Over 90 Percent of NYC Jaywalking Tickets Issued to Black and Latino Pedestrians

The city’s police force continues its history of disproportionately citing people of color for illegal street crossings.

1 minute read

May 29, 2024, 5:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Three NYPD police officers walking away from camera in Times Square, Manhattan.

charles / Adobe Stock

New York City police officers continue to issue a disproportionately large number of jaywalking tickets to people of color, reports Gersh Kuntzman in Streetsblog NYC.

“Of the 463 summonses for which race was known, 426 summonses, or 92 percent, were written to Blacks or Latinos. Only 27 tickets, or fewer than 6 percent, were issued to people identified as non-Hispanic whites.” Kuntzman notes that Black and Latino residents make up 55 percent of the city’s population, following similar findings in 2019 and 2020. “Whites received 5.9 percent of the tickets even though they are 32 percent of the population.”

Jaywalking isn’t enforced equally across the city, either. “According to the city's database of summonses, only 47 of the city's 77 precincts registered an illegal crossing ticket at all in 2023.” 

A proposed bill that would have legalized crossing outside of crosswalks gained little support in the city council. Across the country, California decriminalized jaywalking in 2022, barring police from issuing citations when a crossing wasn’t ‘truly dangerous.’

Wednesday, May 22, 2024 in StreetsBlog NYC

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