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61 cles. The law allows CATS to issue a civil penalty of $50 or of physical or emotional harm, property damage, and/or dis- arrest individuals who commit these acts. According to Char- ruption of the Authority's business operations." The full work- lotte Code Sec. 15-272 and 15-273, prohibited acts include: place violence policy may be found on WMATA's website at: Riding a CATS or LYNX vehicle without paying the These policies clearly state the roles of each staff member, the proper fare; definition of workplace violence, and the proper responses to Smoking; incidents of workplace violence. The employee's responsi- Consuming any alcoholic beverage or possessing an bility is to report any alleged incident immediately, ensure open container of any alcoholic beverage; that the report is documented and submitted to the Workplace Engaging in disruptive, disturbing behavior including: Violence coordinator, and cooperate in investigations. Emer- loud conversation, profanity or rude insults, or operat- gencies must be reported to the Metro Transit Police Depart- ing any electronic device used for sound without an ear- ment (MTPD). The policy states that employees who report phone(s); incidents must not be retaliated against. Supervisors and Carrying, possessing, or having within immediate access managers are required to provide needed medical attention, any dangerous weapon; notify family members, complete the reporting form and sub- Littering; and mit it to the Workplace Violence coordinator, and coordinate Excreting any bodily fluid or spit upon or at another investigations with him or her, ensuring that each alleged person. incident is investigated, evaluated, and resolved by imple- menting appropriate disciplinary actions and a remedial plan to address workplace violence. Advantage Zero tolerancetype policies reflect the agency's serious- Pierce Transit, Lakewood, Washington ness about enforcing agency rules and policies. Demon- strating intolerance of even minor rules violations by Pierce Transit's Workplace Violence Policy defines work- excluding violators from the transit system can deter seri- place violence as "physical or verbal behavior that endangers ous violence from occurring. or harms another employee, customer, contractor, or vendor, or that a reasonable person would constitute a threat of harm." Disadvantages Examples are cited: "Deliberate actions or behavior resulting in a physical assault against a person or property, such as hit- Enforcing exclusion policies may be challenging for ting, pushing, holding/restraining, spitting on, or blocking larger transit systems. the movement of another person. Verbal or written threats Legislative changes may be needed to establish an exclu- communicated directly or indirectly that a reasonable person sion or suspension-of-service policy. These changes may would perceive to intimidate, frighten or otherwise cause fear require considerable time and effort. of physical or emotional harm. . . . Inappropriate verbal or physical behavior that causes a reasonable person to feel unsafe, such as angry outbursts, throwing things, or expres- WORKPLACE VIOLENCE POLICIES sions of hostility." The policy is included in Appendix A of States are required to establish workplace violence standards this report. It clearly states that all reported incidents will be at least as effective as Occupational Safety and Health Admin- investigated and that retaliation against employees reporting istration standards; some states have established stricter stan- workplace violence is prohibited. dards. Transit agencies set policies that meet or exceed these standards that are believed to prevent and address all types of Advantages violence against operators and usually establish a clear re- sponse mechanism. Encourages entire organization (all divisions of an agency) to take violence against operators seriously. Enhances operator perception of management support. Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, Washington, D.C. FARE POLICY WMATA has established a zero tolerance workplace violence policy. WMATA's policy specifically states that the agency Fare policy, including fare payment and enforcement, is im- "has zero tolerance for workplace violence in whatever form it portant because it can contribute to fare disputes between the may take." WMATA defines workplace violence as including, operator and passenger. Complex fare structures and transfer but not limited to, "behavior occurring in the workplace policies can cause confusion on part of both the passenger that results in violent, harassing, intimidating, or other dis- and operator, and lead to disputes. Also, agencies that have ruptive behavior that communicates a direct or indirect threat strict fare policies believe that these policies minimize

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62 confusion on part of both the operator and passenger and pre- thesis study focusing on off-board fare payment for BRT vent assaults against operators. Strategies that attempt to dis- and LRT systems, initiated in the fall of 2010, is expected to associate the operator with fare enforcement include auto- more closely explore the impact of these systems on operator mated fare reminders and supervision intervention with unruly assaults. passengers. NYC Transit, for example, provides automated fare reminders and is testing a public address system that allows the dispatcher to directly address the passenger. TTC Fare-Free Systems policy was changed in April 2010 to provide more supervi- Goals of fare-free systems and agencies that offer fare-free sor support to operators. Operators are now able to deflect zones include transit promotion, mobility, support of the issues to supervisors who are assigned to particular locations local economy, and congestion reduction. Because fare pay- and can be summoned in a timely manner. Other strategies ment has been eliminated as a source of operatorpassenger include fare-free systems and off-board payment systems, disputes, these systems may be expected to experience fewer which mitigate most fare-related disputes. operator assaults compared with similar systems that do charge fares. At the same time, issues such as overcrowding and delays Standard Fare Payment Systems owing to excessive demand, an increase in problem riders, operator dissatisfaction, and a decrease in revenues have arisen The typical fare payment system requires operators to take in these systems. Fare-free systems include Chapel Hill, North some type of action if a passenger does not pay the proper Carolina's fixed-route buses; Clemson, South Carolina's bus fare. Operator training is important in ensuring that the oper- service for area universities; and Amherst, Massachusett's ator understands agency policies and procedures with regard bus service for its colleges and communities. Some limited to fare payment and enforcement. Although some agencies fare-free systems, such as King County Metro in Seattle, provide the benefit of the doubt to a customer, others have Washington, do not necessarily reduce the numbers of oper- zero tolerance approaches. Also some agencies place more ator assaults. King County Metro has a fare-free zone in the responsibility on the operator than others agencies do with downtown Seattle area. Passengers traveling to outlying points regard to fare collection. There are pros and cons associated need to pay at their destinations. This has caused concern for with each of these agency policies. TTC, recognizing that operators because they are more vulnerable to assault in these fare issues are bound to arise because TTC has a relatively areas with fewer riders and police. A TCRP synthesis study complex fare system, instructs operators to "read" the situa- examining successes and challenges of a fare-free policy was tion. For example, if there is a rainstorm and the bus is very initiated in the fall of 2010. late, the operator may conclude that, in this situation, most passengers are already frustrated and agitated. Therefore, the operator may provide the benefit of the doubt to passengers Agency Experience who do not pay the proper fare. MAX Line, the first BRT in North America, began service in Las Vegas in June 2004. It is operated by Veolia Transporta- Off-Board Fare Payment Systems tion on behalf of the Regional Transit Commission or RTC. The MAX has 2.5 million riders a year, and part of its route In North America, some BRT systems have off-board pay- is on the heaviest ridership corridor in the system, the 7.5- ment systems, whereas regular bus transit systems do not. mile Las Vegas strip from Las Vegas Boulevard to North Las Some BRT systems offer customers a choice of either off- Vegas. All MAX vehicles have AVL/CAD systems and traf- board or onboard fare collection. Customers purchase tickets fic signal prioritization that gives MAX buses green-light pri- or pay the fare at off-board payment sites and may board the ority through intersections, increasing reliability of its transit transit vehicle using any of its access points. They have no service. Most assaults occurring in the system have been interaction with the operator with regard to fare payment and caused by fare payment issues. Because fare payment for the simply retain the ticket or receipt while on board as proof of MAX Line is processed completely off-board, MAX Line payment. Off-board payment systems contribute to increased operators are less associated with fare payment than opera- customer satisfaction by facilitating the boarding process, tors of regular buses with onboard fare payment. Further- reducing dwell times, and increasing vehicle speeds and reli- more, because there are recorded announcements on the ability; off-board payment also decreases the likelihood of MAX Line about fare payment, operators do not need to fare disputes and, in turn, mitigates operator assaults. Before directly remind passengers about the fare. As a result, the deciding on a fare payment policy, transit agencies need to number of operator assaults on the MAX Line is much lower consider both the benefits and costs of the policy. Major costs than the rate for regular bus service. involve the installation and maintenance of ticketing machines in station-stops and the initiation and expenses related to fare Greater Cleveland RTA (GCRTA) has a BRT system with inspection. Instituting fare inspection requires hiring or trans- off-board fare payment. However, GCRTA generally has ferring and training personnel and may also require changes few assaults, so the impact of the fare payment system on in local or state laws authorizing enforcement. A TCRP syn- operator assault is difficult to assess.