The cleanup involves off-duty officers, volunteers and a lot of paint.READ MORE: Mayor De Blasio Unveils Extreme Weather Plan To Avoid Death And Destruction Of Ida During Future Storms
Getting the big job rolling was NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea, taking what was a graffiti-covered supermarket building in Bushwick from marred and marked up to bright and bare.
Among the volunteer painters were officers, participating on their own time, and very young helpers.
“The best thing is all the little kids picking up the brushes, community members, businesses donating and interspersed with the men and women of the police department,” Shea said.
HAPPENING NOW: Members of the 102 Pct. teamed up with the Woodhaven BID, working together to clean-up the Jamaica Ave corridor. We were able to clean graffiti from several locations that were causing an eyesore in the community we serve and protect, including 76-01 Jamaica Ave. pic.twitter.com/zgvE1uJOCj
— NYPD 102nd Precinct (@NYPD102Pct) April 10, 2021
The department has been seeking out volunteers and asking for supplies donations for about a month since announcing the plan in March.
The city gets thousands of community complaints about graffiti every year.
An NYPD map shows dots are on 537 locations, public and privately owned, that members of 300 teams responded to on Saturday.
- To view an interactive map of where volunteers were cleaning, click here.
Along Lexington Avenue in Manhattan’s Murray Hill, 8-year-old Marisa Vanderschauw happily beautified a wall she passes by on her way to school.
“‘Cause then you won’t see any more graffiti,” she told CBS2’s Dave Carlin.
“This is just only the beginning. We’ll be doing this all summer long, maybe not on this scale, but we will be hitting different communities,” said NYPD Community Affairs Bureau Chief Jeffrey Maddrey.
During today’s Community & NYPD graffiti cleanup, officers partnered up with volunteers from around the community of Corona & Elmhurst to clean graffiti from 111-11 44 Avenue. Let’s keep working together to keep NYC graffiti-free!! pic.twitter.com/XLwVZLKdf7READ MORE: New York City's Vaccine Mandate Could Impact Nets Season, As Irving Reportedly Not Getting Shot
— NYPD 110th Precinct (@NYPD110Pct) April 10, 2021
“It feels great. It’s good to help the community,” Ridgewood resident Juan Prince said.
Back in Bushwick, it helped having such a large and dedicated army of painters to get the job wrapped up before lunchtime.
“It’s a good thing when you can see your neighborhood clean again,” Bushwick resident Billy Quinones said.
“This is community and police working together, and starting today and every day, this is the way Bushwick has to be,” said Barbara Smith, president of the 83rd Precinct Community Council.
Spreading so much more than paint, this fosters togetherness to help spread trust.
Sector Boy graffiti team is off to a strong start❗️First stop was 19 East 19th Street – looks great❗️ pic.twitter.com/I4VMwDvQcg
— NYPD 13th Precinct (@NYPD13Pct) April 10, 2021
The NYPD said it received more than 6,000 complaints in 2020 about damage to properties – including from graffiti.
The NYPD’s Vandals Task Force works to prevent graffiti around the city.MORE NEWS: Some Health Care Workers Still Defiant As New York State Vaccine Mandate Takes Effect
The NYPD is asking New Yorkers send in photos and suggest cleanup locations by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.