seat open for the future of the department to rise. With his departure, we lose the only Latino in the top three positions of leadership at the NYPD,” said Rodríguez.

He added: “We have overqualified officers in the Latino community that can fulfill this position. The city should appoint a Latino chief of department if we are to further efforts to build a police force reflective of the city and inspire new generations of police officers of diverse backgrounds to plan a lifelong career as one of the city’s finest.”

With the abrupt departure of Chief Gómez, Mayor de Blasio was expected to consider another Latino, but he has ignored the ethnic balance the institution should maintain.

De Blasio, via Commissioner James O’Neill, has appointed police officer Terence Monahan – who is white – to replace Gómez.

Before Gómez, the highest-ranking Latino in the department was Rafael Piñeiro, who was named first deputy commissioner in January 2010.

(…)

It is a cause for concern that a force estimated to be 28 to 30 percent Hispanic or Latino lacks a solid representation of Latinos and African Americans among its chiefs.

Worse yet, that Chief Gómez is not being replaced with another Hispanic when there are no other Hispanic/Latinos in high-ranking seats in the NYPD at the moment.

If this is not discriminatory, then it is a serious political mistake and one that is detrimental to the police.

2 Comments

  1. Teddy Higer-Paris says:

    This article has a number of inaccuracies.

    Carlos Gomez is the NYPD Chief of Department, not the “Police Chief.”
    The leader of the NYPD is the police commissioner. He is James O’Neill.
    It is not Mayor De Blaiso’s job to replace Chief Gomez. The mayor is not tasked with replacing the NYPD Chief of Department, the Police Commissioner is.

    No final decision has been made regarding Gomez’s replacement.

  2. Teddy Higer-Paris says:

    De Blasio also did not appoint Chief Gomez in the first place, the Police Commissioner, James O’Neill did.

    Whoever wrote and/or fact-checked this article did a poor job.

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