TRU Members stand with transit workers

Member Update May 2010

TRU Members rallying for funding public transit

On May 4, TRU Members rallied downtown against cutting federal funds for public transit, alongside the Carmen’s Union and Keep America Moving Coalition. Slashing funds for the MBTA will hurt workers and put riders at risk in a system already struggling with decrepit equipment and an $8 billion debt burden. The rally featured local and national speakers, including Reverend Jesse Jackson, U.S. Representative Michael Capuano and TRU Chairperson Taisha O’Bryant.

Last week, our Chelsea TRU chapter held a meeting with the MBTA’s Director of Planning and Evaluation, Melissa Dullea. We discussed accessibility for wheelchairs and strollers, bus timeliness and an extended route for the 114 bus. Dullea said that the Service Planning department will investigate short-term alternatives to the route extension, as well as long-term extensions to be included in the next Service Plan.

This meeting with Dullea comes as a follow-up to a January meeting with Jeffrey Mullan, the CEO and Secretary of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT). Mullan showed interest in collaborating with TRU, although he denied any disparity in T service between wealthier and lower-income neighborhoods. A member of his staff offered to set up a bus ride with TRU members.

Also, thanks to members like you who have spent a decade campaigning for the management of the T to actually ride the system, we accomplished a major victory when Governor Deval Patrick appointed former commuter rail chief Richard Davey as the MBTA General Manager in March. According to the Boston Metro, the new manger is "a regular T rider." Davey has already reached out to TRU and shared his willingness to work together on riders’ issues. We look forward to collaborating with him in the future. To find out more, see our calendar for upcoming transit events and meetings.

From left to right, speakers Stephan MacDougall of ATU Local 589, Reverend Jesse Jackson, TRU Chairperson Taisha O'Bryant, Lisa Clauson of Community Labor United, Candidate for State Treasurer Steve Grossman

Return to May 2010 Member Update