The New York Civil Liberties Union has brought a federal class-action
lawsuit against the city accusing school safety agents of violating
students' rights. WNYC's Beth Fertig has more.
REPORTER: The suit was filed on behalf of five middle and high school
students who claim they were physically abused and wrongfully arrested
at school. One of them is 13-year-old Daija, who attends the Lou
Gehrig Middle School in the Bronx.
DAIJA: I have always liked school but earlier this year I was
handcuffed and inappropriately handled by a school safety officer.
REPORTER: Daija is known by the initials DY in the court papers to
protect her identity. The lawsuit claims safety agents are overly
aggressive with students. It's seeking to give them better training
and to give principals more control over school discipline. The Civil
Liberties Union and the police department have tangled for years over
these complaints. The NYPD calls the allegations hyperbole and the
city's law department says it's reviewing the case, but that safety agents handle a difficult job with dedication and professionalism.