Boston’s Youth Affordabili(T) Coalition calls for $10 MBTA youth pass, plans MassDOT protest

Young activists march at an April 2013 youth pass rally. Photo: YAC/Facebook
Young activists march at an April 2013 youth pass rally. Photo: YAC/Facebook

As MBTA fares stand now, one-third of Boston-area youth between the ages of 12 and 21 can’t afford to pay their way to work, school, healthcare, sports and extra curricular activities, according to organizers behind an escalating push for a $10 monthly MBTA youth pass.

Currently, junior high and high school students in that age bracket are able to purchase a $28 monthly pass, a fare that the Youth Affordabili(T) Coalition says is too costly for local teens.

“We polled the youth population and this is the figure young people feel they can afford,” said YAC Coordinator Caroline Casey, 23.

The coalition is not the first to call on an extremely discounted youth pass. For the past eight years, activists from the Boston-area Youth Organizing Project, Youth Way on the MBTA Boston Student Advisory Council and more have called for the pass, Casey said.

The group’s voice is getting louder, with an online petition collecting nearly 500 signatures, and a paper petition collecting hundreds more. Next Wednesday, activists are expected to embark on a Boston Youth Power March from Park Street to MassDOT, where they will stage a die-in, sometimes known as a lie-in, and deliver testimonials.

Organizers are using Facebook and Twitter to collect supporters, and are rallying followers with the hashtags “#YOUTHPASS” and “#NOHIKES.”

When asked whether the T would consider a $10 youth pass, a spokeswoman pointed to the already discounted youth pass and said transit officials maintain an active dialogue with activists.

“‘Active dialogue’ is an interesting way of putting it,” Casey said. “The MBTA is fully aware of the suffering… This line that their hands are tied is a myth.”

Organizers haven’t lost hope, Casey said, but with little to show after years of campaigning, the frustration is nearly tangible.

“They’re really angry,” she said. “They’re tired of being told there is no money, then reading in the paper that $20 million will go toward late night service because a few yuppies want to get drunk and go home late.”

Follow Morgan Rousseau on Twitter: @MetroMorgan
Follow Metro Boston on Twitter: @MetroBOS



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Pennsylvania police shooter manhunt near home of suspect's…

A police manhunt intensified on Friday for the gunman who killed an officer and wounded another in an ambush at a Pennsylvania police barracks a week ago.

Local

MAP: New York City street closures, September 19,…

The Department of Transportation and NYPD said there may be residual delays near all of the street closures on September 19, 20 and 21. There will be many streets and…

Local

MTA announces service changes for Sunday

The MTA has announced service changes ahead of Sunday's People's Climate March, which will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday. Riders using…

Local

NYPD launches Twitter account for L train

The NYPD recently launched a Twitter handle dedicated to the L train and its riders. According to @NYPDLtrain, officers went underground Thursday morning to hand…

Television

Recap: 'The Knick,' Season 1, Episode 6, 'Start…

The sixth episode of "The Knick" brings some bombshells but is mostly dedicated to isolated and usually fun one-off scenes.

Television

'Outlander' Season 1, Episode 7: 'The Wedding'

Claire and Jamie are man and wife!!! Like, ALL THE WAY, if you know what we mean. (Twice.)

Movies

Kevin Smith makes peace with the Internet

I was thinking about Ain't It Cool News and Harry Knowles last night, wondering if anyone from Ain't It Cool had reviewed my new movie…

Movies

Art imitates life in 'Swim Little Fish Swim'

There's a certain comfort to be taken in finding that young artists are still moving to New York and trying to make it — and…

NFL

Oday Aboushi ready for increased role, and to…

Oday Aboushi might feel comfortable enough to engage in some trash talk the next time he is on the field.

NFL

Giants vs. Texans: 3 things to watch

The Giants host the surprising Texans (2-0) in what may already be a must-win game for Big Blue.

NFL

Eric Decker misses practice again, could miss Monday

Jets wide receiver Eric Decker missed practice Thursday as he continues to rehab a hamstring injury suffered last Sunday.

MLB

Derek Jeter still focused on baseball as final…

Derek Jeter has effectively hid his emotions for 20 years in the Bronx.

Parenting

How motherhood inspired Bethenny Frankel's new book

Bethenny Frankel's new children's book is about how her daughter and dog didn't always get alone.

Parenting

A sneaky way to serve kids fruits and…

"My First Juices and Smoothies" gives smoothie recipes for kids.

Style

3 things we love from Day 1 of…

The highlights from Day 1 of Milan Fashion Week.

Sex

Why don't more couples use condoms?

  Call it the “condom moment.” That’s the name the authors of a new study have given to the pivotal conversation every couple should be…