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RURALTRANSPORTATION
Planning with not for:
Rural Transportation and Equity
Carrie Kissel
National Association of Development
Organizations and NADO Research Foundation
RURALTRANSPORTATION
About NADO
 National association for 540 regional development
organizations, including emerging network of Rural
Transportation Planning Organizations (RTPOs or RPOs)
 Promote public policies that strengthen local governments,
communities and economies through the regional strategies,
coordination efforts and program expertise of the nation’s
regional development organizations
RURALTRANSPORTATION
3Image source: Washington Post, Jan 3, 2020
RURALTRANSPORTATION
4
RURALTRANSPORTATION
5
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Aging Rural Places
6
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Rural Migration
7
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Increasing Rural Diversity
• Rural minorities are 22% of the population in 2017 (compared to
42% in urban areas), but diversity is increasing. USDA ERS: Rural
America At-a-Glance 2018
8
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Rural Poverty
• Rural poverty occurs at higher rates than urban poverty
– Rural: 16.4% in 2017 (down from 30-yr peak of 18.4% in 2013)
– Urban: 12.9% in 2017
• Rural racial/ethnic minorities had the highest poverty rates
– 2017: black 32%, Native American 31%, Hispanic 24.5%
– Poverty among whites was 13.5%, but whites made up 80
percent of the rural poor in 2017
Source: USDA ERS, Rural America At-a-Glance 2018
9
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Compliance
• Environmental Justice:
– Avoid, minimize, or mitigate disproportionately high and adverse human health
and environmental effects, including social and economic effects, on minority
populations and low-income populations (FTA Circular:
www.transit.dot.gov/sites/fta.dot.gov/files/docs/FTA_EJ_Circular_7.14-
12_FINAL.pdf)
• Title VI of the Civil Rights Act:
– Prohibits discrimination by recipients of Federal financial assistance on the basis of
race, color, and national origin, including the denial of meaningful access for
limited English proficient (LEP) persons (FTA Circular:
www.transit.dot.gov/sites/fta.dot.gov/files/docs/FTA_Title_VI_FINAL.pdf)
• Americans with Disabilities Act:
– Prohibits discrimination and ensures equal opportunity and access for persons
with disabilities (FTA Circular:
www.transit.dot.gov/sites/fta.dot.gov/files/docs/Final_FTA_ADA_Circular_C_4710.
1.pdf)
10
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Beyond Compliance
• Equity & justice work
– Doesn’t discriminate, avoids disproportionate effects, but also…
– Has a broad lens on fair treatment, meaningful participation, and
removing barriers, beyond those identified in Title VI, EJ, ADA
– Internal organizational policies and processes
• Hiring, dress codes, leave policies, communications, workplace
evaluations, procurement, board/committee recruitment
– External programming
• Public outreach/input gathering, information sharing, participation in
programs/services or benefit from outcomes of programs
11
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Concepts in equity & justice work
• Everyone benefits from support or removal of barriers at
least some of the time; who benefits from what kinds of
support might change over time
• Individual characteristics such as race, class, gender,
sexuality, age, health & disability status, educational
attainment, English language proficiency, religion,
immigration status intersect and shape people’s lives
– Intersectionality: experience differs based on individual,
characteristics and identity, and context (Crenshaw)
12
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Concepts in equity & justice work
• Agency: capacity of individuals/groups to act independently
• Look for ways to engage people as:
– Producers
– Consumers
– Investors
– Entrepreneurs
– Planners
– Beneficiaries
• All of whom have a role and a stake in the programs you work
with and can contribute to its success
13
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Concepts in equity & justice work
• Implicit bias, explicit bias, and stereotyping about others
(and what others need) affect our work
• Intent vs. Impact
– Sometimes we offend without meaning to
– But it still causes harm
– It’s a learning process
• We can mitigate biases
14
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Doing equity & justice work
• Build relationships with people/organizations already
working in communities
• Plan for authentic engagement
– Make it easy to provide input
– Be open about what happens with that input
– Acknowledge agency: offer opportunities to shape the future
• Make sure there is a value proposition for them to work
with you… The perspectives of diverse participants will
improve your work. How are you improving theirs?
15
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Doing equity & justice work
• Honor the lived experience of community members
– Recognize that community members might have had negative
interactions that shape their perspective
• Include space to share stories
– People tell stories about issues/events that are significant to
them… Stories indicate meaning
• Listen for and acknowledge past pitfalls
• Focus on desired outcomes of community members
16
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Now what?
 Look for local/regional data; find out the “who”
 Not just EJ, Title VI, ADA populations, but look broadly at who has power,
influence, and access
 ID partners, build relationships
 Include individuals from historically marginalized populations in
decision-making bodies
 Make planning processes accessible to anyone
 Build in accountability
 Prioritize collaborative problem solving
 Analyze internal processes + programs for ways to improve
consideration of equity!
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Questions to consider in transportation
• Internal processes: comprehensive equity audit will show
things like:
– Who are we reaching in our hiring practices and
board/committee make-up? Who are we missing?
– Are there barriers that would make it less likely for diverse
candidates for employment or board/committee leadership to be
successful?
– Would they/do they stay over time, viewing their contributions
as meaningful?
18
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Connecting Equity and Transportation
• External programs/service delivery: Who are our customers?
How are we connecting to them? How do we get feedback on
our existing products and services or new ones? Do our staff
need training to better serve diverse populations? Is our
language accessible, and are our processes clear?
• Can we better address equity & justice in deliverables?
– Public participation plan?
– Project prioritization?
– TIP/LRTP/other transportation plans?
– Performance measurement?
– Operational decisions?
19
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Goals of equity & justice work
Adapted from educational equity models:
• Recognize biases and inequities
• Respond in the short-term
• Address biases & barriers over time
• Create & sustain equitable environment
20
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Resources
• Data
– USDA Economic Research Service (look for economy and policy maps,
and Atlas of Rural and Small Town America)
– Stats America (custom region builder tool)
• Engagement
– The Community Engagement Guide for Sustainable Communities,
PolicyLink
– Orton Family Foundation Community Heart & Soul
• Ideas for internal/external policies and programs
– Conscious Style Guide (inclusive language)
– Kirwan Institute (implicit bias, inclusivity training)
– Central Appalachian Network Org. Policy Webinar
21
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Connect with NADO
Carrie Kissel, Associate Director
ckissel@nado.org | 202.643.9560
Visit us online: www.NADO.org
www.RuralTransportation.org | www.CEDScentral.com
In-person events:
National Regional Transportation Conference, 7/28 – 30, 2020,
Kansas City, MO
NADO Annual Training Conference, 10/17 - 20, 2020, Cleveland,
OH
22
RURALTRANSPORTATION
23
RURALTRANSPORTATION
Rural Social Mobility
• A 2018 study found 6 characteristics that support upward
mobility for rural youth:
– A high expectation that youth will work hard to acquire skills
– Strong, informal support systems
– An early focus on career pathways
– Opportunities to build life skills, regardless of community size
– Many potential challenges to accessing opportunities, but creative
solutions for overcoming them
– A sense of shared fate and a deep commitment to sustaining the
community
• Source: Social Mobility in Rural America: Insights from Communities Whose Young People
Are Climbing the Income Ladder 24

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Planning with not for: Rural transportation and equity

  • 1. RURALTRANSPORTATION Planning with not for: Rural Transportation and Equity Carrie Kissel National Association of Development Organizations and NADO Research Foundation
  • 2. RURALTRANSPORTATION About NADO  National association for 540 regional development organizations, including emerging network of Rural Transportation Planning Organizations (RTPOs or RPOs)  Promote public policies that strengthen local governments, communities and economies through the regional strategies, coordination efforts and program expertise of the nation’s regional development organizations
  • 8. RURALTRANSPORTATION Increasing Rural Diversity • Rural minorities are 22% of the population in 2017 (compared to 42% in urban areas), but diversity is increasing. USDA ERS: Rural America At-a-Glance 2018 8
  • 9. RURALTRANSPORTATION Rural Poverty • Rural poverty occurs at higher rates than urban poverty – Rural: 16.4% in 2017 (down from 30-yr peak of 18.4% in 2013) – Urban: 12.9% in 2017 • Rural racial/ethnic minorities had the highest poverty rates – 2017: black 32%, Native American 31%, Hispanic 24.5% – Poverty among whites was 13.5%, but whites made up 80 percent of the rural poor in 2017 Source: USDA ERS, Rural America At-a-Glance 2018 9
  • 10. RURALTRANSPORTATION Compliance • Environmental Justice: – Avoid, minimize, or mitigate disproportionately high and adverse human health and environmental effects, including social and economic effects, on minority populations and low-income populations (FTA Circular: www.transit.dot.gov/sites/fta.dot.gov/files/docs/FTA_EJ_Circular_7.14- 12_FINAL.pdf) • Title VI of the Civil Rights Act: – Prohibits discrimination by recipients of Federal financial assistance on the basis of race, color, and national origin, including the denial of meaningful access for limited English proficient (LEP) persons (FTA Circular: www.transit.dot.gov/sites/fta.dot.gov/files/docs/FTA_Title_VI_FINAL.pdf) • Americans with Disabilities Act: – Prohibits discrimination and ensures equal opportunity and access for persons with disabilities (FTA Circular: www.transit.dot.gov/sites/fta.dot.gov/files/docs/Final_FTA_ADA_Circular_C_4710. 1.pdf) 10
  • 11. RURALTRANSPORTATION Beyond Compliance • Equity & justice work – Doesn’t discriminate, avoids disproportionate effects, but also… – Has a broad lens on fair treatment, meaningful participation, and removing barriers, beyond those identified in Title VI, EJ, ADA – Internal organizational policies and processes • Hiring, dress codes, leave policies, communications, workplace evaluations, procurement, board/committee recruitment – External programming • Public outreach/input gathering, information sharing, participation in programs/services or benefit from outcomes of programs 11
  • 12. RURALTRANSPORTATION Concepts in equity & justice work • Everyone benefits from support or removal of barriers at least some of the time; who benefits from what kinds of support might change over time • Individual characteristics such as race, class, gender, sexuality, age, health & disability status, educational attainment, English language proficiency, religion, immigration status intersect and shape people’s lives – Intersectionality: experience differs based on individual, characteristics and identity, and context (Crenshaw) 12
  • 13. RURALTRANSPORTATION Concepts in equity & justice work • Agency: capacity of individuals/groups to act independently • Look for ways to engage people as: – Producers – Consumers – Investors – Entrepreneurs – Planners – Beneficiaries • All of whom have a role and a stake in the programs you work with and can contribute to its success 13
  • 14. RURALTRANSPORTATION Concepts in equity & justice work • Implicit bias, explicit bias, and stereotyping about others (and what others need) affect our work • Intent vs. Impact – Sometimes we offend without meaning to – But it still causes harm – It’s a learning process • We can mitigate biases 14
  • 15. RURALTRANSPORTATION Doing equity & justice work • Build relationships with people/organizations already working in communities • Plan for authentic engagement – Make it easy to provide input – Be open about what happens with that input – Acknowledge agency: offer opportunities to shape the future • Make sure there is a value proposition for them to work with you… The perspectives of diverse participants will improve your work. How are you improving theirs? 15
  • 16. RURALTRANSPORTATION Doing equity & justice work • Honor the lived experience of community members – Recognize that community members might have had negative interactions that shape their perspective • Include space to share stories – People tell stories about issues/events that are significant to them… Stories indicate meaning • Listen for and acknowledge past pitfalls • Focus on desired outcomes of community members 16
  • 17. RURALTRANSPORTATION Now what?  Look for local/regional data; find out the “who”  Not just EJ, Title VI, ADA populations, but look broadly at who has power, influence, and access  ID partners, build relationships  Include individuals from historically marginalized populations in decision-making bodies  Make planning processes accessible to anyone  Build in accountability  Prioritize collaborative problem solving  Analyze internal processes + programs for ways to improve consideration of equity!
  • 18. RURALTRANSPORTATION Questions to consider in transportation • Internal processes: comprehensive equity audit will show things like: – Who are we reaching in our hiring practices and board/committee make-up? Who are we missing? – Are there barriers that would make it less likely for diverse candidates for employment or board/committee leadership to be successful? – Would they/do they stay over time, viewing their contributions as meaningful? 18
  • 19. RURALTRANSPORTATION Connecting Equity and Transportation • External programs/service delivery: Who are our customers? How are we connecting to them? How do we get feedback on our existing products and services or new ones? Do our staff need training to better serve diverse populations? Is our language accessible, and are our processes clear? • Can we better address equity & justice in deliverables? – Public participation plan? – Project prioritization? – TIP/LRTP/other transportation plans? – Performance measurement? – Operational decisions? 19
  • 20. RURALTRANSPORTATION Goals of equity & justice work Adapted from educational equity models: • Recognize biases and inequities • Respond in the short-term • Address biases & barriers over time • Create & sustain equitable environment 20
  • 21. RURALTRANSPORTATION Resources • Data – USDA Economic Research Service (look for economy and policy maps, and Atlas of Rural and Small Town America) – Stats America (custom region builder tool) • Engagement – The Community Engagement Guide for Sustainable Communities, PolicyLink – Orton Family Foundation Community Heart & Soul • Ideas for internal/external policies and programs – Conscious Style Guide (inclusive language) – Kirwan Institute (implicit bias, inclusivity training) – Central Appalachian Network Org. Policy Webinar 21
  • 22. RURALTRANSPORTATION Connect with NADO Carrie Kissel, Associate Director ckissel@nado.org | 202.643.9560 Visit us online: www.NADO.org www.RuralTransportation.org | www.CEDScentral.com In-person events: National Regional Transportation Conference, 7/28 – 30, 2020, Kansas City, MO NADO Annual Training Conference, 10/17 - 20, 2020, Cleveland, OH 22
  • 24. RURALTRANSPORTATION Rural Social Mobility • A 2018 study found 6 characteristics that support upward mobility for rural youth: – A high expectation that youth will work hard to acquire skills – Strong, informal support systems – An early focus on career pathways – Opportunities to build life skills, regardless of community size – Many potential challenges to accessing opportunities, but creative solutions for overcoming them – A sense of shared fate and a deep commitment to sustaining the community • Source: Social Mobility in Rural America: Insights from Communities Whose Young People Are Climbing the Income Ladder 24