Secretary Buttigieg Wants To Know If You Think USDOT’s Policies Are Racist
Washington D.C. – The Secretary of the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) is seeking input on whether the Department’s policies are racist and fail to provide equal opportunity to all Americans.
In a Request For Information (RFI) issued by Secretary Pete Buttigieg’s Office, the USDOT said it intends to “assess whether, and to what extent, its programs and policies perpetuate systemic barriers to opportunities and benefits for people of color and other underserved groups.”
“The Department is committed to advancing equity, civil rights, racial justice, environmental justice, and equal opportunity and has the responsibility to ensure that all Americans have equitable access to safe, affordable, and sensible transportation options, no matter who they are or where they live,” the RFI states. “This means that all communities should have meaningful access to the Department’s programs and activities.”
Further, according to the RFI, the USDOT is seeking answers to dozens of questions related to “transportation equity” specifically from “stakeholders in public agencies, academic researchers involved in the study of equity in transportation decision-making, advocacy, and not-for-profit institutions and individuals working in the transportation sector or the field of equity, and State, local, Tribal, and territorial areas.”
The USDOT defined “equity” as the “consistent and systematic fair, just, and impartial treatment of all individuals, including individuals who belong to underserved communities that have been denied such treatment, such as Black, Latino, and Indigenous and Native American persons, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and other persons of color; members of religious minorities; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) persons; persons with disabilities; persons who live in rural areas; and persons otherwise adversely affected by persistent poverty or inequality.”
The RFI is in response to Executive Order (EO) 13985 signed by President Biden on his first day in office.
The President’s EO directs the Federal Government to pursue a comprehensive approach to “advancing equity, civil rights, racial justice, and equal opportunity to strengthen communities that have been historically underserved, marginalized, and adversely affected by persistent poverty and inequality.”
The USDOT asserted the assessments from the RFI will better equip the Department to develop policies and programs that “deliver resources and benefits equitably to all.”
Comments are requested by June 24, 2021.
Click HERE to view the docket and/or submit your comments.