Commuter Complains About People Sleeping on Station Seating

A commuter contacted Patch to share his concern about people sleeping on benches at the Summit station.

A local commuter who uses the Summit train station emailed Patch to share a complaint about people sleeping on the waiting area benches in the morning.

I have taken this [complaint] to New Jersey Transit and the NJ Transit Police. Sometimes the notice is ignored, sometimes they call the Summit police, and they sometimes walk through the station, but never ask anyone to leave or get up.

Once, they did ask to see everyones' train ticket, but did not ask those without one to leave. The situation gets much worse when the weather gets colder. More and more people camp out in the station overnight.

Today, there were 7 people sleeping on the benches in the station and there were no available seats for me, at 4:50am this morning. And I pay $284 per month for my train pass.

In addition, one of the unfortunate souls was awake playing his raido very loudly and expounding racial slurs and violent threats to all in the station.

The photos attached where from just this morning (Friday, Sept. 21) but go there any morning at 4:30am and it looks like a homeless shelter. 


— John Dyon


What do you think? Is there a problem with people sleeping in the train station waiting area? If so, what should be done about it? Share your thoughts in the comments box below, or email Summit Patch your thoughts.

Hilltopper81 September 25, 2012 at 03:40 AM
Actually M&GMom, they DO have several places to go. The problem is that most homeless shelters have rules that some folks are not willing to follow. Among them are no tolerance of drugs or alcohol. The result is that some of the people you find in the train station can be dangerous. I'm not trying to kick anyone to the curb; just to a place where they will be safer as will users of the train station. The train station is the primary responsibility of the NJ Transit Police, But Summit Police often respond to a crime or potential crime in progress as well as medical emergencies. Ask any Summit Police officer how many calls they get at the station. Not the kind of incident that makes the local news, but it does happen and quite often.
EWZ2011 September 25, 2012 at 08:41 PM
I feel for this people who for one reason or another end up sleeping at the train station, at the same time I also think that the safety of the NJ Transit users should be a matter of consideration. This problem is not new, I used to take the train to go to school many years ago and I was always afraid for my safety. What is a small girl to do when there is a huge man yelling out obscenities, among other odd behavior. This situation is complex, the homeless people need help and support, but the Summit residents deserve to feel safe.
CAMERON September 26, 2012 at 01:57 AM
Very sad homeless must sleep. But also has been a drug buyer hangout. Also very sad that you can't sit and wait for your train that I think is unfair. Also very loud music
m m December 06, 2012 at 11:54 AM
I see these people they need a s place to sleep and to be warm they dont cause anyone any trouble i have never seen them approach anyone.. There by=ut for the grace of God go any of us a little charity and empathy ..... peace be with you all
B December 11, 2012 at 03:48 PM
Why don't they camp out at the municipal building? Why, because they can't. It's up to NJ Transit to enforce the rules at their station. I agree though, they need to find somewhere else to park themselves. They smell and are very loud. :)


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