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TransPeninne Express calls on Railway Guardians to help tackle harassment

TransPennine Express (TPE) is asking customers and colleagues to come together and act as Railway Guardians to raise awareness of, and tackle, harassment and sexual assault on the railway.

Working with British Transport Police (BTP) and colleagues from across the rail industry, TPE is urging all rail users to look out for each other, challenge problematic behaviour and report incidents to the police.

Kathryn O’Brien, Customer Service and Operations Director at TransPennine Express said:

“The railway is a safe place and, thankfully, instances of harassment and sexual assault are rare. But, when they do happen, they can be extremely frightening and can have a long-lasting effect on those involved.

“We all have a part to play in helping to keep each other safe and I’m pleased we’re able to work with our colleagues at British Transport Police to raise awareness of this important issue.”

TPE and BTP are asking rail users to download the free Railway Guardian app which has been developed by BTP and provides information on what to do if you witness or are a victim of harassment or sexual offences. The app also provides a platform to discreetly report problematic behaviour and allows the user to share their location with trusted contacts and for those contacts to be notified when the user arrives at their specified destination.

Sergeant Steve O’Callaghan, BTP liaison officer at TPE, said:

“Customers are our eyes and ears on the railway, and we need everyone to be aware of what’s going on around them and to reporting incidents – just a small action could be make the difference in preventing someone being a victim of crime.

“If you see an incident occurring or have any concerns, speak to a member of staff or the police, or report it using the Railway Guardian app – you can also text BTP discreetly using 61016. Anything that makes you feel uncomfortable is worth reporting and we take all reports seriously. Of course, if it is an emergency, always call 999.

“The rail industry works closely together to keep customers and staff as safe as possible on trains and at stations and the crime on the network is relatively rare. But we cannot afford to be complacent and want everyone to feel comfortable when travelling on the network; to achieve this we all need to play our part.”

To help land the message TPE has issued a series of four videos showing real-life situations faced by customers on the network. The videos, which will be released on social media channels, are told from the perspective of either victims of crime or witnesses and highlight the difference rail users can make in keeping people safe from problematic behaviour.

The Railway Guardian app is available in the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

More information on how TPE keeps station, trains and customers safe can be found at: Safety & Security | TransPennine Express (