NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Public advocate and mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio was arrested Wednesday on disorderly conduct charges during a rally to keep Long Island College Hospital in Brooklyn from closing.
De Blasio was released with a summons after being arrested with City Councilman Steve Levin and about a dozen other protesters outside the State University of New York’s office in Midtown.
“When things are unacceptable, people turn to civil disobedience when all other systems are failing,” de Blasio told 1010 WINS’ Al Jones.
De Blasio’s campaign tweeted a picture of his arrest.
Video from the scene shows him being put into plastic handcuffs and then led to a nearby police van.
“We have to stop hospital closures in this city,” he told reporters as he was being escorted away by police. “People are going to be much sicker in this city if we keep losing hospitals. People are going to lose their jobs. We have to fight it.”
As the stone-faced city public advocate was led away by police, the crowd chanted “no hospitals, no peace.”
“This is not a time for business as usual,” de Blasio told WCBS 880’s Alex Silverman following his release. “It certainly brought attention and we need it. We need the focus because we have to force the mayor, the governor and the federal government to act.”