This Subway Sticker Campaign Wants You to Recognize Rikers Island

Posted on: May 23rd, 2016 at 5:19 am by
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It’s one of the few geographic elements on the subway map without designation. But a trio of design students wants to make sure you know where Rikers Island is. Despite the recent movement (and momentum) – backed by Governor Cuomo – to have the prison closed due to its purported horrible conditions.

With the red “pointer” sticker, Misha Volf, Laura Sánchez, and Estefanía Acosta de la Peña, three Parsons School of Design graduate students, aim to raise awareness about Rikers. While the island prison has been on and off the subway map for years, neither the trains themselves nor those newfangled digital kiosks label it.

More than 10,000 inmates live on the island, many of whom are waiting for trial and haven’t been convicted of anything. To get to the island, friends and family from around the city have to take the subway to Queensboro Plaza station and then the Q100 bus to the island’s bridge. A second bus takes visitors across the bridge.

But the subway car maps don’t show that at all, or even tell viewers where the island is. “A lot of people don’t even know where Rikers is, and it’s so close to the city,” Sánchez said.

So far, the students have printed 6,000 stickers and have been handing them out to friends and fellow activists.

We spotted this sticker placement on a local F train out of 2nd Avenue station.

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