In the wake of the George Floyd protests, access to quality public transportation, mobility and racial justice have intersected in profound ways. While the car remains a symbol of individual freedom in the United States, for African Americans the reverse is true. Black motorists are more likely to be pulled over by the police than white motorists, increasing the likelihood of violent interactions.
Black, Indigenous and communities of color tend to depend on public transit for work, yet the fabric of rail and bus systems are threatened by budget cuts.
In commemoration of the 65th anniversary of Rosa Parks’ sit-in that sparked the Montgomery Bus Boycott, we ask, what does racial and mobility justice look like for our time? How are activists and policy makers making connections between public transportation, environmental justice and the right to move? And how can we look at the issue of free public transportation not only as aspirational, but a key demand for the moment?
Jovanka Beckles, Transit Board Alameda County, former City Councillor Richmond, California
Peter Kerre, Street Riders NYC
Kafui Ablode Attoh, Professor, City University of New York, School of Labor and Urban Studies
Daniel Santini, Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung – Sao Paulo
Manuela Kropp, Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung – Brussels
Special performance by Jeremiah Hosea
December 1, 2020, 12:30pm EST