== History and Future Goals ==
=== 1996 MTA/BRU Consent Decree
The decree mandated several changes:
* Reinstating the discontinued monthly and biweekly bus pass and creation of weekly bus pass
* Establishment of a Joint Working Group (joint BRU and MTA policy making body that oversees the implementation of the Consent Decree)
The BRU claims to represent over 400,000 bus riders in Los Angeles County, the bus drivers, and the transit dependent including minorities, immigrants, students and low income workers. The BRU often cooperates with related civil rights groups to spread awareness, raise funds and bring class action lawsuits such as in the 1994 case against LACMTA.
Finally, the BRU organizes public speaking events and attends rallies, marches,and protests through the Drum and Chant Corps <ref>http://www.thestrategycenter.org/node/5678 "Campaigns"</ref>.
Stop the Transit Cuts
The BRU works to stop the elimination and reduction of bus service. As of 2011, they campaigned to stop the bus cuts of 11 lines and the reduction of 16 others <ref>http://www.thestrategycenter.org/campaign/mta-slashing-bus-service-attacking-civil-rights-bus-riders "MTA slashing bus service"</ref>.
No Fare Hike
In response to public pressure and the 1996 Consent Degree, the LACMTA bus fare was stable for 10 years. The BRU opposed plans for LACMTA's 1997 fare increases proposal that increased a daily pass from $3 to $5 . The BRU claims the increases hurt minorities and leads to an increase of automobile users, carbon emissions from the automobile usage and ulitmately climate change and lung disease. The LACTMA admitted that ridersip decreased by 5% within a year after the fare increases. In addition, ridership increased by 41% between 19882-1985 when fares were reduced<ref>http://www.thestrategycenter.org/campaign/no-fare-hike </ref>. ===== Clean Air and Economic Justice Plan for Measure R ===== The BRU reaches out the city and LACMTA leaders. In the past, the BRU has effectively brought pressure to Mayor Antonio Villagoirosa to support Measure R. After Measure R was passed, the BRU has continued to pressure the MTA to use the funds allocated by Measure R as planned and not redirect funds to highway and rail. The BRU has help rallies with community members speaking about their experiences of transit. Speakers describe the current state of overcrowded and often late work they miss from highly congested areas and the need for LACMTA to provide for minorities and low income workers who have hours outside the parameters of a traditional 9am-5pm job<ref>http://www.thestrategycenter.org/campaign/clean-air-and-economic-justice-plan-measure-r</ref>.
=== Goals ===
The BRU's main goals are to provide transit users equal access with a clean, safe, and affordable user experience. Some of their specific goals include<ref name="Bus Riders Union" />:
Critics of the BRU argue for the need to consider other forms of transit in addition to buses.
Advocates of rail argue that rail is need to restrict sprawl, reduce air pollution by promoting mass transit, save energy, and reduce traffic congestion. In addition, the federal subsidies for rail construction were either
used by the states or lost, "use it or lose it."<ref name="grengs">Grengs, Joe (2002). Community-Based Planning as a Source of Political Change: The Transit Equity Movement of the Bus Rider's Union. ''Journal of the American Planning Association'', 68(2), 165-175.</ref>
The BRU and transportation scholars do not always agree on how transit fare structures should change.<ref name="grengs" />