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Transit Equity

Ensuring Equity

Fostering Diversity

Building Community

A system accessible for all

TriMet is committed to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. This page highlights milestones and progress under the direction of our Board of Directors and General Manager, and with the help of countless community partners and staff.

Historic barriers have prevented some of our most vulnerable community members from participating in the public process, which is why we strive to create educational and engaging community dialogue that is inclusive of all races, cultures and identities—ensuring fair access for traditionally underserved communities.

Recently, with the help of our riders and system stakeholders, we have introduced a new low-income fare, decriminalized the system and announced new climate goals. For more than two decades, we have been industry leaders in minority contracting and workforce development. We have also established one of the most comprehensive Civil Rights Title VI programs in the nation.

Please take a moment and explore our initiatives, learn about our projects and connect to the latest system news.

Low Income/Reduced Fare

30,000
enrollees in 18 months

More than 30,000 people signed up for our Low-Income Fare program in the first 18 months = $5.2 Million in rider savings.

In July 2018, TriMet launched our Low-Income Fare Program. With it, we expanded our Honored Citizen reduced fare to allow qualification based on income. Residents of Oregon, between the ages of 18 and 64 years old, who make up to twice the federal poverty level, can apply for the reduced fare.

Those who qualify for our reduced fare get unlimited rides for $28 a month — a 72% discount. Learn more at trimet.org/lowincome.

Fare relief and fare assistance programs

$8.5 million
in free and reduced fare

Over the past five years, we have provided more than $7.5 million worth of free fare to 105 non-profits and community-bases organizations. We have also provided more than $1.2 million in reduced fares to 60 non-profits and government entities during the same period.

We believe that access to transit is access to opportunity which is why we developed our Fare Relief and Fare Assistance Programs. These programs were designed to increase independence, provide access to employment and employment resources, and improve community connections for thousands of low-income members of our community.

High School Pass Program

$610,000
in free fare to low-income students

During the 2019-2020 school year, TriMet awarded more than $610,000 in free fare to 11 school districts across the three counties in our service area.

The goal of this initiative is to collaborate with districts across the Tri-County area to connect low-income students with fare supports and resources to increase their ability to access the transportation system and contribute to more equitable educational outcomes.

Transit Equity Oversight

16
Region-wide Partnerships

TriMet’s 16-member Transit Equity Advisory Committee (TEAC) provides insight and guidance to the General Manager on issues of equity, access and inclusion.

Members represent a diverse cross-section of community leaders, advocates, and liaisons for disadvantaged and historically underrepresented communities.

TEAC has been instrumental in helping TriMet develop and implement our Low-Income Fare program, decriminalize the citation process, and connect hundreds of nonprofit and community-based organizations with TriMet’s Access Transit program.

Additional equity advisory committees include TriMet’s Language Access Committee, which provides ongoing feedback, reflective of the English as a Second Language (ESL) communities we serve; and TriMet’s Small Business Equity Advisory Committee, which provides guidance on how to best increase small business participation in agency contracts.

Decriminalized System

90
days to resolve citations internally

90 days to resolve a citation directly with TriMet—keeping it out of the court system.

In July 2018, after we sought a change to Oregon Law, TriMet reduced the severity/consequences for fare evasion, bringing the penalties more in line with the violation.

Rather than entering the court system, adults who receive a fare evasion-only citation have the option to resolve it with TriMet directly within the first 90 days. Individuals can pay a reduced fine, perform community service or enroll in our reduced fare program.

Civil RIghts

26
policies ensuring equity and fair access

TriMet’s Title VI program—one of the most comprehensive in the nation—includes 26 unique methods to meet and exceed national Civil Rights requirements.

The intent of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is to remove barriers and conditions that prevent minority, low-income, and persons with limited English proficiency (LEP) from equal access to public goods and services. In effect, Title VI promotes fairness and equity in federally assisted programs and activities.

Our Title VI program provides continuous oversight to ensure we are not only in compliance but working to advance the true intent of the law.

Minority Contracting

$70.8 million
historic DBE contract

In winter 2020, we awarded the $70.8 million Division Transit Project to Raimore Construction, a certified Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) with a 20-year history of work for TriMet, making it the largest DBE contract in Oregon history.

TriMet’s has a strong commitment to engaging diverse community members in its workforce and business procurements. We adopted our first goals for engaging minority- and women-run contractors in 1982. Two decades later, we again demonstrated our commitment to fair practices by creating the Diversity and Transit Equity Department.

 

Learn more about DBE, Small Business and Workforce Training and Hiring Programs

Climate Justice

8
actions for a greener future

In 2019, TriMet announced bold green actions the agency will take to reduce its carbon footprint and help combat climate change emissions.

1. Convert MAX light rail to 100% wind power in early 2020

2. Convert buses to renewable diesel by April 2020

3. Stop diesel bus purchases after 2025

4. Convert non-bus service vehicles to electric and heavy-duty service vehicles to renewable diesel by 2030

5. Support a regional Youth Pass Program

6. Conduct a carbon baseline analysis and develop a net-zero carbon strategy

7. Develop a “carbon lens” to be applied to planning and purchasing decision-making

8. Support regional air quality testing

Our partnerships with Metro, Portland General Electric, the City of Portland and others will be vital in helping us accomplish these goals while the region works to meet greenhouse gas emissions reduction benchmarks.

Equitable Development

466
affordable housing units developed

Since 2015, we have facilitated the development of 718 transit-adjacent housing units. Of those, 466—or 65%—are designated affordable housing.

TriMet’s focus for supporting regional development is to maximize density, minimize gentrification and displacement and transform public spaces by creating mixed-use development near transit stations, with a diversity of uses and income levels.

We continue to advance best practices in facilitating affordable housing near transit. Historically, TriMet has worked with both public and private partners, defining affordable housing requirements through individual sale or lease of excess property that had been used for construction.

In planning new high capacity transit lines like the Division Transit Project and Southwest Corridor Light Rail Project, TriMet and partners create strategies and programs to encourage equitable development and affordable housing.

Building Consensus, Creating Connections

Our Community Affairs department creates connections between design teams, construction crews and the communities where new transit infrastructure is being built. The team is responsible for raising awareness of these projects and gathering input from the communities they will serve.

We build personal relationships with people and organizations during the design phase of a projects, integrating community input and perspective into the designs. During construction, we draw on these established relationships to minimize construction impacts, support small businesses and keep project stakeholders informed.

Learn more about our current and upcoming infrastructure projects:

Division Transit Project logo
SW Corridor Project logo
A Better Red Project logo

Get Involved

TriMet News

Events

Coming soon.

Meetings

TEAC Meeting
Tuesday, July 14, 4:30–6:30 p.m.
Learn more

 

VIDEO: Our low-income fare program enrolls 25,000 in less than 18 months.

VIDEO: We partner with nearly 50 organizations to expand access to low-income fare.

 

Contact Us

Questions or comments? Email us or call 503-962-2244.