Transit union calls for more safety measures for Metro drivers after weekend shooting

ST. LOUIS – The shooting of a Metro bus operator this weekend has leaders with the Amalgamated Transit Union calling for more safety measures.  The operator was shot near a transfer station at North Broadway and Taylor early Saturday morning.  Metro officials say he was not on his bus and was off Metro property when he became the victim of a robbery attempt.

The operator was about to begin his first route of the day.  Metro officials say he was one of several shooting victims in St. Louis this weekend.  Metro met with leaders from ATU Local 788 Monday to discuss the shooting.

After the meeting, the vice president of the local told FOX 2 she was not satisfied with Metro’s response.

“He’s on your clock. He’s on your watch.  It’s your responsibility to keep us safe,” said Catina Wilson.

Local 788 President Reginald Howard said his members just want to see more safety measures put in place.

“It’s pretty bad,” said Howard.  “They feel like the company doesn’t have their back.”

A Metro official said the transit agency cares as much if not more about the safety of Metro operators, employees and passengers.  She said community crime would not keep Metro from operating 7 days a week, providing an important public transit service for the region recording more than 41 million boarding’s a year.

The ATU International cited the shooting in St. Louis as a reason more safety measures should be put in place for its members across North America.  Local 788 leaders say they will be pushing for more safety measures in the future.

Howard said having security on busses should be an option, “Whatever needs to be done, we need to get something done soon.”