NEW YORK (AP / WCBS 880) — A dozen livery cab drivers in New York City were getting bulletproof vests under a pilot program.

WCBS 880’s Ginny Kosola reports

The president of the New York Federation of Taxi Drivers, Fernando Mateo, said the vests will provide another layer of protection for drivers in high-crime areas.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg says he doesn’t think it’s necessary. But he says they have the right to wear the vests if they choose.

Mateo says livery drivers are the target of some 300 robberies and assaults each month. The pilot program is being launched in honor of cab driver Cesar Santo, who was fatally shot in June.

Mateo said the vests were being donated by Security USA.

The Federation also was asking retired NYPD officers to donate their old vests.

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