What you should know

  • The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene offers free training on safe and effective methods to prevent the spread of rats through the Rat Academy.
  • The course has multiple dates and Mayor Eric Adams will speak at the workshop on Thursday in the Bronx.

NEW YORK – Mayor Eric Adams will participate in one of Rat Academy’s in-person classes on Thursday, hosted by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, to learn safe and effective methods for prevent the spread of rodents.

Mayor Eric Adams has made rat eradication a key political goal for the city. Even in December, Adams announced a new position in his administration.

Late last year, Mayor Adams signed a legislative package to eradicate rats. One of the bills allows the city to dramatically reduce the number of hours trash can sit on public sidewalks. Adams also announced plans to hire a new “rat czar” to coordinate the city’s anti-rodent efforts.

New York City leaders have been trying to control the rodent population for generations, with mixed results. Recently, sightings of rats in parks, sidewalks and other places in the city have increased.

According to data released by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH), city inspectors documented twice as much rodent activity in 2022 as they did in 2021.

In total, city health inspectors documented about 60,000 cases of rodent activity in the five boroughs last year. That compares to around 30,000 rodent citations in 2021. The city council blamed the doubling in rat sightings in part on health inspectors visiting more properties last year than the year before. But that doesn’t tell the whole story.

Before the pandemic, in 2018, health inspectors recorded about 31,000 rodent sightings during 255,000 property visits. Last year, inspectors made about 5,000 fewer visits to the property, but still documented 93% more rodent activity than five years earlier.

The mayor successfully appealed a rodent activity citation issued in May 2022. But in December, an inspector issued his property two more rodent activity citations for “failing to eliminate a rodent infestation” and ” not having eliminated the conditions that lead to rodent waste”. Adams insisted he spent $7,000 exterminating rats around his apartment building and vowed to fight the latest summons.

For those who are interested in the free Rat Academy courses


  • Wednesday, April 26, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

In person

  • Thursday March 23 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
    Location: 830 Fox Street, Bronx
  • Tuesday, March 28, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
    Location: Brooklyn Public Library, Greenpoint Branch, 107 Norman Avenue, Brooklyn
  • Thursday, April 6 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
    Location: Hot Jalapeno, 219 E. 116th Street, Manhattan
  • Virtual Rat Academy for Community Gardeners
    Friday, March 31, 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

What do I learn in the course?

This free three-hour course is open to anyone interested in learning more about rat management.

You can learn more about safe and effective rat prevention methods in your home and community at one of our free scheduled trainings. This three-hour training is accessible to everyone, but can be particularly useful for:

  • Superintendents and construction staff
  • Building managers and owners
  • neighborhood associations
  • community gardeners
  • Local company
  • Each training can be adapted to the public and the district. Typically, this training course is organized and sponsored by a community partner or elected official.

To register for a community training or for more information about hosting or sponsoring a training, email [email protected] or call 3-1-1.

For more information, go here.

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