Poughkeepsie Activists Demand Youth Programs, End to Jail Expansion

Until Victory

by Schuyler K.

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On June 2, I joined a group of around 20 activists to rally outside of the abandoned YMCA building in the City of Poughkeepsie. It was the second rally in as many months outside of the abandoned Y. Nearly everyone at the rally spoke, primarily highlighting the disconnect between the county’s persistent effort to fund jail expansion and its intransigent refusal to spend nearly any money on community programs.

At the rally, young people noted the lack of any after-school programs or activities in their community, affirming that they had seen folks turn to crime upon being unable to find any productive things to do. One mother said that her child asked her, “What happened to the YMCA?” She was forced to say, “I don’t know.”

Yet, there is in fact a striking logic behind Dutchess County’s refusal to fund things like after-school programs and community centers (the…

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