By Laura J. Nelson, May 8, 2014
In a new survey, about 20% of passengers reported feeling unsafe due to sexual harassment or other "unwanted sexual attention."
One in five passengers on Metro trains and buses have recently felt
unsafe due to sexual harassment or other forms of "unwanted sexual
attention," according to new data.
A Los Angeles County
Metropolitan Transportation Authority survey of nearly 20,000 passengers
on the sprawling bus and rail system asked whether they felt unsafe
during the last month while riding Metro due to "unwanted touching,
exposure, comments, or any other form of unwanted sexual behavior."
About 21% of rail passengers and 18% of bus passengers said yes.
About 17% of bus riders and 13% of train riders said they felt unsafe
while waiting at bus stops or train stations.
"This is something that we’re going to look at very carefully," Metro spokesman Paul Gonzales said.
typically asks about safety in its customer surveys, which the agency
has conducted at least once a year for more than a decade. But this is
the first time passengers have been asked about sexual behavior, said
Jeff Boberg, an agency transportation manager who works with data and
employees distribute paper surveys, printed in English and Spanish, on
every transit line at least once every six months, Boberg
said. Translations in nine other languages are available online for the
5% of Metro riders who do not speak English or Spanish.