Yesterday, in between yawns and "oh, was there some kind of election in the news that I missed?" 8 candidates ran in the "fight for the soul-less city" mayor race. Meanwhile, on the same day, in Venezuela, a true champion of the people, the amazing Hugo Chavez, died.
FIGHT FOR THE SOUL OF THE CITIES OFFERS OUR BEST HOPE
The Bus Riders Union and the Community Rights Campaign were able to see an early screening of the new documentary about Mumia Abu-Jamal, an American political prisoner currently serving a life sentence for an alleged murder of a Philadelphia police officer. Incarcerated since 1981, in a trial that was plagued with blatant judicial disregard, Mumia was originally sentenced to death and that was successfully appealed in 2011 and commuted to a life sentence.
Leaders and organizers from the Labor Community Strategy Center, the Bus Riders Union, and the Community Rights Campaign reached out to the 2013 Los Angeles mayoral candidates. The letter outlines a series of priorites for the next mayor and urges the candidates to adopt our Fight for the Soul of the City proposal.
After six years of campaigning, the BRU scored a major environmental victory today: the Wilshire Boulevard Bus-Only Lanes won the resounding approval from the LA City Council and cleared the last major political hurdle for it to become reality
Tomorrow, our six-year campaign for Bus-Only Lanes on Wilshire Boulevard will finally face a vote at the Los Angeles City Council. We are close to sealing the deal on this important project, but not before overcoming continued efforts to cut down the project at the behest of wealthy West Side homeowner groups.
While the Bus Riders Union believes that the full 8.7 mile alternative is the best project and should be adopted by the city council, we see yesterday’s vote at the MTA board as a key advance in defeating the worst case alternative 5.4 mile option that the Brentwood homeowners have been pushing for and in moving the Wilshire Bus Only-Lanes project one step forward to reality.
Missed the April MTA board meeting? Get the update and watch the highlights on video here. Watch BRU member Crystal McMillan tell the board, "empty seats on a train to Antelope Valley don't replace lost buses in Koreatown!"
We've been gaining a lot of momentum pushing back against the MTA's staff claims that the 305,000 hours of service cuts that they have proposed for June 2011, are to address service duplications, and that these cuts will make the system more "efficient".
The fate of the Wilshire Bus-Only Lanes Project will be determined this May at the Los Angeles City Council and the Metro Board. We need you all to raise hell that LA should not compromise this decade long transportation project and the federal funding that w
"It is time for MTA’s bureaucrats to realize that higher efficiency in
transportation does not mean for the passengers to have to wait longer,
ride the bus packed like cattle or have a route that takes longer."
The BRU was in the news in the wake of Thursday's announcement of the Federal Transit Administration's upcoming investigation of the Los Angeles MTA. Los Angeles, along with Atlanta, Georgia will be investigated for compliance with Federal Civil Rights statutes.
When Univision reporter asked BRU Lead organizer Esperanza Martinez "So what are you protesting today?" Martinez responded, "Primarily we are here today not in protest, but to celebrate an important tactical victory in the fight against the MTA's proposed Bus Service Cuts. This signficant move was triggered by an administrative complaint submitted last fall by the BRU, LACAN, and KIWA to the Federal Transit Administration who will now be conducting a comprehensive on-site civil rights review of the MTA."
Breaking News - (Los Angeles, CA, March 14, 2011) - The Federal Transit Administration specified, in a letter in response to the Bus Riders Union (BRU) Administrative Complaint submitted in the fall of 2010, that it "plans on conducting an on-site compliance review of LA MTA this year. The decision to perform this compliance review was based, in part, on your (BRU) complaint submitted to the FTA Office of Civil Rights."
Today the BRU Street Theater presented a piece on the impacts of two sets of MTA Bus Service Cuts on bus riders. The piece 'Francisca y la muerte/Death
Searching Francisca' invites you, the spectator to become an actor and call
Sup. Mark-Ridley Thomas asking him to take a stand to stop the
MTA is proposing to cut 355,000 bus service hours, including eliminating 11 lines, and truncating or reducing 16 others. If adopted by MTA's Board, these reductions will be implemented in June. The maps below show all the routes that will be impacted under this proposal.
A new study by UCLA economist Paul Ong, commissioned by the BRU, finds that MTA policies are squeezing transit riders
at both ends. The study reveals that two years after the
federal stimulus, fare increases place a burden on transit-dependent people already
hit by high unemployment and declining wages.