Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Here is how to do it !

The Bus Riders Union of Austin, Texas was successful in stopping the local bus company, Capital Metropolitan Transit Authority, from increasing all bus fare rates across the board in September 2007. All fare rates were slated to double, except for Special Transit Services, which caters to disabled people, which would have quadrupled. In the weeks leading up to the budget setting meeting, BRU members had appealed to bus riders through radio interviews, newspaper coverage, and even distributing printed material on buses. Members had also lobbied city council members who also sat on Capital Metro's board and key committees. At the September 17th board meeting that discussed the budget one week before the budget was formally adopted, members of the Bus Riders Union, PODER (People Organized in Defense of Earth and Her Resources), ADAPT of Texas (a grassroots disability rights group), and other citizens convincingly argued against the proposed fare increases. With the help of ample media coverage, the public outcry proved large enough to stop the bus rate increases.

Links:
Bus Riders Union of Austin, Texas - http://www.busatx.org/
PODER - http://www.poder-texas.org/
ADAPT of Texas - http://www.adaptoftexas.org/
Capital Metropolitan Transit Authority - http://www.capmetro.org/

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