Pack the MTA Hearing May 22nd to End Ticketing and Arrest of Youth for Fare Evasion and to Win a FREE Metro Pass for LA County Students

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Please join the movement to push for a FREE LA County Student Metro Pass
and an end to the Criminalization, Stop and Frisk, Ticketing and Arrest of Young People for Fare Evasion!!! 

 

TAKE ACTION

 

TOMORROW, THURSDAY, MAY 22ND9:30AM

METROPOLITAN TRANSPORTATION AUTHORITY HEARING ON FARE INCREASES

LOCATION: 1 Gateway Plaza, Los Angeles, CA 90012 – Across the street from LA County Jail (Men’s Central Jail and Twin Towers)

 

TUESDAY, MAY 27TH2-6PM

LA FOR YOUTH CONCERT AND RALLY

LOCATION: West Steps of City Hall (Free Speech Zone), 200 North Spring Street, LA 90012

 

HAVE YOUR GROUP, SCHOOL, FAITH OR COMMUNITY BASED ORGANIZATION ENDORSE THE CAMPAIGN BY RESPONDING TO THIS E-MAIL.

 

CALL AND E-MAIL THE MTA BOARD MEMBERS AND URGE THEM TO PASS THE MOTION FOR A FREE STUDENT METRO PASS AND THE DECRIMINALIZATION OF YOUHT ON METRO BUSES AND TRAINS, INCLUDING AN END TO FARE EVASION STOP AND FRISKS, TICKETING AND ARRESTS.  You can find a list of the MTA Board and their contact information at: http://www.metro.net/about/board/executives/

 

HISTORY OF THE CAMPAIGN

 

In the past two months, the YJC has met with the office of Lakewood City Councilmember and MTA Board Chairperson Diane Dubois, the office of LA City Mayor and MTA Board Member Eric Garcetti, and several times with LA County Supervisor and MTA Board Member Mark Ridley Thomas and his staff. THEY HAVE ALL EXPRESSED GREAT CONCERN FOR THE CRIMINALIZATION OF YOUNG PEOPLE ON THE METROS AND BUSES BY LAW ENFORCEMENT – INCLUDING STOPS, FRISKS, TICKETING AND ARREST – and have indicated that they would support our call for decriminalization.  Mark Ridley Thomas has agreed to introduce a motion at tomorrow’s hearing for the decriminalization of fare evasion and the free student Metro pass.

 

Over the last 18 months, the Youth Justice Coalition has pushed for a free student Metro pass for LA County and the decriminalization of young people on public transportation including eliminating ticketing and arrests for fare evasion, and has secured the support of Chief Nash – Presiding Judge of the Juvenile Court, LA Unified School District Board Member Monica Garcia, unanimous support of the County’s Education Coordinating Council, and the endorsements of several organizations and coalitions.  The YJC has also conducted our own research, including surveying over 2,000 youth across the county, and released a report outlining the benefits of a free student Metro pass and the decriminalization of fare evasion; coordinated a sub-committee of the County’s School Attendance Task Force to engage other organizations, County agencies, advocates and school districts in the campaign; pushed the Sheriffs Department to create a diversion program for fare evasion ticketing; and worked with the County Department of Public Health to issue a report on the costs and potential benefits of the student Metro pass.

 

YJC members have testified numerous times before the County Board of Supervisors, the Compton City Council and MTA Board, and met with law enforcement, public officials and their staffs. In each hearing and in each meeting, YJC members shared their personal stories as well as the results of our report on a free student Metro Pass, including 1. Exposing the fact that fare evasion is the leading cause of Sheriffs’ ticketing of youth in LA County; 2. Information from Boston, San Francisco, Oakland and San Francisco on their student pass programs; 3. The preliminary results from a survey of over 2,000 youth on their experiences with law enforcement on public transportation and their challenges paying for the bus and Metro; 4. The social, educational and cost benefits of a free Metro pass for LA County students, pre-school through college; and 5. A call for the decriminalization of youth in public transportation, including an end to ticketing for fare evasion.

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