Mayor Adams tours Rikers Island and gets look at 2,700 confiscated weapons, drugs

Despite the deaths this year of nine people in city custody, Mayor Eric Adams heaped praise on the Department of Correction during a tour of Rikers Island

While he called any death unacceptable, the mayor said: "I am truly pleased by what I am seeing and what I saw today."

Rikers Island has been plagued with problems for years. A federal judge recently gave the city six more months to enact reforms before she decides on whether to appoint a monitor.

On a typical day, 900 correction officers are out sick, according to Commissioner Louis Molina. That’s actually a reduction from the 2,000 who had been calling out sick.

The mayor said it’s a "misnomer" to suggest that all those absent from work are "faking." The absences have led many inmates to miss medical appointments because there aren’t enough officers present to escort them.

During his tour Wednesday, the mayor showed off the more than 2,700 makeshift weapons and pieces of contraband seized at Rikers just since February. He said taking the weapons out of circulation will make Rikers safer.

Get breaking news alerts in the free FOX5NY News app!  |  Sign up for FOX 5 email newsletters

But critics abound. 

On Thursday, some loved ones of the nine who have died this year will rally near City Hall to call for de-carceration and better inmate access to medical care.