MTA workers calling for more NYPD help in subways


NEW YORK — In the span of 13 hours on Thursday, four attacks happened to transit workers around New York City.

Two were spit on and someone threw something at a platform cleaner. In Harlem, someone kicked in the door of the subway conductor on a 1 train. 

Robert Kelley is in the stations department and represents the Transport Workers Union Local 100 as a Vice President.

“We are telling you this as people who work there everyday, these are happening everyday. We are spat on, they put their hands on us, we are threatened with needles. It runs rampant,” he said.

Interim NYC Transit President Sarah Feinberg calls attacks unacceptable and reprehensible.

“We’ve been talking about the need for more policing, I appreciate the NYPD and the MTA Police for everything that they’re doing, they’re good partners to us, we just need more help. We’ve talked over and over again about the mental health crisis that’s happening in this city. When you’ve got someone who’s beating in the door of a train operators cab at two o’clock in the morning, that’s the perfect example of the kind of example of the kind of mental health crisis we’ve got in the system right now, and we just need help and we need more resources,” Feinberg said.

She added that she’s not going to stop talking about it until her request is met.

At the April board meeting, NYPD Transit Bureau Chief Kathleen O’Reilly said the system is safe. Hundreds more officers are assigned to the transit bureau.

The city and MTA have pledged to work together with homeless services.

Bus operators and station personnel have been assaulted, attacked and harassed in the past year. 

Station crews want the police to look at areas where there are problems being reported. NYPD says the transit system is part of the CompStat system that identifies trends.

Correction: The spelling of NYPD Transit Bureau Chief Kathleen O’Reilly has been updated.

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