On Wednesday, November 4th, before temperatures in NYC dropped to 4 degrees, and the mayor warned people to stay inside unless absolutely necessary, NYC Shut It Down, the group who has been shutting down NYC for victims of police violence every week for over a year, distributed clothes to those who have no option to stay inside, even in arctic weather – the homeless.
On Wednesday, NYC Shut It Down, assisted by the Cargo Bike Collective, transported all of the clothing to Penn Station, one of the last 24-hour public spaces where homeless New Yorkers can stay inside while the temperature dropped.
However, as many of the homeless people in Penn Station told us, they are not allowed to sleep there, and if the NYPD catches them doing so, they throw away their belonging and force them into the streets.
Word spread quickly among those in Penn Station that NYC Shut It Down was stationed outside giving away clothes. Dozens of homeless New Yorkers came out of Penn and found the clothing they needed to replace what the NYPD had destroyed and to add extra layers before the temperatures plummeted this weekend.
In all, NYC Shut It Down helped clothe more than 100 homeless New Yorkers, most of them people of color, before the temperature fell to dangerous lows. The mayor, for his part, instructed New Yorkers to just stay inside, while the NYPD continued to physically force the homeless back into the streets