Safety volunteers escort BART passengers to their cars
EL CERRITO, Calif. (KTVU) - A group of Bay Area men says they're tired of people feeling unsafe on the BART system after a recent increase in crime including the brutal killing of 18-year-old Nia Wilson and two other deadly attacks. The men are taking it upon themselves to provide security for BART passengers.
Rodney Alamo Brown is the group's organizer. "Tuesday we came out with a contingent of brothers who wanted to make sure that the riders were truly safe so. In the wake of Miss Nia, we are definitely doing it on behalf of her," said Brown.
For two hours a day the men who carry safety escort signs, are willing to walking anyone to their vehicles.
Although they're doing it out of the kindness of their hearts. These men know some people will be reluctant to take them up on this service.
"If they say no, we just move on to the next passenger. We don't want to press anyone if they want the service they are more than welcome to have it. If not then we just keep going," said Brown.
The men do it for free as their way of giving back. But due to BART's contract with its police department, the only people currently allowed to provide security at BART stations are officers.
However, safety organizers believe anyone willing to help should be allowed. "It should take individuals within the sector of the community to say hey, instead of complaining about it. Here's something we can do to allow folk to feel safe," said Brown.
"It's great hearing that the citizens want to help and stand up and do something to help people feel safe at BART but obviously we want to make sure there's a partnership in place. So people know that those people are someone you can trust," said BART Spokeswoman Alicia Trost.
The group is hoping they can work with BART to provide passenger safety. The agency says it wasn't aware of the safety patrol and will have officers out to explain BART's security process.
The group is hoping to work with BART not against it to help provide passenger safety.