Thursday, March 10, 2016

Announcing Our Los Angeles County Transportation Equity Technical Working Group

We are excited to kick-off our Los Angeles County Transportation Equity Technical Working Group!

As a region, we have an exciting opportunity to develop a data-driven framework centered on social equity and public health that will inform transportation policy and investments in the Los Angeles County transportation network for decades to come.

Los Angeles County has tremendous disparities in wealth, health outcomes, and access to education, jobs, and services. Transportation’s role in perpetuating these disparities is increasingly understood, as are the opportunities to mitigate historical disinvestment with intentional policy to prioritize the needs of low-income communities of color. Race, income inequality, and environmental justice are complicated issues, but public investment plays an essential role in addressing them.

The purpose of this working group is to identify, analyze, and recommend equity indicators and suggest policy definitions for social equity in the region’s long-range regional transportation plans. The working group will build on efforts and insights from researchers, advocates, public agency staff, and develop user-friendly policy briefs and blog posts, to engage, seek feedback, and mobilize a broad range of stakeholders to advocate for a new data-driven and equity-centered approach to transportation planning and policy in Los Angeles County.

Outcomes of the Technical Working Group

  1. Chart out specific policy recommendations: Provide metrics for evaluating transportation projects on merits of social equity, access and public health.
  2. Apply the research for implementation and impact on the allocation of public funds: Develop a data-driven framework that prioritizes funding for projects that advance social equity, enhance public health, and achieve environmental goals.
  3. Cultivate leadership and support an effective dialogue that works through principled conflicts: Cultivate a genuine partnership between Metro staff, researchers, business leaders and advocates to address social equity and public health in transportation policies and investments.

Working Group Core Partners

We are comprised of public agency staff, equity and public health focused-stakeholders and community- and university-based transportation experts, including but not limited to:

  • The Advancement Project
  • USC Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (USC PERE)
  • Metro
  • Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition
  • Los Angeles County Department of Health
  • Public Health Alliance of Southern California

The group will be sharing our recommendations, as they develop, with stakeholders from the larger Investing in Place network to ground-truth, engage, and mobilize our partnership network to help achieve a more equitable transportation network. We hope you can join us at our March 29th partner meeting where we will be discussing this strategic effort.

Thank you to our funders, particularly the California Endowment, for the seed money to launch this effort to develop a data-driven and equity-centered approach and inclusive movement for transportation planning and policy in Los Angeles County.

Stay tuned for more updates.

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