The Need for Action on Equity
The US-101 corridor is a neighbor to diverse communities burdened with an ever-increasing cost of living and increased traffic congestion, while also facing the continued need to access jobs and services along the corridor and beyond. People encounter a wide variety of barriers when seeking to access transportation services or programs. The PMT adopted Federal Highway Administration’s STEPS equity framework in developing specific equity-oriented actions. These actions should be taken alongside the mobility actions to achieve the MAP’s overall goal of serving the region equitably. A full accounting of these actions is provided here.
Taking Action on Equity
Planning projects have the opportunity to shape both process and outcome equity. Process equity includes efforts to ensure the development of a project or program is equitable and inclusive with representation from all groups at the table. Outcome equity focuses on the impacts of a program on defined performance metrics. With respect to process equity, partners implementing 101-MAP actions should create opportunities to:
Partner. Build relationships with community leaders and organizations who are trusted by the community; incorporate and compensate them for their ideas and participation in programs from beginning of design and development.
Listen. Conduct user-centered research (e.g., survey in the community, conduct focus groups or test applications) about appropriate and accessible terminology, length, level of detail in applications, forms, or program information.
Fund. Provide funding for community-based organizations to design and execute community engagement and membership drive programs in their own communities
Reinvest. Explore ways to create local community-based workforce development opportunities through new programs or projects.
Integrate. Build transportation benefit programs into workforce programs, job trainings, or other social services through “wrap around services”; reduce the number of outside referral programs and steps required.
Technology has the ability to streamline processes that were once cumbersome, making them more efficient to implement and monitor. At the same time, technology has the ability to divide and widen the gap of opportunity and access, if not utilized carefully. The following are some foundational equity actions for all programs utilizing technology and the internet, many recommended by Code for America.
When designing enrollment processes, minimize the number of pages required to be loaded to complete an application.
Make registration with log-in and password optional.
Adopt one-way or two-way text messaging for program reminders or submission of eligibility documents.
Ensure all informational and program enrollment websites are mobile-friendly.
Prevent sociodemographic profiling within mobility program apps or websites.
Ensure apps have a range of accessible communication functions, including native apps known to users, short message services (SMS), voice-activated functionality, audio dial-in for landline users, and desktop-friendly browser versions.
Offer a path to participation that does not require use of the internet, or a computer, mouse, or keypad.
Invest in direct, professional translation services instead of relying on Google translate, which can be unreliable for accurate translations.
Mobility and Equity Actions
The following table lists all actions identified in the 101-MAP process and emphasizes the integrated implementation of both mobility and equity actions.