New York retailers have been severely affected by organized shoplifting in Democrat-run states.
Soft-on-crime policies under the Democrat-led state government in New York have led to substantial losses for businesses.
Reports indicate a staggering estimated loss of $4.4 billion for retailers across New York state in 2022. Store owners are angry over Governor Hochul’s strategy in addressing this crisis.
Governor Hochul, a Democrat, recently vetoed a bill intended to address organized theft rings. A spokesperson for the Governor cited the proposal’s $35 million cost, stating it wasn’t accounted for in the budget.
From the New York Post:
Retailers across New York state say there’s no end in sight to the rising epidemic of organized shoplifting rings — and warn it could lead to more store closures, increased costs for consumers and threats of violence against store employees.
Store owners said they lost $4.4 billion last year as a result of retail theft — which they say adds to the urgency for Gov. Kathy Hochul to crack down.
However, Hochul vetoed a bipartisan bill last week — to the chagrin of store owners — that would have created a task force to combat organized theft.
Law enforcement officials attribute the rise in criminal activity to prosecutors advocating progressive policies and leniency toward offenders. The Syracuse police chief recently revealed a 55 percent surge in shoplifting cases since 2021, with potential underreporting suggesting the numbers could be even higher.
The escalating thefts and robberies have pushed some retailers to contemplate shutting down their businesses due to safety concerns and the challenges posed by numerous thefts.
“Stephen Lands, owner of Buffalo Fleece and Outerwear, told WIVB-TV in September that he may need to close his shop due to rampant theft of his merchandise.” New York Post reported.
“In recent months, Lands said he has been robbed 20 times,” New York Post continued.
In May, The Western Journal highlighted New York City mayor Eric Adams’ initiative involving kiosks in retail stores, intended for potential shoplifters to access social services. However, the program faced significant skepticism and doubt.
According to Adams’ website, the proposal involved installing kiosks in stores, allowing individuals contemplating theft to connect with social services programs instead.
The New York Police Department is experiencing an alarming exodus of officers.
Per NYPD pension data analyzed by the New York Post, “a total of 2,516 NYPD cops have left so far this year, the fourth highest number in the past decade and 43% more than the 1,750 who hightailed it in 2018, before the pandemic and crime spikes hit the city.”
The report also indicates a significant rise in officers leaving before reaching the 20-year mark required to receive full pensions, escalating from 509 in 2020 to 1,040 this year—a staggering 104% surge in departures before pension eligibility.