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Advocates, Lawmakers Frustrated By Late City Hall Report on Homeless Encampment ‘Sweeps’


City Hall was supposed to begin reporting more details on how it removes homeless New Yorkers from public spaces, sharing data on where each sweep took place, the agencies involved, how many people were affected and the costs. But a month after the first due date, advocates and lawmakers are still waiting.

(Emil Cohen/NYC Council Media Unit) A banner at an August 2023 rally to introduce the sweeps reporting bill.

Before he entered a Manhattan shelter at the end of December, Eduardo Ventura spent several months sleeping outside in the East Village, where he said he was routinely caught up in the city’s longstanding “sweeps” practice—in which staffers from municipal agencies, including the NYPD, clear homeless New Yorkers from public spaces, often discarding their belongings in the process.

“They were sweeping me every day. They used to come and take my property or throw it out,” said Ventura, recounting the loss of his residency card, a laptop and a bike as a result of past sweeps. “Basically, we used to start from scratch, every other day.”

Last month, City Hall was supposed to begin publicly reporting more details on how it carries out these sweeps, sharing data on where each clean-up took place, which agencies were involved, how many people were affected and the costs of such removals.

The new reports are required each quarter under Local Law 34, passed by the City Council late last year. But a month after the first due date, advocates and lawmakers are still waiting.





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