The subways are about to get a little kinder.
The MTA just launched the ‘Hate Has No Place in Our Transportation System’ campaign today, which is meant to help combat hate crimes occurring on the subway.
It comes on the heels of an awful attack on a transgender woman over the weekend on a Harlem subway platform, and today (Monday, January 27) is also the 75th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp.
The MTA is taking action after a 42% increase in hate crimes from last year, which often take place in the form of vandalism. The press release stated that the NYPD Transit Bureau investigated 75 hate crimes in 2019, and 53 in 2018.
So what does the new campaign entail exactly? Messages promoting kindness, respect and solidarity that will appear on over 4,000 screens across the NYC Subway, 2,600 screens on buses, and 550 screens on commuter railroads.
Besides just promoting positive attributes, the ads also includes actionable steps that can be taken. “To report bias-motivated threats, harassment, discrimination, or graffiti, call 1-888-392-3644 or text ‘HATE’ to 81336. To report a crime in progress, tell an MTA employee or police officer or call 911 immediately,” it reads.
“New York is built on diversity, openness and inclusion,” said (MTA) Chairman and CEO Patrick J. Foye. “Every New Yorker should be able to travel free of harassment and feel safe while riding with the MTA. We want to do what we can to put a halt to these despicable crimes. We hope that our campaign will not only help reduce bias activity but will remind everyone of the core New York values of kindness, respect and solidarity.”