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Budget decisions means Lady Liberty goes without security

Anyone in Albany who has travelled down to New York City knows that there is considerable security everywhere. From hired security at private businesses or hotels to government security at national parks, monuments and museums, security not only helps protect what's inside the building or monument, but also the people visiting. And, with the constant fear of terrorism, it only makes sense that security should be ever-vigilant, not decreasing.

That is not the thought of the National Park Service, however, which has recently decided to remove security from Battery Park and Liberty State Park, the two areas that send passengers to Liberty Island and the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, respectively. New York Senator Chuck Schumer is primarily concerned that this could lead to an act of terrorism and have visitors injured by explosions.

Not only would this be a horrific catastrophe, but it would also expose the National Park Service to significant premises liability lawsuits. While terrorism is certainly something that cannot always be expected or predicted, it is still vitally important for the government to protect people visiting its monuments and historical sites. Some might even argue that it would be negligent to not provide such security.

The National Park Service recently announced its decision to move security screeners to Ellis Island and away from the ferry sites at Battery Park and Liberty State Park. This means that passengers will ostensibly not go through any kind of security check before heading to the Statue of Liberty.

It remains to be seen what prompted the National Park Service's decision to move security forces to Ellis Island.

Source: The New York Post, “Schumer and Kelly Slam New Lady Liberty Security Plan,” Matt McNulty, May 27, 2013

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