NYC Speaks launches survey to inform key priorities of the Adams administration

City Hall building at night in Manhattan New York City
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NYC Speaks – the public engagement campaign designed to inform the priorities of newly elected Mayor Eric Adams and his administration – announced Friday the launch of the first phase of the initiative: a citywide survey that will seek input from New Yorkers about their communities, the issues they face and the future of the city.

The survey, which can be completed at nycspeaks.org, will be open to the public through Jan. 28. The survey asks New Yorkers a variety of questions about topics that concern them such as Health & Well-being, Housing & Neighborhoods, Economy & Workforce, Racial Equity, Gender Justice, Climate & Infrastructure, Education & Youth Development, Public Safety, Arts & Culture, and Civic Engagement. In addition to English, the survey will be available online in the top 10 languages spoken by New Yorkers with limited English proficiency.

NYC Speaks is focusing on driving participation in communities that are too often left out of decision-making processes and shaped by disparities. Eighteen organizations are acting as Community Data Partners, overseeing the work of more than 150 on-the-ground canvassers in the 33 priority neighborhoods identified by the city’s Taskforce on Racial Inclusion and Equity. All canvassing will be done with COVID safety protocols in place, including mandatory masking and social distancing. In addition, NYC Speaks is partnering with elected officials, nonprofits and other civic organizations across the five boroughs to encourage participation in the survey.

“I am proud to support the launch of the NYC Speaks citywide survey,” said Adams. “NYC Speaks will give everyday New Yorkers from across the five boroughs an opportunity to provide input to my administration on the issues that face their neighborhoods and ways we can address them. I am especially hopeful that this survey will provide those New Yorkers who are too often excluded from the conversation with an opportunity to tell me directly what they think our priorities should be.”

The data from the citywide survey will paint a picture of the state of the city on pressing issues from COVID-19 prevention measures to supporting workers, businesses and cultural organizations in the recovery. NYC Speaks will compile the data acquired through the survey into a report, which it will deliver to Adams and his administration in February.

The report will also be made available to the public.

“This is the FUBU of research: for us, by us,” said Dr. Shango Blake, co-executive director of NYC Speaks. “Everyday New Yorkers have been involved in designing these questions so we can learn how we can move our city forward. The data we acquire through this survey will help the Adams administration and its departments guide their policy and budget priorities and better serve the people of this great city.”

In addition to the launch of its survey today, NYC Speaks seeks to engage New Yorkers from every corner of the city through a sustained, months-long effort to gather ideas, concerns and other input through large-scale community discussions and a series of planning workshops designed to convert the ideas gathered throughout this process into tangible government actions.

“The NYC Department of Education is excited to partner with NYC Speaks on ‘NYC Youth Speaks,’ an integrated but unique component designed to directly engage our young people on their thoughts and ideas to make New York City an even better place,” said Schools Chancellor David C. Banks.

The data gathered by NYC Speaks will be used to collaborate with Mayor Adams’ administration to create a blueprint for the future of the city, complete with concrete priorities, policies and budget items, culminating with the adoption of the FY 2023 city budget in June 2022.

NYC Speaks is an independent initiative funded by the Goodnation Foundation, an IRC 501(c)(3) organization, and managed by HR&A Advisors, a mission-driven, employee-owned urban planning and economic development consulting firm based in NYC. NYC Speaks will partner with a robust network of civic and community-based organizations to co-lead this process.

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