IndyCAN heralds mass transit bill passage

March 13, 2014 | NUVO | link to article

Editor's Note: The news desk felt uplifted to receive the following press release on Thursday evening from IndyCAN. 

Clergy and faith leaders from across Central Indiana join Bus Riders in applauding state legislators for acting on God's Abundance and passing SB176, an engine of prosperity and racial equity in the region. SB 176 leads Indianapolis one step closer to a transit system that will double bus service and connect hard-working bus riders to good paying jobs across the region. 

"I have two children and have turned my life around after a felony 23 years ago. In the past year I have had to turn down three middle class jobs because I did not have access to adequate transit. Without the opportunity to get to a good paying job I can barely afford groceries for my family. This vote will make a difference," Myron Wynn, Bus Rider and IndyCAN leader at Friendship Missionary Baptist Church. 

IndyCAN Bus Riders and people of faith from over 17 denominations have worked tirelessly over the past several months in support of the bill. Congregations representing tens of thousands of voters held vigils at the statehouse as part of 'Transit Tuesdays of Prophetic Witness', made phone calls and sent emails to their legislators, and collected over 2,000 bus riders' stories. 

"The passage of the Mass Transit bill is a statement that the City and the State of Indiana are moving forward to build a community for opportunity for all," Pastor Carey Grady of Bethel AME Church in Indianapolis. 

The Indianapolis Congregation Action Network (IndyCAN) reaches tens of thousands of people from 30 religious congregations united across race, class, religion, and political affiliation to build a region of opportunity. In 2013, Indy ranked 12th in the nation for the highest poverty, a reality closely tied to its limited transportation. Less than 17% of Indy workers can reach jobs within a 90-minute commute on public transit (Brookings, 2012). Transit continues to racialize opportunity: 1 in 9 Blacks compared to 1 in 33 whites depends on transit to get to work. Every $1 Billion invested in transit creates 49,000 good jobs.