State Police Association: MBTA Is "Shameful"

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — The Massachusetts Police Association has called the MBTA's decision to stop bussing law enforcement officers to and from protests "shameful."

On Saturday, the state police association released a statement saying the agency's move places "needless hurdles to the protection of life and property, and they put the public at large at risk."

"As to the events that were the catalyst for where we are today, let us be very clear: The State Police Association of Massachusetts condemns the abuse of power by police officers," said the statement online. "Our members joined the State Police to uphold the law and keep people safe. Overwhelmingly, these Sergeants and Troopers do so with courage, integrity and professionalism."

The police association's statement also responded to the University of Massachusetts, which said earlier this week it would no longer allow state police to use the Boston campus as a staging area during protests.

"UMASS’s and the MBTA’s actions are shameful and overtly pander to the false rhetoric and anti-police agenda of the few," said the statement. "More important, they fail to support our defense of the peaceful calls for change of the many. "

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority announced on Friday it would "no longer provide transportation for non-MBTA law enforcement personnel to or from public demonstrations," after an agreement was reached by the MBTA's Fiscal and Management Control Board.

The T's announcement also came hours after staff delivered a letter criticizing the agency for providing transport to law enforcement, while closing several stations to the public during this week's widespread protests.

"The MBTA can be a wonderful force for good in the city of Boston, especially for its black population," read a letter circulated by dozens of employees. "Our buses bring economic access, opportunity, and freedom of movement to our bus-dependent riders, who are disproportionately black. For the MBTA to use those very same buses to bring police and their weapons to those very same people is heartbreaking, hypocritical, and embarrassing."

The state police association said its members "put their lives on the line every day to uphold the First Amendment and to ensure peace."

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(Photo: Getty Images)

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