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San Francisco Meter Maids Fear Attack, Reduce Ticketing
Attacks on meter maids in San Francisco, California are up -- driving down the number of parking tickets issued.

Meter maid
Residents in San Francisco, California have discovered a means of slowing down the number of parking tickets issued by meter maids in the city. By instilling fear of attack in city employees, the number of citations issued has dropped to a ten-year low.

"If you're in a situation and someone is acting really hostile toward you, after all that stuff they've been through, you'd think twice about giving that $20 ticket or just walking away," Lawanna Preston, staff director of the Service Employees International Union local 790, told the San Francisco Examiner.

Last year, 28 meter maids were assaulted, up from 17 the prior year. Incidents last year included meter maids being punched by angry ticket recipients, verbal threats, and being spat upon by passersby. Meter maids have been given conflict-avoidance training and cans of pepper spray.

Source: Risk of attack may deter officers from writing tickets, union says (San Francisco Examiner (CA), 1/20/2007)

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