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Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery (2023)

Chapter: 2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan

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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
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CHAPTER 2
Pandemic Partnerships: Findings
from Literature Scan

This chapter presents findings from the literature scan. The first section provides background on the public health and equity context that created the need for nontraditional transit initiatives and partnerships. The second section outlines funding and regulatory actions of the federal government that made these initiatives possible. The chapter concludes by reporting on the types of initiatives and the partnerships identified, thus setting the stage for the structure of the questionnaire and responses presented in Chapter 3.

2.1 COVID-19: The Public Health, Regulatory, and Equity Context

The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the economy and society, led to major shifts in public transit demand and service, and created significant challenges, as well as sparked innovation. In response to this crisis, transit agencies worked to meet community needs through a variety of nontraditional initiatives, many of which were created in partnership with other organizations. These initiatives included activities and services that employed transit resources in new ways, including for delivery of food and supplies; internet provision; and access to medical care, COVID-19 testing, and vaccinations.

This section provides general background on the public health, equity, and funding context within which transit agencies implemented these initiatives. The following sections describe the types of initiatives and partnerships identified from the literature review.

2.1.1 Public Health, Transit Service, and Equity Implications

When the pandemic and associated public health risks first emerged in the United States, demand for public transit fell in response to the unknowns surrounding the safety of transit, as shown by the fall in unlinked passenger trips (UPT) in Figure 1. Some transit operators temporarily instituted cutbacks in service, as reflected in the decrease in vehicle revenue miles (VRM) and vehicle revenue hours (VRH), as shown in Figure 1. Service changes varied by region, and cuts were more often focused on fixed route transit rather than on demand response. Social distancing requirements further complicated the delivery of transit service. April of 2020 represented the greatest decrease in service to approximately 65 percent of December 2019 service levels. Transit agencies have since restored service to 80 percent or more of prepandemic levels. Ridership, while slower to recover, has generally trended upward from a low point in April 2020 of about 20 percent of December 2019 ridership to approximately 60 percent of prepandemic levels as of November 2021.

The specifics of the decline and shape of the recovery curve have, of course, varied by region. It is also important to note that the data shown in Figure 1 was assembled from transit agencies

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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×
Image
Figure 1. National trends in demand (UPT) and transit supply (VRM, VRH) during the COVID-19 pandemic. Source: FTA, National Transit Database 2019–2021; CDC, COVID Data Tracker, 2020–2021. The data includes full reporter data for each month and reduced and rural reporter estimates. Because reduced and rural reporters are not included in monthly FTA statistics, the ridership and service metrics included in the data are simply annual totals divided by 12 months per year. COVID-19 cases are the monthly average of new daily cases as reported by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

reporting to the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) in the National Transit Database (NTD). There are multiple categories of reporters within the NTD. Larger operators (full reporters) provide monthly performance metrics, while data for reduced reporters (agencies operating fewer than 30 vehicles in maximum service) and rural transit agencies is only available annually. Figure 1 therefore reflects month-to-month variation for mostly larger and more urbanized areas across the United States but only captures an aggregate drop in ridership and service between 2019 and 2020 for the reduced and rural reporters. Additionally, some transit operators that do not receive FTA funding are not represented in the data.

Changes in ridership and travel patterns were also not uniform across social and demographic groups. The Transit app, a mobile phone app that provides real-time transit schedule and routing services, surveyed their users in April of 2020 to identify who continued to ride public transportation. They compared this data to information previously published by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) on the demographics of transit riders. They found that those who continued to use public transportation were disproportionately female and people of color, particularly Black and Latino, as shown in Figure 2. Riders during the pandemic also represented essential service workers in industries such as food preparation and health care, as shown in Figure 3, and those with low incomes (Who’s Left Riding Public Transit? 2020). These were also major cohorts of transit ridership from before the pandemic (U.S. Census Bureau 2020). Similarly, an analysis of route- and stop-level ridership data from the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority found that routes serving neighborhoods with more people of color or low-income residents tended to retain their ridership more than routes serving neighborhoods that were predominantly white and affluent (Fried 2020).

Members of low-income households are more likely to depend on transit to get to work and to access services. According to transit survey data collected by APTA and from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey, 13 percent of U.S. households have incomes under $15,000, but among transit-using households, the comparable figure is 21 percent (Clark et al. 2017). Transit can be particularly important for older adults or persons with a disability who either

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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×
Image
Figure 2. People of color as a share of transit riders prepandemic and midpandemic. Sources: Clark et al. 2017; Who’s Left Riding Public Transit? 2020. Data collected by the Transit app from its users through in-app surveys.
Image
Figure 3. Industry and occupational composition of transit commuters in April 2020. Source: Who’s Left Riding Public Transit? 2020. Data collected by the Transit app from its users through in-app surveys.
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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×

cannot or choose not to drive. Those in need of life-sustaining medical care, such as dialysis or cancer treatments, also continued to use and rely on public transportation.

While much of the transit ridership nationally is concentrated in urban areas, transit plays an important role in rural areas as well, especially in serving nondrivers and those without cars. In general, rural areas have higher percentages of older adults and people with disabilities compared to urban areas (Mattson and Mistry 2021). While rural households are more likely to own automobiles than urban households, about 4 percent of rural households do not have any vehicle available (Mattson and Mistry 2021).

Given the equity imperative to continue serving those who rely on transit the most, transit agencies during the pandemic generally sought to concentrate their services on connecting transit-dependent communities to essential services. This included focusing on local routes over commuter services, in the case of fixed route transit, as well as implementing targeted demand response or paratransit solutions (NACTO 2020). Nevertheless, service cuts (in coverage and/or frequency) and pandemic restrictions made it more difficult to provide access to medical appointments, grocery stores, pharmacies, and other necessities. In some cases, transit agencies sought less traditional solutions to provide access to essential services, as discussed further in Section 2.2.

2.1.2 COVID-19 Relief Funding and Allowance for Incidental Use

The initial stark decrease in public transit ridership that occurred early in the pandemic was followed by a longer period of ridership below prepandemic levels. This led to losses in fare revenue simultaneous with decreases in other transit revenue sources. According to APTA, decreases in transit revenue sources coupled with increasing expenses resulted in significant funding needs for transit agencies (APTA 2021). In response to emergency funding needs across sectors, the federal government passed a series of laws providing emergency relief funding, including FTA funds for public transit. These funding sources were, in many cases, instrumental in allowing transit agencies to implement COVID-19 adaptation strategies and partnerships.

The Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security Act

The Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES), signed into law in March 2020, provides $25 billion to transit agencies affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Urbanized areas are allocated $22.7 billion through Section 5307 formula funds, while $2.2 billion are dedicated to rural areas through Section 5311 rural formula grants (FTA 2021c). These funds are provided at a 100 percent federal share, requiring no local match.

Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021

The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA), enacted into law in December 2020, provides $14 billion in emergency federal funds for public transit agencies. CRRSAA allotted $13.26 billion specifically for urbanized areas, $678.2 million for rural areas and tribes, and $50 million for Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities (FTA 2021d). CRRSAA funds are provided at a 100 percent federal share.

However, many small urban and rural transit systems did not receive CRRSAA funds. In a letter to key members of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs and to the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, the Community Transportation Association of America’s executive director, Scott Bogren, described how just 39 of the 320 total small-urbanized areas (populations between 50,000 and 200,000) in the nation received CRRSAA funding. Additionally, 28 state departments of transportation (DOTs) did not receive rural transit funding assistance through CRRSAA.

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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×

American Rescue Plan Act of 2021

Signed into law in March 2021, the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) grants $30.5 billion in federal funding to support public transportation systems in the United States (FTA 2021a). ARPA allocates $26.1 billion to urbanized areas through formula grants and $317.2 million to rural areas through formula grants, including $30 million for tribes. Additionally, $2.2 billion in relief funds are allocated toward FTA operating-assistance grants intended for communities that demonstrated additional need due to the pandemic. The Capital Investment Grants Program is allotted $1.675 billion in federal funding, including $1.425 billion intended specifically for New Start and Core Capacity projects. And $50 million is earmarked for the Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities formula program. Competitive planning grants and competitive tribal grants are allocated $25 million and $5 million, respectively.

Incidental Use of Federally Funded Assets for Nontransit Purposes

Incidental use is defined by the FTA as the “use of federally funded assets by another public or private entity for non-transit purposes” and is permitted if it does not reduce or limit transit service (DOT-FTA and HUD-PIH Partnership for COVID-19 Recovery 2020). Incidental use was of particular interest to operators during the COVID-19 pandemic as some assets, such as vehicles or stations, were not being used to provide typical transit services. Transit agencies were able to partner with other organizations in their communities to use vehicles or facilities for nontransit functions like food or medicine delivery or serving as mobile Wi-Fi hotspots (DOT-FTA and HUD-PIH Partnership for COVID-19 Recovery 2020). As part of COVID-19 relief efforts, the FTA allowed use of CARES Act, CRRSAA, and ARPA funds for the operational costs of providing essential services through the incidental use of transit assets (FTA 2021b). During the COVID-19 public health emergency, prior approval was not required, although the FTA did request that operators notify FTA Regional Offices (FTA 2022). Additionally, the FTA gave blanket authority to permit recipients to use regular formula funds to cover incidental use costs (FTA 2022).

The CARES Act, CRRSAA, and ARPA together provide a total of $69.5 billion in federal funding for public transportation. Public transportation systems across the United States have also been receiving various state, regional, local, and nongovernmental organization funding support throughout the course of the COVID-19 pandemic. Altogether, these assorted fundings sources are working to aid in pandemic response and recovery and to close the transit funding gap.

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic resulting in lower demand for transit rides, some reduction in services, and losses of fare and tax revenue, transit agencies have nevertheless mobilized resources and engaged in creative partnerships to provide access to essential services, particularly for those who rely on transit most.

2.2 Nontraditional Transit Functions to Meet Essential Needs

In conducting the literature scan, the team reviewed resources from the FTA and the National Rural Transit Assistance Program, scanned transit agency websites, and searched the internet for news articles describing nontraditional transit initiatives and partnerships. Through these efforts, the team identified over 50 unique initiatives that utilized transit organizations’ resources to perform nontraditional functions, most of which involved at least one partner agency. Though each initiative was individually designed to best meet the needs of the community it serves, common themes emerged, and the team developed categories to classify the different nontraditional transit functions. The categories and accompanying descriptions are:

  • Provide access to food and supplies. The transit organization and partner(s) provided delivery or distribution services for food, groceries, or medications to members of the community.
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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×
  • Provide access to internet. The transit organization and partner(s) used transit vehicles to provide mobile Wi-Fi hotspots to support the internet access needs of residents (i.e., for distance learning, work from home, and so forth).
  • Provide transportation to COVID-19 testing sites. The transit organization and partner(s) provided transit services to COVID-19 testing sites that were not part of a regular transit route.
  • COVID-19 testing at transit hubs. The transit organization and partner(s) hosted a COVID-19 testing site or clinic at a transit station, center, or stop.
  • Provide access to vaccination sites. The transit organization and partner(s) provided transit services to vaccination sites that were not part of a regular transit route.
  • Mobile COVID-19 vaccination clinic. The transit organization and partner(s) used transit vehicles to host a mobile COVID-19 vaccination clinic that traveled to various parts of the community to offer COVID-19 vaccinations.
  • Vaccination at transit hub. The transit organization and partner(s) hosted a COVID-19 vaccination clinic at a transit station, center, or stop.
  • New technology implementation. The transit organization and partner(s) piloted and/or implemented the use of new or innovative technology to address pandemic-related needs (i.e., innovative cleaning or ventilation technologies for transit vehicles, innovative fare collection technology, transit ride booking platforms, and so forth).

Findings from the literature scan show that over half of the nontraditional transit initiatives identified were related to providing access to COVID-19 vaccinations, whether through a mobile clinic, hosting vaccination sites at transit hubs, or providing direct transit to vaccination sites. Urban, rural, and tribal transit agencies, as well as state DOTs across the United States, were involved in these vaccination-related initiatives. Comanche Nation Transit, a tribal transit provider for the Comanche Nation in Oklahoma, offered free transportation for anyone 65 and older wanting a COVID-19 vaccine. In partnership with Chicago Public Schools (CPS) and the city’s public health department, the Chicago Transit Authority used a bus to host a mobile vaccination clinic that visited various CPS high schools. Similarly, Kitsap Transit in Washington State partnered with a community health organization to use a transit center as a vaccination site. Numerous agencies across the country engaged in partnerships to provide access to vaccination sites, including Athens On Demand Transit in Ohio, who, in partnership with Hocking Athens Perry Community Action, provided free rides to vaccination appointments.

Over one quarter of the initiatives identified in the literature scan were related to providing access to food or supplies like medications to members of the community in need, such as older adults, persons with disabilities, or transit-reliant people. Transit agencies partnered with nonprofits, food banks, and local and state government to deliver food and supplies to people in their communities. For example, VIA Transit in San Antonio, Texas, partnered with food banks in the community to deliver food to residents while they were under stay-at-home orders. Multiple tribal transit agencies led food-delivery initiatives, including Big Woods Transit operated by the Bois Forte Band of Chippewa Tribe in Minnesota, who repurposed one of its buses to deliver food boxes throughout the community.

Less than 10 percent of the initiatives identified in the literature scan focused on piloting and/or implementing the use of new or innovative technology to address transit needs arising due to the pandemic, such as innovative cleaning and ventilation technologies, or new touch-free fare collection technologies. These initiatives often formed in partnership with private sector businesses or institutions of higher education. One such initiative arose in New Jersey through a partnership between New Jersey Transit (NJ Transit) and Rutgers University. NJ Transit contracted with Rutgers to explore the effectiveness of UV-C wavelength in eliminating viruses. In this project, Rutgers is also closely examining the layout of different models of buses to determine the optimal placement for the UV-C source. A similar project to evaluate the efficacy of UV-C lights was funded by the Vermont Agency of Transportation in partnership with Dartmouth College.

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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×

There are also examples from practice where COVID-19 provided the incentive to fast-track a preexisting technology initiative. The North Front Range Metropolitan Planning Organization (NFRMPO) in Fort Collins, Colorado, for example, accelerated key components of a One Call/ One Click Center that had been under development prior to the pandemic to serve as a central hub to connect individuals across a large two-county region (approximately the size of Connecticut) to private and public vaccination sites. This initiative involved partnerships with local transportation providers, county departments of health, and the county office of emergency management (NFRMPO 2022).

A small share of the initiatives evaluated in the initial literature scan were designed to expand access to the internet to support distance learning for school children and work-from-home operations. These initiatives were achieved using transit vehicles as mobile Wi-Fi hotspots. Monterey-Salinas Transit (MST) in California did just that as they partnered with the City of Greenfield to use MST transit vehicles as mobile Wi-Fi hotspots to facilitate distance learning.

Initiatives designed for expanding access to COVID-19 testing, whether at a transit hub or through a mobile testing clinic, accounted for another smaller share of the examples identified in the initial scan. Central Midlands Transit in South Carolina partnered with the Department of Health and Environmental Control to offer COVID-19 testing at one of its transit hubs.

2.3 Cross-Sectoral Partnerships

The team identified a variety of cross-sectoral partnerships that formed to implement the nontraditional transit initiatives. Of the initiatives identified in the literature scan, over 80 percent involved an identifiable partner organization. The partner organizations fell into one of the following categories:

  • City, county, or municipal government;
  • Federal agency;
  • Food bank;
  • Hospital or other medical facility;
  • Internet service provider;
  • Nonprofit;
  • Public school;
  • State DOT;
  • State health and human services department;
  • University or other higher education institution;
  • Other private corporation or business;
  • Other state agency; or
  • Other transit organization or agency.

City, county, or municipal governments were involved in over a third of the nontraditional transit initiatives found in the literature scan. City, county, or municipal government partners were most likely to partake in initiatives related to vaccination distribution. Various state agencies, including state health and human services departments, state DOTs, and other state agencies, were involved in nearly a quarter of identified nontraditional transit initiatives. As with local government, vaccine-related initiatives were again the most common type of partnership involving state agencies. Food banks and nonprofits, including charitable organizations, associations, and community-based organizations, were involved in approximately one-fifth of identified nontraditional transit initiatives, the majority of which were vaccination-related initiatives or initiatives providing access to food and supplies.

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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×

2.4 Transit-Related Initiatives and Partnerships

The team also identified a variety of types of initiatives created during the pandemic that are related to traditional transit operations, many of which were designed with equity in mind, to expand or improve service. Some, but not all, of these transit-related initiatives involved partnerships. The initiatives fall into the following categories, which were first defined from the literature scan and then refined during the survey of practice described in Chapter 3:

  • Transit services for essential workers. Transit organization adjusted service times or routes to meet the transportation needs of essential workers.
  • Support transit-reliant communities. Transit organization adjusted or expanded service during the COVID-19 pandemic to better meet the needs of transit-reliant communities, including the elderly, low-income persons, and those with limited mobility. Such initiatives may have been in response to pandemic-related service gaps or to improve service with COVID-19 relief funding.
  • Supplement transit services. Transit organization and partner(s) utilized resources outside of traditional transit vehicles (i.e., transportation network companies, such as Uber or Lyft) as supplements to transit service to help manage capacity restrictions and prevent crowding on transit vehicles.
  • Expand transit infrastructure or service. Transit organizations and partners built new infrastructure (i.e., new bus lanes); expanded the number of traditional transit vehicles in use; or added to typical transit service coverage to help manage capacity limits on vehicles or to otherwise improve service with COVID-19 relief funding. Some of these expansions targeted preparation for future recovery rather than specifically responding to a pandemic-related need.
  • Support accessible communications for transit users. Transit organization and community partner(s) worked together to enhance communications materials and capabilities. This included developing more accessible communication for elderly riders or riders with disabilities and adding multilingual resources in transit stations or on transit vehicles. Accessible communications were particularly important as transit organizations were rapidly disseminating public health information and service adjustments.
  • Provide access to personal protective equipment (PPE) and other infection-control supplies for transit workers or riders. Transit organizations worked together to obtain and distribute PPE to transit workers and riders, along with other infection-control supplies, such as hand sanitizer and driver barriers. This often involved coordination of multiple transit operators within a state, either through an association or state DOT.
  • Transit workforce development. Transit organization and partner(s) collaborated to expand and diversify the transit workforce in response to worker shortages precipitated by the pandemic. This included targeted recruitment through community organizations.
  • Reduced or eliminated fares. Transit organization reduced or eliminated fares for select or all transit riders in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Other adjustment to transit service. Transit organization adjusted transit service in response to service gaps arising from reduced service for other modes (i.e., expanded eligibility for use of demand response services when fixed route service was limited in response to COVID-19) or other adjustment.

The most common transit-related initiatives identified in the literature scan were supporting transit-reliant communities and supplementing transit services. In North Carolina, the Greensboro Transit Agency, in partnership with the Greensboro Sportsplex and Cone Health and the Interactive Resource Center, implemented an initiative to provide service for residents experiencing homelessness to the city’s free shelter-in-place option. Transit agencies, in places like Denver, Colorado; Michigan; Miami-Dade County, Florida; and Solano County, California, supplemented their service by partnering with private rideshare operators to reduce crowding

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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×

on transit vehicles and increase mobility options. The next largest category of identified transit-related initiatives in the literature scan involved providing transit services for essential workers, including an initiative in Houston, Texas, to shuttle essential health care workers directly to the Houston Medical Center.

The scan also identified initiatives that involved transit workforce development, expanding transit infrastructure, and supporting language access to transit users. In an effort accelerated by the pandemic, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority partnered with four cities to rapidly construct 14 miles of bus lanes to reduce crowding on vehicles and improve reliability. Metro Transit in St. Louis, Missouri, supported language access for transit riders in a partnership with the St. Louis Mosaic Project to post multilingual COVID-19 information on transit vehicles and shelters. In the Atlanta, Georgia, region, the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) collaborated with the Latin American Association to recruit bilingual workers.

Other initiatives focused on providing access to PPE and other supplies. The New Mexico Transit Association partnered with Homeland Security and the State Emergency Management Department to provide PPE to transit agencies across the state. The Chickasaw Nation Transportation Services partnered with the Oklahoma Transit Association to secure hand sanitizer at the onset of the pandemic, when it was difficult to procure. They also collaborated with Oklahoma DOT on securing and installing operator barriers in transit vehicles and acted quickly to use CARES funding to purchase additional vehicles to help manage capacity when occupation limits were set due to public health concerns. Coordination across Chickasaw Nation offices also supported access to PPE.

Of the transit-related initiatives identified in the literature scan, nearly three-quarters involved a clearly identifiable partner. City, county, or municipal governments were involved as partners in about a third of the identified initiatives, most of which were initiatives to support transit-reliant communities or to expand transit infrastructure. Nonprofits were involved as partners in a smaller share of initiatives, partnering to promote transit workforce development and to support language access. Private rideshare operators were also involved as partners in some initiatives, helping to supplement transit service. Hospitals or other medical facilities were partners in helping to provide transit service to essential workers and support transit-reliant populations. Other state agencies or other transit organizations or agencies were involved as partners in some initiatives, such as partnering to provide transit service for essential workers and to provide access to PPE for transit workers.

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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×
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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×
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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×
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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×
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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×
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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×
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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×
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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×
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Suggested Citation:"2 Pandemic Partnerships: Findings from Literature Scan." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2023. Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26892.
×
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The COVID-19 pandemic had a disproportionate impact on historically marginalized communities—including Black, Latino, and low-income individuals, as well as older adults, and people with chronic health conditions or disabilities. As transit agencies build toward recovery and rethink or reimagine their operations, they might consider grounding their decision-making in equity principles.

The TRB Transit Cooperative Research Program's TCRP Synthesis 167: Partnerships for Equitable Pandemic Response and Recovery identifies how transit agencies were able to quickly pivot during the pandemic to deploy resources for other temporary “incidental uses” and respond to the need for essential services. Through these incidental uses of vehicles and facilities, public transit agencies across the country kept workers actively employed while expanding equitable access in unprecedented ways.

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