TTC CEO Rick Leary said several discussions are underway following a series of recent high-profile assaults on employees, which include looking at uniform visibility and greater security. .
Leary spoke to PKBNEWS on Wednesday after mounting incidents involving assaults on TTC employees and said they were “talking about anything we can do to make this place safer for our employees. It’s critical.
Earlier Wednesday morning, the latest incident, two TTC employees were chased with a syringe at Dundas station. However, no employees were injured.
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On Monday, up to 15 youths allegedly attacked two uniformed TTC employees as they were traveling by bus to work.
Then, on Saturday night, a female TTC bus driver was shot with a BB gun as she waited to pick up another bus. PKBNEWS spoke to her, Alexandra Stoeckle, who said, “I’m so grateful it wasn’t a bullet.”
Regarding Stoeckle’s case, Leary said she was given a list of things that other operators were worried about and was going to sit down and talk to her.
“My discussions with her about really supporting them from a more visibility standpoint, having more managers, assistant managers, talking to employees, getting that kind of feedback,” Leary said. . “You know, nothing’s on the table, but they’re still driving the bus and people who know who they are.”
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Leary also said the TTC board is focusing its efforts on mental health as a longer-term action.
“That’s why the concept of working now with more mental health experts to talk about what we can do in our Tube stations. We’re looking to be compassionate with Streets to Homes, but there’s still a lot to do. And that’s what we’re at the table with everyone to talk about.
Meanwhile, TTC runners also faced assaults. More recently, on Tuesday afternoon, a woman in her twenties was stabbed in the head and face on the Spadina Avenue streetcar. She did not know her attacker, police said.
Last month, two women were stabbed on board a TTC tube car near High Park station. One of the women was killed and the other was injured, but was later released from hospital.
In the incident, police say the two do not know the alleged assailant who faces a first-degree murder charge and an attempted murder charge.
“It does what the customer told us to do,” Leary said of customer fear about using the TTC.
“More visibility, more visible security there, establishes that level of comfort for them. This is what we are working on. »
The Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU), the transit union, said it has repeatedly called on transit agencies and municipalities to implement tougher safety measures.
“For years we have heard politicians and transit agencies condemn violent attacks on public transit, but they have done nothing,” said John Di Nino, President of ATU Canada. “How will they prevent future attacks? We need real actions, not just discussions.
— With files from Sean O’Shea of PKBNEWS
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