Metro News Release

For immediate release: September 2, 2009

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Expect to see more Metro Transit Police officers in the after school hours
Riders encouraged to call hotline to report disorderly minors

After the school bell rings, riders should expect to see more Metro Transit Police officers at Metrorail stations near schools, and on trains and buses with large student populations.

With schools back in session, the Metro Transit Police Department (MTPD) will increase patrols to monitor students as they travel through the Metro system during after school hours. The officers will encourage students to keep moving, discourage them from loitering and remind them about appropriate behavior while riding Metro. Officers also will reprimand students who are violating laws and regulations, such as fighting, littering, eating or drinking. Students caught breaking laws will receive written warnings or possibly face arrest.

Metro Transit Police also have set up a special hotline voicemail for riders to report disorderly conduct of minors under the age of 18. Riders are encouraged to call 202-962-2118 to report disruptive behavior. Callers will be asked to leave a detailed message with the time, date, location and description of the incident. Officers are distributing business cards with the hotline number so that riders can keep the phone number handy.

The initiative intends to reinforce messages about acceptable behavior and set expectations for students who ride Metro to and from school, and address concerns from riders about disruptive minors.

“We want to start off the new school year right, and let students and all of our riders know that their safety is our top priority. Everyone should feel secure while riding Metro,” said Metro Transit Police Chief Michael A. Taborn.

Students, particularly in the District of Columbia, rely on Metrorail and Metrobus to get to and from school each day. Metro Transit Police work closely with the District of Columbia Public Schools to address student behavior in the Metro system. Metro Transit Police officers will go to area schools and talk with students about their behavior and the consequences of disruptive behavior while riding Metrobus and Metrorail. Officers also plan to deliver the same message to parents at PTA meetings, so that parents are aware of the MTPD’s efforts and expectations.

Transit Police also participate in a daily conference call related to minors and law enforcement issues.

In addition, MTPD will maintain close contact with school administrators and teachers. MTPD officers also talk with school principals, the Metropolitan Police department and school resource officers daily about issues that may crop up on campuses and carry over into the neighboring areas and Metro system after school.

Increased numbers of Metro Transit Police officers will patrol select stations near schools and where students tend to gather after school. Officers also will ride trains and buses in uniform and casual clothes. MTPD also will use the information they gather on the new hotline to target areas for increased surveillance.

“We want the students, their teachers, principals and parents to see us and know that we are there to protect the safety of the students and all of riders,” Taborn said.

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Media contact for this news release: Angela Gates or Lisa Farbstein at 202-962-1051.
For all other inquiries, please call customer service at 202-637-7000.

News release issued at 9:59 am, September 2, 2009.


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