Reporting Joe Gomez
HOUSTON (CBSDFW.COM) – The Houston Police Officer’s Union has adopted a cab program aimed at curbing drunk driving among police officers. The program was inspired by a similar program in place in Dallas.
Ray Hunt, the President of Houston Police Officer’s Union, says the union contracted through Yellow Cab to provide prepaid cards to all officers. If an officer finds himself intoxicated, a free ride will be provided to the officer’s residence.
“They can contact Yellow Cab and use that card just like a credit card,” said Hunt to KRLD. “No questions asked, and we pay for that through our union.”
Hunt says the union rolled out a pilot program in September to test the idea, and so far, the reviews have been positive.
“It’s been very well received by our officers, and Mothers Against Drunk Driving got behind it here,” said Hunt.
The Dallas Police Association has been operating a similar program locally for a few years, in which officers are provided a key fob used to bill the association. Ron Pinkston, President of the Dallas Police Association, says that the Houston union reached out to him for guidance.
“When Houston started this, they reached out to us and gathered information about how our program works and how successful it has been, and they decided they were going to try it to,” says Pinkston.
Though Hunt didn’t provide specific details on how frequently the Houston program has been used, he did say that, over the first four months, their initial deposit of $5,000 has been more than enough.
Now he’s just hoping the introduction of their program might inspire others to follow suit.
“We weren’t going public to toot our own horn,” said Pinkston. “We were going public in the hope that other corporations and other businesses would do something similar for their employees or members and we can cut down on drunk driving.”
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