The Department of Correction is committed to closing Rikers Island by 2027 and replacing it with easily accessible borough-based facilities that will provide more comfortable, climate controlled environments for incarcerated individuals. We are honoring that commitment with the transfer of the James A. Thomas Center (JATC) to the Department of Citywide Services (DCAS) in accordance with LL16 of 2021.
Additionally, we are working in earnest to identify other facilities that can be transferred under this administration as we continue to move toward a safer and more humane borough-based jail system with state-of-the-art facilities.
The transfer of JATC represents an important first step in the process of closing Rikers by 2027, an ambitious and noble goal that will advance New York City forward towards a better, fairer, and safer criminal justice system.
JATC, formerly the House of Detention for Men, was a 1,200 bed, all cell jail renamed in honor of the Department's first African American warden. The facility was built in the early 1930s as the first permanent jail on Rikers Island.