Topics New York City
Stay Focused
Sign up for our free newsletter, and we'll make sure you never miss a beat.
DCPI chief Tarik Sheppard displays a bike lock retrieved from Columbia University on MSNBC's Morning Joe on May 1, 2024.
Meet the Cops Running the NYPD’s 86-Member Public Relations Team

The police department’s PR team has more than doubled in size in the past two years. Some of its recent hires have histories of dishonesty and misconduct.

Chris Gelardi   ·   May 14, 2024
hands holding yellow camera in a plastic trash bag, press badge visible
NYPD Tackled and Arrested Journalists Covering Latest Encampment Sweep

The journalists said the arrests interfered with their ability to document the police raid at the Fashion Institute of Technology.

Meghnad Bose and Uzma Afreen   ·   May 8, 2024
NYPD officers in front of the City College gates. Protesters drop a Palestinian flag behind them.
On the Ground at the NYPD Raid on the City College Gaza Solidarity Encampment

New York Focus was on the scene as cops shoved, kettled, and chased students at City College, the second campus where the NYPD razed a Gaza solidarity encampment Tuesday.

Chris Gelardi   ·   May 2, 2024
Student protesters gather at Columbia's Hamilton Hall or "Hind's Hall," renamed after Hind Rajab, a six-year-old Palestinian girl who was shot to death with paramedics on an IDF-supplied emergency route. On the right, they hang a banner that says "HIND'S HALL." Protesters sit up high on a facade.
The NYPD Descent on Columbia, Told by Student Journalists

The mayor and the police blamed “outside agitators” for campus protests. Student journalists reported what they saw.

Uzma Afreen, Angelica Ang, Fahima Degia, Mukta Joshi, Arshi Qureshi, Indy Scholtens and Sammy Sussman   ·   May 2, 2024
The outline of New York state, inside a badge, with a cracked effect on top and a blue and red gradient background.
Behind the Badge: In New York City Homeless Shelters, the Same ‘Peace Officers’ Abuse Residents

Previously unreleased disciplinary files expose officers who beat, slap, and pepper spray the residents they’re supposed to protect. Most are back at work within a month.

Sammy Sussman, Annika Grosser and Sanjana Bhambhani   ·   April 15, 2024
New York City Police Department members stand in a line wearing NYPD baseball caps.
New Bill Would Stop Cops From Citing Debunked ‘Excited Delirium’ Syndrome

Referencing a New York Focus story, Assemblymember Jessica González-Rojas introduced legislation to prevent public agencies from naming the medically discredited condition in their reports.

Chris Gelardi   ·   March 19, 2024
People gather outside a stone arch with sign that says "Hospital & Emergency Room" displaying letters A, C, D, F, G, H, and an emergency cross.
Retired Teachers Seek Union Shakeup to Dodge Medicare Advantage

In the New York City teachers union, anger over a plan to privatize retiree health care could send a longshot campaign over the edge.

Sam Mellins   ·   February 26, 2024
A woman in a purple dress and a black head covering opens a door to show a sunny world outside.
Adams Administration Shelter Policy Disproportionately Evicts African Migrants

Migrants from Mauritania and Senegal were the most likely to receive eviction notices, but not the most populous groups in shelters, a New York Focus analysis found.

Churchill Ndonwie   ·   February 15, 2024
A classroom full of students with the teacher's silhouette filled in with pennies.
When Schools Assign Substitutes the Wrong Status, the Error Suppresses Their Pay

Long-term subs stay with the same classes and can serve like full-time teachers. New York City schools misclassify them — so their pay doesn’t reflect that.

Teddy Ostrow   ·   January 31, 2024
In school classroom full of children, a teacher silhouette of a teacher is filled in with microscopic coronaviruses.
In New York City Schools, Substitute Teachers Are Systematically Denied Covid Sick Pay

The state established Covid leave to compensate employees who fell ill during the pandemic. One group of essential workers has been unable to claim it.

Teddy Ostrow   ·   January 29, 2024
Park Slope Neighbors Seek to Block New Apartment Buildings on Industrial Site

A laundry company wants to turn its factory into 13-story apartment buildings, sparking the latest in a series of fierce zoning fights.

Sam Mellins   ·   December 20, 2023
New NYPD officers smile amid blue and white confetti at police academy graduation ceremony.
NYPD Instructs Officers to Tase, Pepper Spray People Experiencing Debunked Syndrome

Police training materials link the discredited “excited delirium syndrome” to synthetic marijuana use.

Chris Gelardi   ·   December 12, 2023
New York’s Ties to Israel Bring the Gaza War Home

Even as experts warn of mass ethnic cleansing in Gaza, New York politicians have remained unwavering in their support for Israel since the Hamas attack. They’ve been less vocal about their state’s ties to the occupation of Palestine.

Chris Gelardi and Julia Rock   ·   October 19, 2023
NYPD Vans in front of the New York County Surrogate's Court at 31 Chambers Street.
Police Discipline Comes Before the Court of Appeals

The state’s top court will settle disputes between Rochester, Syracuse, New York City, and their police unions next week in three cases that could reshape police discipline across the state.

Nathan Porceng   ·   October 13, 2023
Combative Bronx Judge Faces Calls for Removal

Acting Supreme Court Justice Ralph Fabrizio has faced formal complaints for berating and threatening lawyers in more than a dozen incidents.

Sam Mellins and George Joseph   ·   October 6, 2023
Various figures hang up tarps in the rain at Bushwick City Farm.
Amid Autumn Upheaval, New York City Migrants Wonder Where They’ll Go Next

City policies have proven so volatile, even aid workers urged asylum seekers to get out of New York if they can.

Sophie Hurwitz and Sam Mellins   ·   October 3, 2023
Assemblymember Harvey Epstein at a podium
Harvey Epstein Guns for Manhattan Democratic Party Leadership

The assemblymember wants to unseat Nico Minerva, right hand to party boss Keith Wright. The Manhattan Democrats vote on Thursday.

Chris Gelardi   ·   October 2, 2023
Mayor Eric Adams with three correction officers
The Rikers Debate Program Is Slowly Collapsing

A seemingly minor change in access to city jails has made it much harder for a lauded debate course to recruit volunteers.

Sam Mellins   ·   September 29, 2023
Mayor Eric Adams standing with his back to the camera, facing a poster reading "Rikers Island NYCD".
Rikers Programs Suffer After Cuts, Despite Mayor’s Promises

The Adams administration said the city would replace discontinued Rikers courses. “I can say for certain that that’s not true,” one worker told New York Focus.

Sam Mellins   ·   September 28, 2023
NYC Mayor Eric Adams stands at a podium at REBNY gala superimposed over shot of One Bryant Park
Eric Adams Is ‘Getting Stuff Done’ on Climate Law — For the Real Estate Lobby

The mayor is putting New York City’s landmark climate and jobs law in jeopardy, our columnist argues.

Pete Sikora   ·   September 25, 2023
1 2 3 4 5