Press Release

American Airlines Donates Roundtrip Air Travel for NYPD's International Liaison Program 

December 20, 2007

Contribution to Aid NYPD in Gathering Terrorism-Related InformationRelevant to New York City in Key International Cities

The Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City announced today that American Airlines has pledged its support for the New York Police Department’s International Liaison Program. American Airlines will provide round-trip travel for detectives in the 2008 program assigned in Europe, Canada and Santo Domingo. The donation—to be administered by the New York Police Foundation, which currently funds living and travel expenses for the NYPD officers working abroad—will provide four round-trip travel vouchers for seven of the ten program participants.

“American Airlines’ support of this important initiative, among others, is a testament to the difference one company can make by partnering with the City,” said First Deputy Mayor Patricia E. Harris. “We are so pleased that the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City can serve as a touch point for those wanting to enhance the City’s public programs and the quality of life for New Yorkers and visitors alike.”

“We all know the women and men of the NYPD risk their lives day in and day out for our safety, and this overseas program is an extraordinary example of the lengths to which these brave law enforcement professionals go to protect our great city,” said Chuck Imhof, Vice President of Sales for American Airlines. “This is a truly innovative effort that benefits New York City, as well as the United States. At American, we wanted to demonstrate our support by covering one of the program’s major expenses, freeing funds to make the program even stronger.”

The International Liaison Program, a highly regarded counter terrorism initiative established by Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly, assigns NYPD detectives to key international cities where they work directly with their overseas counterparts in sharing information relevant to New York City. The Police Foundation currently funds living and travel expenses for NYPD officers working in Tel Aviv, London, Amman, Singapore, Santo Domingo, Toronto, Montreal, Paris, Lyons and Madrid. The NYPD is responsible for the salaries for the officers in the program.

“Our detectives overseas help the Police Department in deciding how to configure our counterterrorism posture in New York on a daily basis,” said Commissioner Kelly. “They are instrumental in protecting the city from another terrorist attack, and we commend American Airlines for its support of this important program.”

During the 2005 London mass transit bombings, an NYPD detective working under the auspices of the Liaison Program was in the Tube at the time of the attacks, and after consulting with his Scotland Yard counterparts, he was able to provide details from the scene to Police Headquarters in New York. The swift information-sharing helped the NYPD quickly redeploy resources in a way to better protect New York’s subways and streets from any analogous attack here. The NYPD detective posted in Madrid responded to the 2005 bombing there with an Interpol team and was the first non-Spanish law enforcement person to arrive on the scene and begin transmitting back to the New York. An NYPD detective in Amman provided similar intelligence support for decision-making in New York after American hotels in the Jordanian capital were attacked.

The Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City serves as the umbrella non-profit a 501(c)(3) organization for the City of New York. The Mayor’s Fund works closely with City agencies and partnering organizations to support public programs serving New Yorkers in all five boroughs. The New York City Police Foundation is an independent, non-profit organization established in 1971 by business and civic leaders to support programs connected with the NYPD that cannot otherwise be readily funded. The Foundation sponsors programs such as the Crime Stoppers Hotline, the International Liaison Program and 1-800-GUN-STOP in addition to sponsoring specialized counterterrorism training, and stress and trauma counseling for police officers.

Melissa Ferguson
(212) 788-7794