According to a trade union, police officers in Lower Saxony should be able to use local transport free of charge even if they are not wearing a uniform. This could also lead to more safety on trains, as the police union (GdP) announced on request. "Not everyone in the prison service wears a uniform all the time, for example when you work in the investigative service. But these colleagues can also intervene quickly, trained and safely in an emergency if the safety of other passengers is threatened," said a GdP spokesman with.
In Baden-Württemberg, plainclothes police officers carry a police badge, handcuffs and a service weapon with them and can therefore be clearly assigned to the police force. "Especially in times when measures to increase safety in local public transport are being discussed, this should therefore be reconsidered, as has now happened in Schleswig-Holstein. It can also be an incentive to take the bus and train more often," said it from the union.
After the deadly knife attack at the end of January in a regional train in Brokstedt in Schleswig-Holstein, the state government in Kiel announced the first steps to increase safety on trains. This includes, among other things, that plainclothes police officers can use local public transport free of charge if they carry a service weapon with them.
According to the Ministry of the Interior in Hanover, there has been an agreement for years on the free travel of police officers in uniform on Deutsche Bahn trains and in local transport in Lower Saxony. A spokesman said that it is currently being examined whether an extension to free travel in civilian clothing, similar to that in Schleswig-Holstein, would be expedient.
"From the police point of view, it is imperative, in order not to unsettle citizens or encourage dangerous situations, that police officers remain recognizable even in civilian clothing if they make use of the free travel regulation on public transport," it said it further from the Interior Ministry. The police statistics did not reveal any crime hotspots in local public transport.
Green internal politician Michael Lühmann said that the measures from Schleswig-Holstein had to be carefully examined "whether they are not only suitable for increasing the sense of security for passengers, but also actually contribute to safety on the trains."
AfD domestic politician Stephan Bothe said it would make sense if police officers in civilian clothes were also allowed to use local transport free of charge if they carried a service weapon with them. "But how high is the probability that an armed police officer will happen to be present in an emergency and then be able to prevent the worst from happening?" With this measure, passengers in local transport would hardly be better protected from violent criminals than before.