Economic justice and labor organizations and economic development and public health agencies from seven Bay Area counties gathered in April to strategize about how to ensure that billions of dollars in transportation investment result in quality jobs.
Plan Bay Area 2040 (PBA 2040) is the regional long-term transportation and land use plan that includes $287 billion in transportation investments. After years of advocacy from the Quality Jobs Network (QJN), in November 2015 the Metropolitan Transportation Commission and the Association of Bay Area Governments voted to include a performance target that seeks to align billions of regional transportation dollars with the creation and retention of family-supporting jobs.
Workshop participants brainstormed and discussed ideas across multiple industry sectors to materialize the quality jobs performance target. Among the ideas proposed:
- Increase transit operations funds and ensure labor standards apply to all transit operators
- Upzoning should be linked to quality job standards
- Highly subsidized regional projects must ensure quality construction and service jobs, improved access to those jobs for disadvantaged residents, and increased apprenticeship opportunities for disadvantaged youth and residents
- All development projects or plans receiving public funding should adhere to basic job standards.
- Regional funds should support access to quality jobs for people with disabilities
- The regional agencies could provide technical assistance and help convene cities to coordinate on issues such as enforcement of wage and hour protections.
- Resources and incentives should be made available to help local communities develop projects that incorporate strong policies to support growth of quality, family-supporting jobs and worker protections.
In the coming months, the community, equity, and economic justice organizations collaborating through the QJN will be working to develop and advocate for regional policy recommendations to make the new “good jobs” target real.
If your organization is interested in joining the coalition, please contact Belén Seara at email@example.com.