Why this is important
Public agencies in the United States have been under pressure from advocates and riders to update outreach and decision-making methods for decades. The pandemic and the social movements following the murder of George Floyd in 2020 have led many agencies — including RTA — to reconsider how to effectively engage with taxpayers and riders. This has led to a number of changes in the way that RTA has involved stakeholders, including intentionally inviting a broader and more diverse group of voices to participate in projects and making compensation available to people who do; expanding our communications channels and following to ensure that our work is shared as broadly as possible; and increasing staffing and resources in governmental and external affairs.
Input on this topic from stakeholder working groups
Stakeholder working groups recommended finding new ways to quantify the impact transit has on equitable access to opportunity, climate action, safety, public health, and economic development. Working groups also recommended new and innovative approaches in measuring performance such as benchmarking with non-traditional peers and seeking best practices to adopt from other agencies and regions.
Advocacy work ahead
RTA will continuously seek new partners and with which to collaborate on advancing implementation of Transit is the Answer, with concerted effort toward reaching out to riders and communities who are most transit-dependent.