SBB’s RailFair prevention programme was introduced in 2003 and derives from the realisation that presence, awareness, and conflict mediation can prevent uncivilised behaviour and violence. The basic idea is “don’t look away”. Today, around 230 dedicated volunteers at 17 different locations act as station guardians, ensuring that the public feel safe at railway stations thanks to their presence.
Stations are places for meeting others. They are among the most frequented areas used by the public. The aim of the RailFair programme is to increase the quality of people’s time at the station, reduce the risk of crime, and thereby increase the subjective sense of security felt by customers.
The programme takes place in partnership with the cities and municipalities where it is run. RailFair is also a member of ‘benevol Schweiz’, the umbrella organisation for volunteer work in Switzerland, and adheres to the general framework defined in the benevol standards.
Your presence at the station can help passengers and passers-by feel more secure. You will be on the move at the station in pairs for three hours at a time, acting in line with the motto ‘Observe, help and report’. As you go about your task, you will be promoting mutual respect, communicating rules, reporting aggression, vandalism and dirtiness, and you will be available to provide assistance and information to passengers. You decide how often you want to be out and about. It is possible to do up to eight assignments per month.
The public very much appreciates your commitment. Attending the free basic training course will give you a good introduction to being a station guardian. You will also receive an expense allowance for each assignment and, each year, the sum of money needed for the purchase of a Half Fare Travelcard. As a token of our appreciation and in order to promote team spirit among the volunteers, we also organise an outing or an end-of-year dinner.
We advertise placement opportunities on Benevol-Jobs, the benevol Schweiz volunteer platform.
According to the Federal Administrative Court, station premises are public spaces. Their accessibility for the public means that the local police are responsible for security, together with SBB. That is why SBB, together with the authorities, operates station guardianships where the situation requires it.
Are you, as a local authority, in a situation where you need another security tool, and would you like to offer opportunities for volunteers? Programme management at RailFair will be happy to present the station guardianship programme and the collaboration project to you in more detail.