Aug. 19, 2021 By Allie Griffin
Astoria Assembly Member Zohran Mamdani was arrested while protesting in Brooklyn Tuesday to demand the state extend the eviction moratorium.
Mamdani was one of 17 protesters arrested for disorderly conduct at around 11 a.m. following a rally held at Cadman Plaza.
Videos posted to Twitter show officers cuff Mamdani and Brooklyn Assembly Member Marcela Mitaynes with plastic zip ties before walking them away towards a prisoner transport vehicle.
The pair were sitting in the street alongside organizers from Housing Justice for All, blocking traffic, the videos show. The protesters sat in front of moving boxes — with “stop evictions, save lives” written on them — and suitcases that stretched across the roadway.
Officers at the scene played a recording that stated, “Since you have refused to leave the roadway you will be placed under arrest on a charge of disorderly conduct.”
Protesters, meanwhile, chanted “All evictions got to stop, no landlords, no cops.”
NOW: 17 community leaders w/ @housing4allNY, including Assemblymembers @ZohranKMamdani & @marcelaforny, are risking arrest in Brooklyn to demand NYS extend the eviction moratorium now. #EvictionFreeNY pic.twitter.com/3dZWyDJlRM
— Make the Road NY 🦋 (@MaketheRoadNY) August 19, 2021
Democratic primary winners of two Brooklyn council seats — Sandy Nurse and Alexa Avilés — were arrested as well.
A spokesperson for the NYPD confirmed that 17 people including four elected officials had been arrested at the protest, but didn’t immediately have the names of the officials.
The group was calling on Albany to go back in session in order to extend the state’s eviction moratorium, which is set to expire at the end of the month.
They were also protesting a recent decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that declared that a key provision of the eviction moratorium was unconstitutional.
The court ruled that the a form tenants submit to self-certify that they had experienced economic hardship due to the pandemic violated due process. It’s unclear how the decision with affect tenants struggling to pay their rent, but experts expect that people will get evicted.
Meanwhile, a federal eviction moratorium that runs through Oct. 3 is also being challenged in court.
A spokesperson for Mamdani’s office didn’t immediately return a request for comment.