Update on Transit Safety Measures
Our office has been hearing from many residents concerned with transit safety, and I am pleased to share that increased measures are being implemented to enhance safety for transit riders and the broader Calgary community. This is a highly-coordinated, multi-agency effort involving the Calgary Police Service, Transit Safety, Community Services, 911, and Calgary’s many community social service partners, stepping-up their collaborative efforts.
Solutions need to involve a highly orchestrated endeavour in order to see results over time. The below provides an update to three critical areas that will activate system-wide changes for the safety of Calgarians.
Increased Transit Patrols - These efforts will result in a greater presence along the LRT network and identify safety issues on the transit system before they become significant incidents:
- We are working through the recruitment and training of new Peace Officers scheduled for 2023. Last week, six more recruits graduated, and when our recruitment process is complete, we will have 25% (or 141) more Peace Officers on the system.
- We are also currently recruiting and training enhanced security guards to actively patrol the system who will have more authority than regular security guards. When complete we will have 31 in total.
- We are piloting the ‘Calgary Transit Ambassador’ program – a team of Transit employees that will increase visible presence and help with wayfinding and answering questions.
Enhanced Surveillance - The increased staffing levels will allow us to have a strengthened ability to monitor our network of 1,200 CCTV cameras and deploy response teams as required:
- We are increasing staffing levels at our Operations Control Centre where the dispatching of officers, monitoring CCTV cameras and responding to safety texts from customers takes place. View the job postings here if you are interested in applying.
- ‘Calgary Transit Ambassadors’ will also alert the Operations Control Centre when they witness or come across issues or incidents.
- We are improving the lighting along all 7th Avenue platforms from West Kerby to City Hall to be completed by the end of Q1 2023. The upgrade will result in increased lighting levels and greater visibility within and across platforms. This will also improve the ability of our cameras to capture platform activities. West Kerby upgrades are currently underway.
Coordinated Response - This is a complex issue, and we know that any solution needs to involve a highly coordinated, multi-agency effort in order to see results:
- Safety is multi-agency effort with Calgary Police Service, Transit Safety, Community Services, Corporate Security, 911 and Calgary’s many community social service partners are working together.
- In the fall 2022, the Calgary Police Service and Transit Officers issued 370 tickets and arrested 46 people as part of transit enforcement.
Our office will continue to advocate to increase transit safety throughout the city and within our ward. Every Calgary Transit passenger deserves to feel safe on the system. The Calgary Transit TransitWatch program allows Calgarians to discretely report safety concerns through our silent text services at 74100. In addition, our CTrain stations, platforms and MAX Purple stations are all equipped with help phones. We encourage riders to report any safety concerns. In situations where they feel that their safety is threatened, riders are reminded to always call 911.
Calgarians are asked to call the DOAP Team at 403-998-7388 if they see someone who needs help. The City recognizes the root causes of the social disorder are complex and extend far beyond the transit system. Addressing this issue will require ongoing support from many sectors, such as working with the Downtown Outreach Addictions Partnership (DOAP) Team, grassroots outreach teams, and emergency shelter providers to help those in need access support services.
Categories: Calgary Transit, DOAP, General, Safety, Tips