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Melinda Katz vows criminal justice reform, end to cash bail if elected Queens DA

Queens Borough President Melinda Katz on Wednesday made

Queens Borough President Melinda Katz on Wednesday made her first public address since Tiffany Cabán conceded the Democratic nomination for Queens district attorney. Photo Credit: Li Yakira Cohen

Queens Borough President Melinda Katz on Wednesday afternoon gave her first public address since Tiffany Cabán conceded the Democratic nomination for Queens district attorney. 

In remarks given at Queens Borough Hall, she promised criminal justice reform and equity for borough residents.

“This has been the longest election day ever,” Katz told reporters. “The rhetoric is done, the campaign is done, and it is now time to turn to real work that needs to happen here in the borough of Queens.”

Katz promised comprehensive criminal justice reform, including ending cash bail. She also made a firm promise to criminals that they will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Both victims and defendants will see justice under her watch, she said. 

“We have a borough that needs to know when our children walk to school, they will be able to do that in a safe environment,” she said. “We also need to send a clear message … you bring guns into our borough, you want to sell guns to our children, Queens is closed for business.”

Katz’s address came on the heels of Tiffany Cabán's concession speech Tuesday night at a party held for her volunteers and supporters in Astoria. On lessons she learned from the six-week election battle with Cabán, Katz said “every single vote counts.”

But she looked ahead to what can be accomplished now that the fight is over. 

“We need to come together as a borough, we need to come together as the Democratic party. If you want to see true criminal justice reform in the borough of Queens, we need to work together to make sure that happens," Cabán said.

Katz said she will not step down as borough president until after the general election in November, and that, as it stands, she is the only Democratic contender in that race. 

"I look forward to being sworn on Jan. 1," she said.

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