The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) board of directors approved “Ride with Respect,” a new policy to help improve the overall customer experience by addressing nuisance behaviors with penalties, including possible suspension from the transit system. The policy goes into effect on Nov. 9.
“Ride with Respect” was prompted by concerns from existing and potential MARTA customers and the policy was drafted with input from scores of community stakeholders.
Under the new code of conduct, prohibited activities include solicitation; selling goods or services; loud music; spitting; littering; eating on transit vehicles; drinking on transit vehicles without re-sealable drink containers; fighting and disruptive behavior – many of which are also violations of state law and could result in arrest.
“Moving forward, MARTA will no longer tolerate bad behavior on our system,” said Frederick L. Daniels, Jr., chairman of the MARTA board. “We are asking the community, elected officials and customers to join us in raising the bar and reinforcing the expectation that everyone deserves a safe, efficient and enjoyable ride on MARTA.”
Keith T. Parker, MARTA’s GM/CEO, said the policy — along with a more robust police presence, new vehicle security cameras and a mobile phone app to report problems — will make MARTA more attractive and help customers feel more comfortable.
“You should have the freedom to sit quietly and enjoy a peaceful ride on MARTA,” Mr. Parker explained. “‘Ride With Respect’ reaffirms our commitment to our customers and employees by curtailing undesirable behavior on our system.”
“Ride with Respect” is a cornerstone of MARTA’s ongoing transformation initiative to change the way it conducts business in order to make the transit system more financially sustainable for the future.