Saturday, July 18, 2015

Public Transit Rider's Bill Of Rights

Mother And Child On A Bus
  1. The public transit rider shall be defined as anyone who requires or desires access to public transportation for mobility. The public transit rider is not limited to the poor and elderly. It shall be defined as all people, whether or not they currently need public transportation for mobility.
  2. The public transit rider must never have to wait more than 15 minutes (one quarter hour) for the next public transit vehicle for the selected route to arrive. This is similar to the maximum amount of time a driver will circle waiting for a parking place to become available.  Fifteen minutes is pretty universally the maximum time any reasonable person should be expected to wait for anything.
  3. The public transit rider must have access to public transit 24 hours per day and 7 days per week. A town would never close all streets, bridges or sidewalks at night. So why should a transportation district shut down at night?
  4. A town would never reduce the number of lanes on a major road on Sunday, nor should public transit service be reduced on Sunday.
  5. The public transit rider must never need to walk a distance greater than 1/8th mile (201 meters or roughly two football fields lengthwise) to access a transit stop. Imagine that garages were forbidden. How far would a driver be willing to walk to to access an automobile? As a corollary, if an 1/8th mile circle were drawn around every transit stop in a system, there should be no area without access.
  6. The public transit rider must not be required to pay extra to transfer from one route to another for any of a given transit agency's routes. It is impossible for one route to uniformly cover and entire city. When there are multiple routes, some riders must transfer. Barriers to transfer shall be prohibited.
  7. The public transit rider must never be prohibited from boarding a public transit vehicle because of race, age, religion, nationality, gender, health, physical ability, or sexual orientation.  Bicycles must be accommodated except when they adversely effect passenger access, boarding, or safety.
  8. The public transit rider must never have health or safety threatened, and at all times must be protected from harm. This includes safety when approaching a transit stop. Such as: never having to cross a busy street to reach transport; never needing to run to catch infrequent transport; never being warned about a sudden stop.
  9. The public transit rider must be provided with clean, comfortable transport. No public transit vehicle shall become soiled, littered, or defaced in such a way as to cause transit rider discomfort or fear.
  10. There shall be no different rights between public transit and privately run public transit.