Transit police officers have started clearing all passengers from LRT trains once they reach Century Park Station, the transit workers’ union says.
The move is to address the problem of “non-destination riders” who present challenges to transit operators and transit police. Many of the non-destination riders are people experiencing homelessness.
“We want to make sure it’s uncomfortable for them to use our system for their kitchen, party room, and bathroom.” Transit Union Local 569 branch manager Eddie Robar said in a statement on Wednesday.
The problem with non-destination riders has become more significant since the Edmonton Transit System introduced a no-fare system in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Riders staying on the system indefinitely has been an unintended consequence, according to the union.
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People who are removed from Century Park trains who have nowhere to go will be put on special buses headed downtown that will drop them at agencies serving homeless people or any other stop they’d like along the way.
ETS will also begin removing passengers from buses at the terminus of certain routes as well.