Los Angeles DA George Gascon offering free shuttle service so staff can get to work safely
The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office this week launched a program to transport employees between their cars and workplaces in downtown Los Angeles amid a series of incidents in which some were face the public, officials said Thursday.
On Monday, the DA’s office launched the Employee Safe Transportation and Escort Program (E-STEP) with the goal of providing free safe transportation to employees assigned to the Civic Center area.
“Security incidents involving aggressive confrontations initiated by members of the public have occurred to our assigned employees in the Civic Center area, while walking between their vehicles or the transportation area and the office,” a statement said. release announcing the program.
The program will be managed by the DA Office of Investigation and will be in effect until permanent transportation services are secured.
The shuttle service will use centralized pickup and drop-off points at the Civic Center’s Hall of Justice to connect passengers to Union Station and a parking lot in Chinatown.
Employees signing up for the service will be transported in a seven-passenger van.
The sworn staff of the Bureau of Investigation will work in two shifts for each day of the work week: from 6:20 a.m. to 8:20 a.m. and from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
The shuttle will stop at each location every 20 minutes.
The transportation service’s announcement comes as District Attorney George Gascon faces mounting criticism that he has failed to prosecute the crime.
“It is unprecedented in the 173-year history of the LA District Attorney’s Office that employees should be escorted to and from their cars to protect them from random violent attacks,” John McKinney, a prosecutor with the district attorney’s office who short to overthrow Gascon in 2024, Fox News Digital said in a statement.
“While I applaud George Gascon for taking action to ensure the safety of AD personnel, I blame his policies which contributed to the need for such extraordinary measures,” he added. “My thoughts are also with the millions of Los Angelenos who must travel to Los Angeles County without the same protection.”
The move comes as Los Angeles residents fled public transportation as drug use and violence soared.
Serious crimes, such as aggravated assault, murder and rape, on Los Angeles trains and buses rose 24% last year, compared to 2021, while other less serious crimes increased rose 14%, the Los Angeles Daily News reported.
“We don’t even see business people anymore. We don’t see anyone going to Universal. It’s just people who have no choice (but) to take the system, homeless people and drug addicts,” an unidentified subway operator told the Los Angeles Times.
Transit officials responded to spikes in crime by pledging $122 million to a program last year to deploy 300 ambassadors to public transportation.
The ambassadors are unarmed and report crimes while helping some passengers.
New York Post