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U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

Ensuring Equity in Service and Fare Changes

The Federal Transit Administration's Office of Civil Rights works with transit providers to ensure that the impacts of service and fare changes are not discriminatory and are distributed equitably to minority and low-income populations. We also seek to ensure that minority, low-income, and limited English proficient communities have an equal opportunity to participate in the public involvement process that often precedes a decision to change service and fares.

FTA's Circular 4702.1B, "Title VI Requirements and Guidelines for Federal Transit Administration Recipients," provides service and fare equity guidance to transit agencies with 50 or more fixed route vehicles in peak service in large urbanized areas (over 200,000 in population). All "providers of public transportation to which this Section applies shall develop written procedures consistent with this Section to evaluate, prior to implementation, any and all service changes that exceed the transit provider's major service change threshold, as well as all fare changes, to determine whether those changes will have a discriminatory impact based on race, color, or national origin. The written procedures and results of service and/or fare equity analyses shall be included in the transit provider's Title VI Program." For service changes, this requirement applies to "major service changes" only. The recipient should have established guidelines or thresholds for what constitutes a "major" service change. See chapter 4, section 7 of FTA Circular 4702.1B for additional information. A recipient that does not meet the threshold for this requirement is still encouraged to familiarize itself with this section and to consider the impact of service or fare changes on its ridership.

Questions about equity in service and fare changes can be directed to the Office of Civil Rights:

FTA Office of Civil Rights
East Building, 5th Floor – TCR
1200 New Jersey Ave., SE
Washington, DC  20590

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