Voices from the Edge 08-25-11 Getting on board with a fair transit policy

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Thu, 08/25/2011 - 12:00am

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by dmazza001

Getting on board with a fair transit policy

a protest sign says why pay more 4 less?As TriMet begins considering fares for a new fiscal year, some community members are calling on the transit authority to address inequities between MAX and bus transfer policies that hurt working class families relying on bus service. While MAX transfers are valid two hours from purchase, bus transfer policy is based on destination point, a confusing formula that some bus riders claim results in arbitrary and sometimes discriminatory assignment of transfer times. Coupled with rising fares and service cuts, this results in transit-dependent communities like East Portland experience more missed connections, higher commuting costs and for TriMet, declining ridership as people are forced to rely on their automobiles.

This week on Voices from the Edge, we talk with Crystal Wabnum, community organizer with OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon about that organization's Campaign for Fair Transfer and how an unfair transfer policy affects more than just bus riders. Joining in the conversation will be Cameron Johnson, a Bus Rider leader with OPAL. The Campaign for Fair Transfer is mobilizing for a Sept. 28 TriMet Board meeting with the goal of winning support for their demands.

Jo Ann Bowman is a former state legislator, former executive director of Oregon Action and past board president of Portland Community Media as well as a long-time leader in the struggle for racial and economic justice. Dave Mazza is a freelance journalist and former editor of The Portland Alliance who has covered and been involved in Portland's civil rights, environmental, labor and peace movements for over 20 years.

Join Jo Ann and Dave every Thursday as they bring you guests and conversations on the issues that are important to you. Support Voices from the Edge by becoming a member of KBOO today (just click the "tip jar" on our website to find out how).

Co-Hosts: Jo Ann Bowman and Dave Mazza
Producers: Dave Mazza and Jo Ann Bowman
Program Engineer: Steve Nassar
Audio Editor: Alicia Olson

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