Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs Statement Regarding the Council of the District of Columbia Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety Hearing on the Metro Safety Act of 2023
WASHINGTON, D.C. — In response to a Oct. 11 hearing conducted by the DC Council Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety, Carlos Andino, Associate Counsel, Washington Lawyers’ Committee, issued the following statement.
“The DC Council should not advance the Metro Safety Act of 2023. Increasing policing powers to detain suspected fare evaders is a pretext to stop and frisk people of color, particularly Black people.
“The bill’s real impact is to decrease public safety and to criminalize low-income people of color. Allowing police to detain individuals for fare evasion will lead to more low-income people of color being arrested. There is no evidence to support that stricter fare evasion enforcement will improve public safety.
“The Council should not use fare evaders as scapegoats for Metro’s financial well-being or safety troubles. The Council should focus on real evidence-based solutions.”
Read the full testimony here.
Watch the Carlos Andino’s testimony here.