The New York Police Department is increasing the presence of its unarmed volunteer force at subway stations to combat crime, The New York Post reported.
The department has been stationing auxiliary officers at the top 20 subway stations to help New Yorker’s feel safe, according to The New York Post.
“We know that in order for more and more people to return to mass transit, they need to feel safe. That’s why we continue to call on the city to add additional full-time police officers and mental-health resources to the subway system immediately,” said Interim MTA President Sarah Feinberg, according to The New York Post. (RELATED: NYPD Hate Crimes Unit Investigates Vandalism Of Statue Depicting Anti-Communist Polish Priest)
The auxiliary unit mainly hands out face masks and cleans up graffiti. Recently, volunteers have been handing out theft-prevention flyers.
— NYPD Auxiliary (@NYPDauxiliary) May 6, 2021
“As part of our comprehensive effort to keep all subway riders safe, Auxiliary Officers from Patrol and Transit will be deployed with a Police Officer across our transit system,” said a police spokesman, according to The New York Post. “These Auxiliary officers will assist alongside a robust police presence, in the NYPD’s ongoing work to provide a safe commute.”
Fox News anchor Sandra Smith commented on the unsafe environment in the city. “For anybody who has been in New York City during the pandemic up ’til now, it is, I mean, we sound like a broken record talking about it but businesses are boarded up restaurants are closed, crime is spiking. You do not feel safe walking even a block in this city right now,” she said. New York saw a 43% increase in murders and a 97% increase in shootings in 2020.