The MTA will now receive monthly updates on hate crimes reported in its facilities — a response to the citywide uptick in the crimes documented since the election of Donald Trump.
Hate crime stats will be packaged in the police department’s crime briefing, which currently includes data on incidents like murders, rapes and assaults that have occurred in the MTA’s subway and bus networks.
The briefing is presented to the New York City Transit and Bus Committee each month.
The addition comes upon request from MTA Vice Chairman Fernando Ferrer, as well as several board members, on Monday.
Mayor Bill de Blasio and Police Commissioner James O’Neill last week announced a 35-percent increase in hate crimes between the election, on Nov. 8, and Dec. 5, throughout the city. During that time there were 43 hate crimes documented. Some involved swastikas scrawled on sidewalks, park property and subway cars.
“If there is a material increase in those incidents, would it not be wise to report them as we do with every other?” Ferrer asked Vincent Coogan, assistant chief with the NYPD Transit Bureau, at Monday’s committee meeting.
Coogan said that his department can add reports on hate crimes to its briefings without much difficulty. The department already compiles the information internally.
“Yes, I’ll have that for you,” Coogan said. “We have a unit that’s dedicated just to investigate those crimes. … We take it very seriously. We always have.”
Board member Andrew Albert welcomed the inclusion of the stats. As did board memeber John Samuelsen, the president of TWU Local 100, the labor union representing MTA employees.
Last week, a Muslim MTA worker wearing her uniform and hijab was called a “terrorist” and pushed down a flight of stairs at Grand Central Terminal.
“There seems to have been an uptick,” said Albert. “And as much as we’re tracking other specific types of crimes, we should be tracking hate crimes.”