As MTA launches new courtesy campaign, a new state law requires MTA to be nice to riders

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Hopefully courtesy is contagious.

In January, the MTA will roll out a new campaign designed to highlight proper train and bus behavior. Some of the images have already been released and are sparking conversation. Subway blogger Eddie Going says riders need to pay attention on the trains and buses.

The MTA also has to be nice. A new state law has taken effect this month that requires the MTA to to provide better customer service by clearly communicating to riders what their rights are as customers.

New York State Assemblymember Ron Kim (D-Flushing, Queens) sponsored the bill, which was passed by the legislature and approved by Governor Cuomo. It became law on December 17, 2014.

The MTA worked with lawmakers on the details. The agency, a few years ago, started using a 511 customer service number.

The law requires having an easy to find customer service number for riders and the MTA agrees to the following pledge:

  1. A commitment that employees will provide service in a courteous manner;
  2. A description of the Authority’s commitment to provide timely and a description of the authority’s commitment to maintain clean stations, facilities, subways, and buses;
  3. A description of the authority’s policies when it comes to arranging alternative transportation when service is interrupted;
  4. When service is interrupted, a description of the authority’s policies when it comes to considering the comfort of inconvenienced customers;
  5. When service is interrupted due to weather conditions; A description of the authority’s policies on notifying customers.
  6. When services is severely interrupted, a description of the authority’s policies on service restoration.
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