Transportation and Equity Anita Hairston, Senior Associate PolicyLink Solutions for Sustainable Communities 2011 Learning ConferenceWashington, DC September 27, 2011 1
About PolicyLink PolicyLink is a national research and action institute advancing economic and social equity by Lifting Up What Works®.
What Is Equity?
Transportation Equity in America
Inadequate Transportation Access and High Costs Stifle Access to Opportunity:
Transportation is the second largest expense for households in the United States, costing more than food, clothing, and health care.
The poorest fifth of Americans spend 42% of their annual household budget on automobile ownership—more than twice the national average.
Nearly two-thirds of all residents in small towns and rural communities have few if any transportation options: 41% have no access to transit; and another 25% live in areas with below-average transit services.
Transportation Equity in America Fewer Economic Opportunities Associated with Building Our Nation’s Infrastructure: In the transportation construction industry, only 6% of employees are African American and 2.5% are women, far below their shares of the U.S. workforce.
Of the $48 billion in Recovery Act funds that the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) awarded to states for highway construction in 2009, only 2% went to people of color owned or disadvantaged businesses, well below the USDOT goal of 10%.
Transportation Equity in America Communities Struggle to Provide Affordable, Reliable Public Transit: In more than 110 cities, public transit routes that residents depend on to get to work, shop, or take their children to school are at risk. According to the American Public Transportation Association, more than 80% of the nation’s transit systems are considering or have recently enacted fare increases or service cuts, including reductions in rush-hour service, off-peak service and geographic coverage
Transportation Equity in America Past Transportation Practices Have Created Disproportionate Health Impacts on Disadvantaged Communities: Nationwide, 61% of African American children, 67% of Asian American children, and 69% of Latino children live in areas that exceed air quality standards for ozone, compared with 50.8% of white children. Hispanics suffer a pedestrian death rate 62% higher than non-Hispanic whites, and African Americans have an even higher rate at almost 70% compared to non-Hispanic whites.
Transportation: A 20th Century Civil Rights Issue Critical Role of Transportation in Civil Rights Movement
Rosa Parks & Montgomery Bus Boycott.
Freedom Riders – challenged state segregation laws by riding public transportation into the South.
Busing as vehicle to promote school desegregation.
A. Philip Randolph– organized African American rail road workers.
Plessy vs. Ferguson
Toward a More Just and Equitable Transportation System -- Bus Depot www.contractdesign.com www.weact.org
Clean and Safe Ports Source: USDOT
Great Communities Collaborative The goal of the Collaborative is for all people in the Bay Area to live in complete communities, affordable across all incomes, with nearby access to quality transit by 2030.
Seattle/King County “Our economy depends on the ability of everyone to contribute, and we should remove barriers that limit the ability of some to fulfill their potential. When all can participate, we can have true competition that leads to excellence. Our recent Equity and Social Justice Ordinance ensures that equity and social justice are part of the very fabric of our daily work at King County, and it is the next step in advancing the efforts of county employees to remove barriers to equity." -- King County Executive Dow Constantine
Interstate 64/St. Louis, MO
MODOT allocated $2.5 million for:
Workforce diversity program
27% of work hours completed by people of color and women
90 apprentices gained highway construction training
80 Disadvantaged Business Enterprises received contracts with MoDOT
Transit Dependence in Central Corridor
11-mile corridor linking Twin Cities
$1 billion ($957M) investment
Projected to have Weekday Ridership of over 40,000 by 2030.
Civic Engagement PolicyLink definition: Civic engagement consists of self renewing, collective efforts by residents, organizations, and communities aimed at improving lives and strengthening communities. Should reflect both process and results. Models of engagement
Resident engagement by mayors:
City’s master plans: Mayor Williams in Youngtown, Ohio; Cory Booker in Newark, New Jersey; Ron Sims in Kings County; Ron Dellums in Oakland, California.
Resident mobilization for grocery stores: West Fresno Food Max & Market Creek Plaza.
Transportation = Opportunity
Every $1 billion invested in public transportation capital/operations creates or supports: 36,000 jobs $3.6 billion in business sales Nearly $500 million in federal, state and local tax revenues (Economic Development Research Group)
Repair work on roads and bridges generates 16% more jobs than construction of new roads and bridges. (Political Economy Research Institute at the University of Mass.)
The Next Transportation Authorization: Working for Equitable Reform Transportation for America is the largest, most diverse coalition working for a bold new vision for transportation that guarantees our freedom to move however we choose and leads to a stronger economy, greater energy security, cleaner environment, and a healthier America for all of us. The Equity Caucus at Transportation for America — formed by the nation’s leading civil rights, community development, racial justice, economic justice, faith-based, health, housing, labor, environmental justice, tribal, public interest, women’s, and transportation organizations — drives transportation policies that advance economic and social equity in America.PolicyLink serves as Chair of the Equity Caucus at Transportation for America.
Members of the Equity Caucus at Transportation for America
Equity Caucus Policy Principles Create affordable transportation options for all people. Ensure fair access to quality jobs, workforce development, and contracting opportunities in the transportation industry. Promote healthy, safe, and inclusive communities. Invest equitably and focus on results.
Policy Idea #1 Affordable Transportation Options for All People Preserve and expand resources for biking, walking, and public transportation Give local communities flexibility to use federal funds to help operate local public transportation systems
Policy Idea #2 Job Access and Job Quality Establish a Construction Careers Program Create a Youth Transit Jobs Corps Expand On the Job Training Program
Policy Idea #3 Healthy, Safe, and Inclusive Communities Complete Streets Safe Routes to School Clean and Safe Ports Health Impact Assessment Pilot Projects Sustainable Communities Funding
Policy Idea #4 Invest Equitably and Focus on Results Strategic planning that leads to better outcomes and more accountable decision making Strengthen civil rights enforcement
Healthy Communities, Strong Regions, A Prosperous America November 8-11, 2011 Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center For more information and registration visit: www.PolicyLink.org/Summit 24
Resources PolicyLink www.policylink.org (Publications : All Aboard!: Making Equity and Inclusion Central to Federal Transportation Policy; The Transportation Prescription: Bold New Ideas for Healthy, Equitable Transportation Reform in America; and An Engine of Opportunity: A User’s Guide to Advocate for Transportation Equity in the 2009 Recovery Act) Back of the Bus: Race, Mass Transit and Inequality http://www.transportationnation.org/backofthebus/ Beyond the Motor City: http://video.pbs.org/video/1409024983/ Equity Caucus at Transportation for America www.t4america.org/equitycaucus
For More Information Anita M. HairstonPolicyLinkanita@policylink.org202-906-8034