Too Close for Comfort

I hope reps from WMATA are reading these stories about harassment on Metro because it’s becoming too frequent. This story is tame compared to other ones that I’ve contributed and ones others have contributed, but it’s still annoying.

This morning [Monday, June 1] I was at Rhode Island Metro waiting for a train to Shady Grove, listening to my MP3 and staring off into space. I’m standing directly behind the bumpy section of the tiles, which I felt was at a decent distance to wait for the train. There weren’t too many passengers waiting on the platform and there was plenty of room for people to walk behind me.

Out of the blue I felt a presence blocking my line of vision and caught me off guard. Too close for comfort a Metro employee (I assume by how he was dressed that he was a custodian) walked directly past me, along the bumpy tiles/lights. He stared at me for a quick second before mumbling “Hi, howya doin’?” If that guy were one inch closer he probably would’ve been rubbing against me as he walked…ew.

“Ew,” I said. “Dude, you are TOO CLOSE!”

He mumbled something under his breath and continued on his way, but was now walking further from the edge of the platform, closer to the stalls and benches. Honestly, what was his intention for doing that? Was he trying to scare me?! Why did he need to be so close up on me?! Nasty creep.

This happened at about 9:05 this morning (6/1/09) at Rhode Island Avenue Metro.

WMATA, are you reading these stories? You really need to do something about these creepy employees and passengers sexually harassing us! Your fares are too expensive for us to be putting up with this mess!

Location: Rhode Island Avenue Metro

Submitted by Anonymous
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4 Responses

  1. WMATA
    | Reply

    The internet is a great way for us to discuss issues and policies directly with customers. We welcome that, and we also welcome direct feedback about your Metro experience via our customer service line.

    Anytime you have a complaint about your Metro experience, please let US know about it directly. That way we can document it, investigate the complaint and come to a resolution. We make that easy enough to do by internet and e-mail (http://www.wmata.com/about_metro/contact_us/ridercomment.cfm ) and telephone and postal mail (http://www.wmata.com/about_metro/contact.cfm)

    We want to provide exceptional service, and you can help us do that by reporting issues to us via the customer service line. Then, there’s a formal record, we can identify trends, and put fixes in place. Please help us as by providing as much information about the problem as you are comfortable with and telling us directly when you find something wrong.

    Thanks
    WMATA

  2. Unsuck DC Metro
    | Reply

    This is pretty much their standard response. I think we have pretty much the same verbiage on our site somewhere.
    Can see their point. If they don’t know about it, how can they fix it.
    The ideal solution would be for people with a complaint to CC WMATA when they write to us.

  3. […] Holla Back DC! finds a “nasty creep” at the Rhode Island Metro station. Bonus: He works for WMATA. In case you missed it, we’ve […]

  4. Golden Silence
    | Reply

    Can see their point. If they don’t know about it, how can they fix it.
    The ideal solution would be for people with a complaint to CC WMATA when they write to us.

    True, and I have reported harassing employees using their complaint form numerous times in the past, but I felt that they didn’t take my complaints seriously. One was back in I believe 2007, and I reported two employees hanging out at the train station who pointed at me and said “Ooh, I wanna get wit’ dat.” All I got were calls from various WMATA employees, giving me the runaround and asking the same questions over and over. When the last person called asking the same questions, I said “I’ve told three other people from WMATA the same thing—when will any action ever be taken?!” I got a wimpy apology and they hung up. I hadn’t heard back from anyone since.

    Now I see where the woman who reported the kissing noises at Silver Spring Metro is coming from. What’s the point of reporting WMATA employees if WMATA doesn’t take action? I’d think that by them being aware of the stories posted on HBDC and Unsuck DC Metro that they’d think, “This is a problem. Let’s do sexual harassment prevention training” or something. Take some kind of action.

    The stock response they left here gives me the impression that “We know stuff is going on with WMATA employees harassing women, but we’re not going to do anything about it.”

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