Archives of Rudolph W. Giuliani
MAYOR'S MESSAGE

Mayor's WINS Address
Sunday, February 14, 1999

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A More Responsive and Efficient City Government
by Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani

On Friday I attended the funeral of Amadou Diallo, whose death is a terrible tragedy for his family, his friends, and for the entire City of New York. It is probably the most painful thing imaginable for parents to have to bury their own child, and I know I speak for all New Yorkers when I offer my deepest condolences, my support, and my prayers to Mr. and Mrs. Diallo. This tragedy has shocked and saddened the whole City. We understand the family's anger and frustration. We understand their confusion and their sorrow.

Even at such an emotional time, however, it is important that we do not mislead or create false expectations. The Bronx District Attorney's Office's is investigating the incident; that process must proceed. And while it proceeds, we should all be guided by dignity, patience, and reason.

After such a terrible incident, it is time for the City to come together. It is time for healing. If we understand this, we can all help ensure that justice is done consistent with the facts, and in that way we can all do justice to the memory of Amadou Diallo.

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This week, I presented the Mayor's Management Report, a review of the performance of City agencies over the past year.

Because as a whole the Mayor's Management Report is too long and detailed for the time we have, I'll give you just a few examples that don't always get the attention they deserve.

The incidence of fatal shootings by police officers in 1998 was at its lowest level since 1985, and at its second lowest level in the 26 years statistics have been kept. And though the number of arrests made by police officers continues to increase, the number of shots fired by police officers has decreased by more than 50 percent between 1995 and 1998.

It's important to keep this information in mind and in perspective even in the wake of a terrible tragedy like the one the City has just experienced.

In other areas, the New York City Housing Authority further increased the percentage of working families in housing developments. Our Parks Department continued to make our public spaces cleaner. And in what is, I think, probably the greatest single change for the long-term future of the City, the number of people on welfare continued to decline dramatically last year, dropping to levels not seen since the late 1960s.

Now, we will continue to build on our progress, to honestly assess the effect of our policies and programs, and to move forward to make City government even more effective, efficient, and responsive to the needs of New Yorkers. From Gracie Mansion, this is Mayor Rudy Giuliani.



 

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