AVP Condemns NYPD Violence Targeting Safety Marshals at “Care, Not Criminalization” March 


AVP strongly condemns the violence the New York City Police Department inflicted upon community safety marshals on May 24 at the “Care, Not Criminalization” march. The event brought together advocates from across the city—including AVP — to call for the City budget to support social services and community-led safety work instead of increased policing. Members of Communities United for Police Reform (CPR), a coalition that AVP has been a member of for more than a decade, modeled community-led safety at the march by creating a security team of trained safety marshals, including LGBTQ+ and racial justice advocates who were present to support marchers.  

The NYPD used aggressive, unnecessary, and violent force against our communities as they harassed the group, which included queer elders and young people who were peacefully protesting. Officers ran into the crowd with scooters, and then violently arrested four safety marshals without provocation. We demand that Mayor Adams, Police Commissioner Sewell, and the City Council condemn this violence by police — the exact reason our communities are rallying for the reallocation of funds from the NYPD budget to organizations doing the work to support our most marginalized communities.  

AVP supports the implementation of community safety practices that follow the lead of community members directly impacted by violence, and the presence of trained safety marshals is one of those best practices. Safety marshals serve to support, observe, and communicate with other leaders at public events. With this violence occurring on the cusp of Pride Month, at a time when the LGBTQ community is being targeted on numerous fronts in our country, AVP calls on the Mayor and the Police Commissioner to condemn the actions of the NYPD officers who harmed our community members and hold them accountable for their violent act. The silence speaks volumes: the safety of our communities is not their priority.