Transit Ambassadors. Photo courtesy of Long Beach Transit.
Long Beach Transit users may start noticing the presence of uniformed security officers riding with them, that’s because they are part of a pilot Transit Ambassador Program that just launched, LBT officials announced earlier this week.
Known as Transit Ambassadors, the officers are state-registered security officers contracted with Allied Universal Security Services and have specialized public transit training. They will provide on-bus security support and customer service, according to officials.
“The presence of the Transit Ambassadors onboard LBT’s buses will aid in enhancing the customer experience as well as improving safety and service quality,” LBT Chief Executive Officer Kenneth McDonald said in a statement. “These Transit Ambassadors will be visible to our customers, available to assist and help mitigate problems if they occur.”
The pilot program addresses one of LBT’s Strategic Priorities, which is to “enhance customer experience,” said LBT spokesman Paul Gonzales in an email. That also includes helping customers with wayfinding and other needs as they occur.
Gonzales said that the Long Beach Police Department (LBPD) currently provides seven officers and one sergeant to help police the 100-square-mile LBT bus system. Uniformed officers and Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department (LASD) deputies in any of the 13 cities that LBT services can also be called upon if there is a need, he added.
In addition, all LBT buses have cameras installed to help “keep track of activity throughout the bus, the bike racks on the front of the bus, and at bus stops when passengers board and alight,” according to the LBT website.
“We consider LBT to be well-policed and our customers are well protected in accordance with our commitment of safety being our top priority,” Gonzales said.