Tired of responding to transit funding crisis disproportionately impacting low-income riders, Sage joined forces with Transportation Choices Coalition, One America, and transit equity partners to form the Transit Equity Alliance in 2013.
Since the recession, King County Metro, along with Pierce and Snohomish local transit have faced huge revenue shortfalls and were forced to propose huge service cuts. Simultaneously, Southeast Seattle faced significant changes to service due to the implementation of the light rail connecting SeaTac Airport to Downtown Seattle.
For years, LELO and Asian Counseling & Referral Service led amazing grassroots effort to organize riders to prevent these critical cuts. Tired of responding to transit funding crisis disproportionately impacting low-income riders, Sage joined forces with Transportation Choices Coalition, One America, and transit equity partners to form the Transit Equity Alliance in 2013.
Through partnership with the Sustainable Funders Collaborative, we created a series of maps, which showed that communities of color throughout the region were disproportionately served with huge gaps in transit access. Young people of color lacked transit access to college, seniors to community centers, and families to affordable healthcare, cultural centers, and their jobs.
Program successes include:
Working together with our partners, as well as the Seattle King County Coalition on Homelessness and the Seattle Transit Riders Union, we won ORCA Lift, a nationally recognized low-income transit fare which was implemented in March 2015.
Graham Street Infill Station
Along with our partners, we successfully passed the Move Seattle transportation levy that included $10 million for Graham Street Link Light Rail infill station, a critical opportunity to create equitable transit oriented development in the Rainier Valley, which will allow communities to prosper in place.
Sound Transit 3
We expanded access to transit through Sound Transit 3, a comprehensive transportation system that guarantees good jobs standards during construction, surplus property for affordable housing, and improved community engagement policies during implementation.
These wins came from Sage’s consistent engagement and leadership development of our SouthCORE coalition members and Transit for All coalition who were instrumental in writing letters, testifying and advocating for policies that will positively impact our communities and build power.