Rural Transit Day
annually on July 16th (since 2019)
Quality of life for those who live in rural areas and are unable to drive can be maintained with transit, which provides people with access to healthcare, jobs, education, recreational and social destinations, and more. In 1979, the Federal Transit Administration began providing funds to establish and maintain transit systems in communities with less than 50,000 people. Not too long after, in 1987, the National Rural Transit Assistance Program (National RTAP) was created "to promote the safe and effective delivery of public transportation services in rural areas and to facilitate more efficient use of public transportation resources." Its mission is "to address the training and technical assistance needs of rural and tribal transit operators across the nation, and to support the state RTAP programs."
In 2019, National RTAP created Rural Transit Day, a day that focuses on what transit agencies are doing to recognize passengers and staff. Each year there is a Rural Transit Day Twitter Chat "where participants share thoughts about the benefits of rural transit, along with challenges and solutions." Transit agencies show their commitment to rural transit by taking the Rural Transit Day Pledge. Rural Transit Day Contests are also regularly a part of the day.
How to Observe Rural Transit Day
Participate by taking part in the #RuralTransitDay Twitter Chat. If you are part of a transit agency, you could take the Rural Transit Day Pledge to show your commitment to rural transit. Check the day's official webpage to see if any Rural Transit Day Contests are being held, to access Rural Transit Day Hero cards, and to find current information about the day. You could also use the day to learn more about the National Rural Transit Assistance Program.