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Private Security Guards’ Treatment of Homeless & Vicarious Liability

The Boston Globe recently exposed a troubling and systemic pattern of private security guards abusing the homeless at TD Garden in Boston. In the wake of a recent assault on a disabled homeless man, private security guards who patrol TD Garden can no longer eject homeless people from the premises. State MBTA Transit Police will expand their coverage of TD Garden, which operates as a sporting/event complex and is located directly above the North Station commuter rail.

The MBTA, Boston Police, and TD Garden recently met with Allied Universal – the private security company hired by TD Garden – to discuss “new standards, staffing and jurisdictions” in the wake of the pattern of abuse. The Boston Globe’s investigation raised concerns of whether the private security officers received adequate training and whether Allied Universal implemented a clear directive regarding its policy concerning interaction with homeless individuals.

On December 22, an Allied employee allegedly shoved a disabled homeless man into a door and struck the man with his own cane, according to surveillance video captured by MBTA officials. The employee, who has since been fired and arrested, claims the homeless man swung first.

An employer such as Allied Universal can be held legally responsible for the bad actions or omissions of its employees. Additionally, an employer can be held liable if it is shown that it was negligent in the hiring or retention of an employee. These laws ensure that corporations such as Allied Universal implement reasonable care in the hiring and training of its employees and the creation of its policies.

For decades, the experienced attorneys at Swartz & Lynch have provided legal representation to victims of negligence. If you have been injured because of the negligence of another, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.

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