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Title VI, Environmental Justice, and Customer Service January 24, 2013 Presented by: Robbie L. Sarles, President RLS & Associates, Inc.

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Presentation on theme: "Title VI, Environmental Justice, and Customer Service January 24, 2013 Presented by: Robbie L. Sarles, President RLS & Associates, Inc."— Presentation transcript:

1 Title VI, Environmental Justice, and Customer Service January 24, 2013 Presented by: Robbie L. Sarles, President RLS & Associates, Inc.

2 Objectives Overview of civil rights legislation requirements for transit Enable agencies to develop appropriate Title VI plans and assess compliance Provide guidance on the development of public participation plans

3 Objectives Provide guidance on methods to eliminate or prevent civil rights violations Provide effective customer service insights and tools

4 Civil Rights Related Requirements for Transit Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 Providing Language Access to Persons with Limited English Proficiency (LEP) – Executive Order Environmental Justice – Executive Order 12898

5 Title VI and ADA Title VI Protection based on race, color, or national origin Is not enforceable in court and does not create any rights or remedies ADA Protection based on disability Is enforceable in court and does create rights and remedies

6 Unintentional Discrimination Transit service discrimination can occur in many ways, including: Assigning buses to routes (old vs. new buses) Crowding allowed on buses Service headways Service on-time performance Temporal distribution of service (time of day, day of week)

7 FTAs Title VI Circular Distinguishes between Title VI and Environmental Justice by creating two circulars Title VI Requirements and Guidance for Federal Transit Administration Recipients, FTA C B Environmental Justice Policy Guidance for Federal Transit Administration Recipients, FTA C Considered equally important

8 Circulars Title VI Circular – B issued August 28, 2012, effective October 1, 2012 Environmental Justice Circular – issued July 14, 2012, effective August 15, 2012

9 Title VI Applies to all FTA recipients and sub- recipients No person in the United States shall, on the grounds of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance. 42 U.S.C., Section 2000d

10 Anyone intended to be the beneficiary of, applicant for, or participant in a Federally assisted program Applies to all persons All races All shades of color National Origin Title VI Protects:

11 Recipient State DOT Transit Agency Any Public or Private agency receiving FTA Funding Subrecipient Pass through recipient of FTA Financial Assistance Applicability

12 Later statutes extended the scope of Title VI to include prohibitions against discrimination on the basis of income, age, sex, and disability Institution-wide

13 Prohibits disparate impact discrimination Practice lacks a substantial legitimate justification There are other comparable alternatives that would result in less disparate impact The justification is a pretext for discrimination Intentional discrimination Disparate treatment DOT and DOJ Regulation

14 DOT Title VI Regulations Recipients may not: Deny any protected individual service, financial aid, or benefit under the program Provide any service, financial aid, or benefit that is different for protected individuals from that provided to others Subject a protected individual to segregation or separate treatment

15 DOT Title VI Regulations Recipients may not: (continued) Restrict a protected individual in the employment of any advantage or privilege enjoyed by others Treat protected individuals differently in terms of whether they satisfy admission, eligibility, or membership requirements Deny a protected individual the opportunity to participate in the provision of services

16 Recipients may not: (continued) Deny a protected individual the opportunity to participate as a member of a planning or advisory body Use criteria or methods of administration that have the effect of subjecting individuals to discrimination DOT Title VI Regulations

17 Recipients may not: (continued) Make decisions in regard to facility location with the purpose or effect of subjecting persons to discrimination Discriminate with regard to the routing, scheduling, or quality of transit service

18 DOT Title VI Regulations Recipients may not: (continued) Use race, color, or national origin as a basis for determining frequency of service, age and quality of vehicles assigned to routes, quality of stations serving different routes, and location of routes

19 Recipients MUST : Take affirmative action to assure non- discrimination DOT Title VI Regulations

20 FTA Guidance for Compliance Title VI Program Guidelines to FTA Recipients FTA Circular B Proposed circular was published September 29, 2011 and became effective October 1, Civil rights/accessibility

21 FTA Guidance for Compliance Annual Title VI Assurances Annual certification and assurance submission Direct Recipient Plan Submission Every 3 Years

22 Eight Required Actions 1.Develop Title VI complaint procedures Develop method for filing complaints Timeframe for accepting complaint Investigation and resolution timeframe Who investigates the complaint Who resolves the complaint Develop method for investigating and tracking complaints

23 Eight Required Actions 2.Record Title VI investigations, complaints, and lawsuits Maintain a list of active investigations conducted by entities other than FTA, lawsuits or complaints alleging discrimination Date filed Summary of allegation Current status Actions taken in response

24 Eight Required Actions 3.Provide meaningful access to persons with Limited English Proficiency – benefits, services, information, and other important portions of their programs Develop an LEP Plan or equivalent

25 4.Notify beneficiaries of Title VI protections Disseminate information to public Statement that agency operates programs without regard to race, color, national origin, sex, age, income, or disability (should be included in all printed materials regarding service) Procedures for requesting additional information on non-discrimination obligations Complaint procedures Eight Required Actions

26 4.Notify beneficiaries of Title VI protections (Continued) Use variety of dissemination methods General notification Document translation See example Eight Required Actions

27 5.Provide additional information upon request In response to a complaint investigation To resolve concerns about possible non- compliance 6.Prepare and submit a Title VI program Report certain general information as part of grant application Eight Required Actions

28 7.Analyze impact of construction projects National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Categorical exclusion ODOT will work with each system to determine when a NEPA analysis is required Eight Required Actions

29 8.Promote inclusive public participation Conduct public outreach and involvement activities with minority and low-income individuals Agency determines most appropriate approach Should seek out and consider the viewpoints of minority, low-income, and LEP populations when conducting public outreach and involvement activities Early and continuous opportunity for input Eight Required Actions

30 Guidance for Transit Agencies Certify your compliance Document Title VI complaints/lawsuits Inform public of your Title VI policy and complaint process Post complaint process in public locations and public documents Provide direction of where complaint process can be found

31 Prepare demographic analysis Maps with overlays showing distribution of service to protected populations Set system-wide service standards Vehicle load, headway, assignment, access, amenities Monitor and compare Assess impact of service and fare changes Guidance for Transit Agencies

32 ODOT is currently working through the processes to enable them to assist with the development of demographic information such as maps Reporting accurate service standard data is critical in ODOTs ability to set service standards

33 Guidance for Transit Agencies Document procedures for informing protected populations of upcoming service changes Provide a racial breakdown of non-elected boards, advisory councils, and committees Encourage participation of protected populations representatives

34 Potential Title VI Issues Unintentional exclusion of groups from the decision process Failure to consider impacts of alternatives and programs on groups Disproportionate impact

35 What is Public Participation Public participation in the transportation field is the process through which transportation agencies inform and engage people in the transportation decision-making process. The goals of public involvement are to provide information to the public and obtain feedback on analysis, recommendations, or decisions. Public Participation Strategies for Transit; Transportation Research Board; TCRP Synthesis #89; 2011

36 Public Participation Effective public participation is: Functional for planning Helps create better decisions Meaningful to the public Provides opportunity to influence decisions Promotes a sense of ownership in the transit system

37 Public Participation Plan Effective Public Participation Plans should: Link public participation to planning Recognize the intended public audience Define the transit systems intentions for public participation

38 Public Participation Plan Public Participation Plans must: Comply with Title VI and EJ Regulations Be inclusive Be appropriate for service and service area Be practical Be do-able Be documentable

39 Public Participation Plan Developing and implementing a good Public Participation Plan can be difficult. And, it is made more difficult when trying to engage traditionally hard to reach populations such as people with limited English language proficiency and low-income and minority communities

40 Public Participation Plan The four cornerstones of the Public Participation Plan are: Purpose People Methods Evaluation

41 Purpose What the public is involved to do and when The Plans Purpose should: List planning tasks to create a transit plan Establish which tasks require or benefit from public involvement Evaluate when planning tasks must be achieved and when the public must be involved

42 People Identifies those who are involved in community transit planning This Cornerstone should: Describe the public that will be involved in the process Describe the transit officials and local officials that will be involved in the process

43 Methods Identifies the specific methods for involving the public to achieve the tasks Methods are to: Increase the publics awareness of planning participation activities

44 Evaluation Documentation and evaluation of public participation In the Evaluation portion you will: Outline and establish procedures for documenting public participation and a protocol for evaluating public participation activities and results

45 Public Participation Plan If your Plan says you are going to do something, then you have to actually do it and be able to provide documentation to ODOT (as part of the TAR reviews)

46 Public Participation Incorporate Title VI requirements into policies and procedures 1. Scheduling policies 2. Fare polices 3. Eligibility policies 4. Service area policies

47 Public Participation Encourage and seek participation from those directly impacted 1. Who is impacted? 2. Where do I find those who are impacted? 3. How do I find the most appropriate meeting location and time?

48 Public Participation Contact minority community leaders, organizations, media, and safety and enforcement agencies 1. Churches 2. Civic Groups 3. Homeless Shelters

49 Public Participation Conduct community/public meetings 1. Where should meetings be held? 2. Who should be invited to the meetings? 3. How should I promote and advertise meetings to encourage attendance?

50 Public Participation Participate on civic and advisory committees 1. Workforce Development Boards 2. Community Action Boards 3. United Way Boards

51 Public Participation Set appropriate meeting location, time, and day and ensure accessibility and other needs are accommodated 1. Civic Centers and Community Centers 2. Schools and Libraries 3. Evening meetings 4. Saturday meetings

52 Public Participation Demonstrate consideration of community input in printed and communication materials 1. Publish participation results in local newspaper 2. Announce results on local radio 3. Post results on website

53 Public Participation Focus outreach to allow minorities and LEP populations the opportunity for involvement 1. Take the meeting to the people 2. Spend time in the community 3. Utilize the entire family of communication, including word of mouth

54 Public Participation Conduct awareness and sensitivity trainings 1. Provide training to front line staff 2. Provide training to transit leaders 3. Provide training to stakeholders

55 Public Participation Allow adequate time for public comment 1.Keep surveys, input opportunities available Allow adequate response time at least 45 days

56 Public Participation Communicate with other transit systems and share successful outreach methods 1. Establish a best practices techniques list on ODOTs new linked in site. Management-in-Ohio

57 Public Participation Meetings 1. Hold in accessible facility 2. Meeting notice should contain process to request alternate documents and assistive services 3. Public service announcements must be closed captioned

58 FTA Recipients must take responsible steps to ensure meaningful access to the benefits, services, information, and other important portions of their programs and activities for individuals who are LEP Limited English Proficiency – Title VI Requirements

59 Provide Meaningful Access to Persons with LEP and Low Literacy Persons with Limited English Proficiency (LEP) Persons who do not speak English as their primary language Persons who have a limited ability to read, write, speak, or understand English

60 Provide Meaningful Access to Persons with LEP and Low Literacy Households with Limited English Proficiency (LEP) No one over age 14 speaks English well, and is linguistically isolated

61 LEP Population in the U.S. More than 25 million do not speak English at all or well Increased by 80% from 1990 to 2010

62 LEP Population in the U.S. Other common languages Spanish Chinese Vietnamese Korean Greater than 11% of LEP persons take transit to work

63 Low Literacy National Literacy Council defines low literacy as: An individuals ability to read, write, and speak English and compute and solve problems at levels of proficiency necessary to function on the job and in society, to achieve ones goals, and develop ones knowledge and potential.

64 Low Literacy On a scale of 1 – 5, 21% had the lowest literacy skills (level 1) and 27% had the second lowest (level 2)

65 LEP Executive Order Each Federal agency shall examine the services it provides and develop and implement a system by which LEP persons can meaningfully access those services Required in all State DOT and FTA program applications and proposals (ODOT currently assures compliance at all transit systems

66 DOT LEP Guidance Two methods Agencies serving significant populations of LEP persons Develop a language implementation plan Agencies serving small populations of LEP persons Implement procedures to reasonably provide meaningful access

67 Significant LEP Population – Develop a Language Implementation Plan FTA publication Implementing the Department of Transportations Policy Guidance Concerning Recipients Responsibilities to Limited English Proficiency (LEP) Persons: A Handbook for Public Transportation Providers

68 Four Factors Included in Plan 1.Identify number or proportion of LEP persons eligible or likely to be served Compare service area with geographic distribution of LEP persons

69 Four Factors Included in Plan 2.Determine frequency with which LEP persons come into contact with the service Track number of calls or service requests made by LEP persons Track number of requests for a translator or travel trainer Track number of LEP persons that attended public meetings or outreach activities

70 3.Define the nature and importance of the program, activity, or service provided to LEP persons Systems mission statement Provide a trip purpose summary List major trip generators Four Factors Included in Plan

71 3. Define the nature and importance of the program, activity, or service provided to LEP persons (continued) Type of Information Fares/Tickets Route and Schedules Safety/Security/Evacuation

72 4.Identify resources and costs associated with providing meaningful access to LEP persons Identify others in community that address the needs of LEP persons Identify resources available in local community Resources that can provide oral and written translation Four Factors Included in Plan

73 Safe Harbor 5% or 1,000 individuals Written translation of vital documents for each group If you are a transit system claiming Safe Harbor you MUST support the claim with factual documentation Safe Harbor and LEP Thresholds

74 Vital Documents Documents critical for accessing recipients services or benefits Letters requiring response from customer Informing customers of free language assistance Complaint forms Notification of rights Safe Harbor and LEP Thresholds

75 Small LEP Population – Implement Reasonable Procedures to Provide Meaningful Access No written plan requirement Minimum recommendations Summaries of vital documents should be translated upon request Qualified community volunteers should be engaged to provide oral translation when needed Other actions as appropriate

76 Reasonable Steps Smaller agencies are encouraged to explore the most cost-effective means of delivering competent and accurate language services before limiting services due to resource concerns Reduce cost by technological advances, reasonable business practices, and sharing language assistance materials and resources

77 Reasonable steps – Providing Language Assistance Oral interpretation in person Train bilingual staff to serve as interpreters or translators Use qualified community volunteers to provide interpretive services Hire qualified interpreters for critical presentations/ meetings provided to a high volume of LEP persons Oral interpretation via commercially available telephonic interpretation services

78 Reasonable steps – Providing Language Assistance Guidance on oral interpretation services Ensure competency of interpreters Ensure interpretation is made in a timely manner Utilize skills of existing staff Contract with interpreters when there is no regular need for a particular language skill

79 Written translation Translate entire reports that provide essential information Translate a short description of the report Translate reports upon request Reasonable steps – Providing Language Assistance

80 Written Translation (continued) Use qualified translators to make sure documents are accurate Translate into languages where there is identified need (four factor analysis) Use pictures/pictograms for low-literacy persons

81 Use of Pictograms where possible Use Language identification cards (U.S. Census) Advertise in Ethnic Media Other Suggestions

82 Elements of an Effective Implementation Plan on Language Assistance Conduct needs assessment – 4 Factor Analysis Develop language assistance measures Train staff Translate vital documents as appropriate Provide notice to LEP persons Expand outreach efforts Monitor and update plan

83 Engaging Low-Literacy and LEP Populations in Transportation Decision Making Hold public meeting(s) in accessible locations and at accessible times Provide notice through radio announcements Be observant and sensitive to people who cannot read English Give opportunity to provide verbal comments Use maps, diagrams, pictures

84 New Title VI Circular Effective October 1, 2012 Requirements remain primarily the same Clarifies regulations and requirements Removal of most references to Environmental Justice (EJ) (replaced by new EJ Circular that provides distinct framework to assist grantees integrate EJ principles)

85 New Title VI Circular All FTA Recipients (ODOT) must submit to FTA: Title VI Notice to the Public Complaint Procedures Complaint Form Limited English Proficiency Plan & Public Involvement Plan List of investigations, lawsuits, and complaints

86 New Title VI Circular All FTA recipients must submit…(continued): Information regarding siting of fixed facilities (not construction projects) Table depicting racial composition of membership of non-elected bodies All transit providers regardless of size must adopt service standards and policies

87 New Title VI Circular Large transit providers – annual operating budgets of $10 million or more – must submit: Monitoring program Service and fare equity analysis Demographic analysis of customers Customer demographics and travel patterns

88 New Title VI Circular Includes templates and checklist for information submitted to FTA Flow charts of responsibilities Updated Title VI plans due dates: (from ODOT) Plans that expired prior to October 1, 2012 were due to FTA prior to October 1, 2012 (compliant with Circular A) Plans that expire after October 1, 2012 must submit a plan compliant with B by April 1, 2013

89 Title VI Plan Due Dates ODOT must comply with FTA established due dates All grantees are required to be in compliance based on the dates provided by ODOT All grantees should have already submitted a Title VI plan Public Participation Plans are due by January 30, 2013

90 Title VI Circular – State Requirements Clarifies existing requirements Requires demographic maps that overlay the percent minority and non-minority populations Requires charts that analyze the impacts of the distribution of state and federal funds

91 Environmental Justice Circular Provides framework for integrating EJ principles in transportation decision-making processes Discusses public outreach strategies when engaging EJ populations Planning Decision making Environmental reviews Discusses meaningful demographic information

92 Environmental Justice Circular Three principles of EJ 1. Avoid, minimize, or mitigate disproportionately high and adverse human health and environmental effects, including social and economic effects Minority populations Low-income populations

93 Environmental Justice Circular Three principles of EJ (continued) 2. Ensure full and fair participation by all potentially affected communities in the transportation decision-making process 3. Prevent the denial of, reduction in, or signification delay in receipt of benefits by minority or low-income populations

94 Environmental Justice Circular Three fundamental steps for an EJ analysis 1. Determine if there are any EJ populations potentially impacted 2. Consider potential effects 3. Determine whether any disproportionally high and adverse effects can be avoided, minimized, or mitigated and if there are off-setting benefits

95 Environmental Justice Population Compared to General Population Meaningfully greater determined on a case by case basis Always when the percentage of minority population exceeds 50%

96 Environmental Justice Analysis Required For: Service cuts, changes, or restructuring Building or extending a rail line Establishing a multi-modal station Increasing fares Building new facilities

97 Ensuring Compliance ODOT Procedures for securing compliance Identify deficiency or non-compliance Technical Assistance Review (TAR) Compliant required review process Notification to recipient Letter of finding Recipient response Planned corrective action Sufficient justification for action

98 Procedures for securing compliance (continued) Final decision ODOT USDOT Department of Justice Enforcement Proceeding Suspend or terminate Federal financial assistance Ensuring Compliance

99 Customer Service

100 Customer Service in Public Transportation No Industry Can Prosper That Does Not Place The Customer First Customer-Focused Public Transportation Can Make a Difference To Be Successful, Systems Must Implement Agency-Wide, Results-Oriented, Customer- Focused Programs

101 Obstacles to Good Customer Service Indifferent Employee Attitudes Union Opposition Lack of Support From Other Departments Understaffing Inadequate Communications Between Departments

102 Obstacles to Good Customer Service Inadequate Computer Systems/ Technology Inadequate Training in People Skills Inadequate Driver Selection Criteria Low Morale – No Team Spirit Conflicting Organizational Policies and Procedures Funding Limitations

103 Customer Service Goals Increase Customer Satisfaction Increase Ridership Improve System Image Increase Community Support


105 State of the Art Customer-Focused Transit Programs General Interaction Between the Customer and Transit System Obtaining and Using Customer Input Involving Employees in Customer-Focused Transit Service Methods to Achieve Customer Satisfaction

106 General Interaction Between the Customer and Transit System Mission Statement Public Route Timetables System Maps Web Page

107 General Interaction Mission Statements The Mission of Southwest Airlines is dedication to the highest quality of customer service delivered with a sense of warmth, friendliness, individual pride and company spirit.

108 General Interaction Mission Statements With our customer-first focus to exceed guests expectations, we pledge to provide a safe, dependable, and clean public transit system – delivered by a spirited, diverse workforce accountable to the people of our community.

109 General Interaction General Information Public Forum Regional Transit Map Visitor Map and Transit Guide Transit Riders Handbook Transit Information Call Center

110 General Interaction General Information Virtual Ride Guide on Website Information and Brochures Information Kiosks/Bus Stop Signs Print Advertising TV/Radio Advertising

111 General Interaction Technology Electronic Scrolling Signs Real Time Vehicle Location Information Internet Connections to Timetables

112 Obtaining and Using Customer Input Monitor Complaints Public Forums On-Board Surveys Telephone Surveys Employee Meetings Focus Groups – Honest Feedback Consumer Driven Planning Workshops

113 Involving Employees in Customer- Focused Public Transportation Employee Involvement is Key to Success Top to Bottom Must be Reflected in Corporate Culture

114 Involving Employees Employee Training Effective Verbal Skills Effective Non-Verbal Communication Situational Examples Empathetic Handling of Situations Establish Employees Credibility as a Professional

115 Involving Employees Employee Training How to Develop a Positive Responsive Relationship How to Add Value to the Service Make Every Interaction Positive Being Knowledgeable, Dependable, Reliable

116 Methods to Achieve Customer Satisfaction/Customer Loyalty Rider Discounts Guaranteed Ride Home Customer Loyalty Promotions

117 What is Missing?

118 Get to Know Your Customers To Help you Determine Your Systems Vision, Goals, and Objectives To Guide Planning Efforts To Aid in the Decision-Making Process To Help Transit Management, Board, Drivers and Customer Service Agents Stay Focused

119 Get to Know Your Customers To Avoid Mistakes To Build Relationships To Generate Loyalty To Develop Political Support To Mobilize Your Systems Best Supporters To Satisfy Your Mission

120 Get to Know Your Customers Understand Passenger Point of View, But Dont be Limited by it, or Create Unrealistic Expectations

121 Get to Know Your Customers Important Customer Service Questions o What are our customers lives really like? o What do they value? o What are their physical needs? o What is their psychological well being? o How does this translate to service needs? o What are their wants? o What are their aspirations?

122 Get to Know Your Customers Important Customer Service Questions o What motivates them? o What discourages them? o What are peoples bottom line expectations? o What must we do to meet and exceed this expectation every time? o How can we best communicate to our customers?

123 Get to Know Your Customers What are peoples bottom line expectations? What must we do to meet and exceed this expectation every time? How can we best communicate to our customers? How can we identify what we need to do better?

124 Get to Know Your Customers Knowing Your Customers Travel Needs o Who are your customers? o Why are they traveling? o Why are they using your service? o When to they travel? o Where do they go? o What other modes of travel to they use?

125 Get to Know Your Customers Knowing Your Customers Travel Needs In what circumstances do they use transit? What other locations and times do they want/need service? What problems do they encounter? Those they complain about? Those they accept as normal? What arent they telling you?

126 Get to Know Your Customers What do you know about customers you lost? What do you know about potential customers? How can we identify what we need to do better?

127 Different Populations Have Different Needs Service Security Technology

128 How Can We Improve? Finding and retaining quality employees Knowing your customers intimately Focusing departments on organizational purpose Creating easy to do business with delivery systems Training and supporting employees

129 How Can We Improve? Involving and empowering employees Recognizing and rewarding good performance and celebrating success Setting the tone and leading the way through personal example

130 130 Ten Demandments Earn my trust Inspire me Make it easy Put me in charge Guide me

131 Ten Demandments (continued) 24/7 Get to know me Exceed my expectations Reward me Stay with me

132 Conclusion Customer Service is an attitude woven throughout the agency!

133 CONTACT INFORMATION: Robbie L. Sarles RLS & Associates, Inc. Phone: Fax:

134 Workshop Materials Workshop materials are available on the ODOT Office of Transit Rural Transit webpage: /Transit/Pages/Rural.aspx /Transit/Pages/Rural.aspx

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