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MTA Safety Committee Testimony-Keeping the MTA Safe For Everyone, Including its Employees

Good morning, I’m Lisa Daglian, Executive Director of the Permanent Citizens Advisory Committee to the MTA, PCAC.

We again point out the importance of the Safety Committee meetings and ask that they be held monthly and later in the day, at a time when more people are likely to pay attention. 

It is so disheartening to see the increase in assaults against employees and MTAPD. This month’s book shows that in February, Metro-North was where the preponderance of these unacceptable acts is occurring. Why? No one should put their life in jeopardy simply by going to work on the railroad. And while the numbers seem to be declining against both LIRR, subway and bus employees, they are still way too high. In the breakdown of summonses and arrests across the system, it would be good to know if people are being caught and held accountable for these crimes, and then what the outcomes of those cases are.

In the electronic security program update that will come during this meeting, we look forward to hearing how the technology being used is helping to protect riders and the system, but also the employees and PD who keep the MTA rolling.

We had also hoped for an update on the e-bike/e-scooter policy. You can’t turn on the news without hearing about fires from lithium-ion batteries. We also hear continuously from riders about people charging these devices onboard trains and in stations, and also riding them in stations. A solid and declarative policy, with teeth, will let people know the rules and give those enforcing them the back-up they need to do their jobs. We stand ready to assist. 

Thank you.