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New York City Mayor Eric Adams announced Thursday that he will dramatically beef up police presence in the city’s subway system, which is still a long way from regaining its pre- pandemic ridership.
Adams, a Democrat and former police officer who has just taken office as mayor, explained at a press conference that officers patrolling the streets will be tasked with making regular inspections of subway stations and cars.
Adams explained the city needs to regain trust in its transport system, and assured that from now on there is going to be a much greater police presence in the subway, although it will be done with existing resources.
Adams insisted that he wants an “omnipresence” on the part of the police to give a greater sense of security at a time when, according to surveys, many New Yorkers once again see the subway as a more dangerous place.
Overall data meanwhile show a significant reduction in crime, although those figures are marked by the large loss of ridership the transit system experienced with the outbreak of the covid-19 pandemic and from which it has only partially recovered.
At the same time, Adams and state Governor Kathy Hochul announced a new plan to send teams of specialists —social and health workers, among others— to the subway and other parts of the city to support the homeless and direct them to shelters.
The mayor stressed that these teams will be able to better serve the needs of the homeless and, at the same time, free the police from these tasks so that they can focus on fighting crime.