For weeks, MTA leaders have pleaded for assist coping with prepare and bus violence, and a rash of latest assaults proves they want it. Particularly with middle-schoolers about to depend on the system as they return to in-person class.
Tuesday morning alone noticed a 55-year-old woman shoved onto the tracks at a Bronx station and an MTA bus driver bashed within the head with a 2-by-Four in Brooklyn. That adopted per week that noticed 5 separate subway knifings, and a spate of track-shovers in latest months.
Transit-system felonies rose 13.three p.c for the 12 months, as of Sunday, and a whopping 70 p.c over three years in the past — despite the fact that ridership is only a fraction of the pre-COVID stage.
Within the face of this chaos, NYC Transit chief Sarah Feinberg early this 12 months begged the town for a higher police presence: “We want the system to not be checked out as one thing that’s underground, forgotten.” Her letter to Mayor de Blasio cited such “troubling assaults” as “six separate incidents of violent assaults on ladies on the Morgan L station” in Brooklyn. “Challenges” posed by the “homelessness and mental-health disaster,” she famous, have “solely worsened.”
MTA boss Pat Foye known as the assaults “horrific and unacceptable” and demanded the town step up mental-health care and policing.
Police Commissioner Dermot Shea and Transit Chief Kathleen O’Reilly appear to acknowledge the issue. The assaults have gotten “too frequent,” mentioned Shea; it’s “disturbing.”
However the mayor is as hapless as ever. Final week, he truly denied Shea made that remark. And Tuesday, he for the 55th time blamed “a perfect storm” to clarify a doubling of subway murders.
After a 12 months, sir, you need to have methods for dealing with these no-longer-unexpected challenges. But he couldn’t even define a plan to take care of subway violence, whilst middle-schoolers head underground.
Pray de Blasio not less than steps out of the way in which and lets the adults on the NYPD and MTA do what’s mandatory to revive subway security.