Borough President Diaz and Fernando Mateo Discussed Livery Driver Safety
During a summit with members of car services from The Bronx, borough where three drivers have been killed this year
On Monday, September 14, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. and Fernando Mateo, president of the New York State Federation of Taxi Drivers, hosted a summit to discuss safety and security issues with Bronx’s taxi drivers as an answer to the recent acts of violence, including three murders, against livery cab drivers in the borough.
Dozens of drivers and owners of more than 50 car service companies from The Bronx attended the summit and, among other ideas, suggested the mandatory use of security cameras and partitions or safety screens to improve their safety while behind the wheel. Borough President Diaz proposed the creation of a radio frequency system or police hotline between the taxi drivers and the NYPD as an effective way to offer a better protection to the drivers.
“Taxi drivers provide public transportation 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and 365 days a year, but unfortunately this is a high risk profession with a relatively high homicide rate. We – elected officials, the police department and the community as a whole – need to work together to find and implement the best measures to protect the lives of our taxi drivers,” said Borough President Diaz. Assistant Police Chief Thomas Purtell, Commanding Officer of Patrol Borough Bronx, numerous elected officials and government representatives also participated in the summit, listening to the drivers’ concerns and discussing possible solutions to the violence and abuse against them.
“This emergency summit with the Bronx elected officials is a way to address the safety issues not only of the taxi drivers but of other small business owners that are threatened by thugs that prey on them on a daily basis,” said Fernando Mateo. “Bringing the elected officials together will serve as a reminder to the community that everything that can be done to defend them will be done.”
-On August 17, 46-year-old Ndiaye Amadau was shot once in the chest just after 12:30 a.m. by his passenger at the intersection of Wilson Avenue and Boston Road in Baychester.
-On August 23, José Peña-Segura, a 42-year-old father of four, died at Lincoln Hospital less than an hour after getting shot in Mott Haven.
-On May 10, Roberto Pinta, 37 years old, was shot three times in the back during what police said was a failed robbery attempt by a passenger in Morris Heights.