Seeking to quell an uptick of attacks on Capitol Hill’s LGBTQ community, a small group of anti-crime advocates have started running a shuttle service to get neighborhood residents home safely at night.
The nine-passenger van donated to Social Outreach Seattle made its inaugural run through the neighborhood Thursday night, primarily to start spreading the word on the new service. According to organizers, the donation-based service did not require any special permits to start picking up passengers.
SOSea founder Shaun Knittel said the pilot shuttle will run for the next two months, from 9pm-4am Thursday-Saturday. During the pilot phase, Knittel said the shuttle won’t have any designated stops and will take people right to their door. The plan is to have a series of stops worked out in time for Pride this June, Knittel said.
“Most of the people are getting attacked are alone walking at night,” Knittel said. “(Criminals) are honing their skills and they know who to attack.”
Knittel first announced the shuttle during the recent LGBTQ violence forum at Capitol Hill’s All Pilgrims Church.
Eventually, Knittel said he wants to add several more vans to better serve the neighborhood. Knittel said the drivers will be paid and the suggested donation for a ride is $5.