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Rise in sexual harassment on public transport should be 'wake-up call,' says TSSA union

A SURGE in reports of sexual harassment on public transport should act as a “wake-up call” to authorities, train drivers’ union the TSSA said today. 

Figures released by the British Transport Police (BTP) the day before showed that reports of harassment shot up this this summer by 63 per cent compared with the same period two years earlier. 

The BTP received 421 reports of harassment between April and October, up from 259 in the same period of 2019.

The force said that it believed the rise to be due to women feeling more confident to report such incidents following high-profile coverage of violence against women. 

Responding to the data, TSSA organising director Lorraine Ward said: “These figures are shocking and should be a wake-up call to police and transport authorities across the country. 

“Women in particular need to feel safe when using our public transport networks and these figures will be alarming to many.”

Transport staff need to be part of the solution to the problems, she added, calling for workers to receive training in how to help improve reporting and conviction rates. 

“Staffing cuts at BTP and among station staff are counter-productive to safety and should be reversed,” Ms Ward said. 

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