The Transit to Trails Act (H.R. 4273 and S. 2467) seeks to increase access to nature by establishing a block grant program at the Department of Transportation to create public transportation systems for underserved communities to visit public lands.
People need nature near where they live. Of course, there is huge value in city parks - one study showed that even just twenty minutes spent in a local park helps kids concentrate better in school. But not everyone is privileged enough to have access to a local park. People of color and low-income families in cities across the U.S. are significantly less likely to live near a park or green space.
Beyond city parks, everyone deserves access to the awe-inspiring lands and wildlife that are typically a little farther out of town. U.S. public lands, especially given their history of colonization, should not be solely the domain of people who can afford fancy gear and a car to drive to the trailhead. But just like with access to local parks, someone’s likelihood of owning a car is tied up with identity. Black and Latinx families in the U.S. are much less likely to own a car than white families, limiting their options for visiting national parks and public lands.
The Sierra Club is working to ensure that everyone, not just a privileged few, can access the great outdoors via affordable, accessible transit -- and your support can make a difference!
Contacting your legislator will build awareness and support for this bill as well as elevate the issue of transportation access to outdoor areas and public lands.
Reach out to your legislators and urge them to co-sponsor the Transit to Trails Act!
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