At their meeting on June 25, 2020, the Rochester Genesee Regional Transportation Authority (RGRTA) Board of Commissioners adopted RGRTA 23-2020, a Chairman’s Resolution endorsing the Greater Rochester Black Agenda Group’s declaration: “Racism is a Public Health Crisis.”
The Board’s approval included the following statement of endorsement:
The Rochester Genesee Regional Transportation Authority (RGRTA) was created to provide a public service to all citizens. Our mission is to partner with the communities we serve to provide safe and sustainable mobility, offering better access, frequency, and reliability. In the spirit of partnership and belief in its purpose, RGRTA endorses the Greater Rochester Black Agenda Group’s (BAG) declaration that “Racism is a Public Health Crisis.”
A high percentage of our customers are people of color, people of limited means and people who are transit-dependent. As they face persistent racial discrimination in housing, education, health care, employment, criminal justice, business and economic mobility, we strive to help them break down these barriers by being a vehicle to improved access, equity and opportunity.
That effort alone is not enough. We take seriously the role we play in the lives of our customers and employees, and in public health. And we recognize there is a need for fairness and equity in how we provide service. As such, it is our responsibility “to address racism including reshaping our discourse and agenda so that we all actively engage in anti-racist and racial justice work.”
As an organization with a diverse workforce and ridership that spans eight counties in the Finger Lakes region, we embrace this work. We added Diversity and Inclusion as an organizational value to serve as its foundation at RGRTA. We started the RTS Culture and Inclusion Council to create a culture at RTS that brings everyone together. And we have been found by the Federal Transit Administration and New York State to be providing service in compliance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act.
Racism against any people group is unacceptable, violence against others is unacceptable and continued silence is unacceptable. We thank BAG for their leadership and look forward to working with them to spread this message throughout the community.
RGRTA thanks the Black Agenda Group for its leadership and being a driving force for change in our community.