At 1 a.m. Wednesday, all of New York City’s 472 subway stations will close for cleaning and police officers will begin removing people experiencing homelessness who have been sleeping on nearly empty trains.
“There is no refusal. They’ll have to get off the subway,” said NYPD Chief of Department Terry Monahan.
More than 1,000 police officers have been assigned to what is the first overnight subway shutdown in at least 50 years.
Officers from the Homeless Outreach Unit, accompanied by nurses, will remove people from subway cars.
Most will be offered space at shelters and in other cases the nurses will decide whether someone needs to be taken to a hospital for their own safety, Monahan said.
“We are prepared for a large sum of individuals who want to accept services, but we’re not going to know until this operation,” said Monahan.