Bicycle Advisory Committee Resolution

To:       Minneapolis City Council, Minneapolis Public Works

From:     Minneapolis Bicycle Advisory Committee

Date:      September 25, 2019

Subject:  Vision Zero & Enforcement

 

Vision Zero & Enforcement

As we engage around Vision Zero strategies, the Minneapolis Bicycle Advisory Committee has serious concerns about driver behavior.

People driving cars engage in life-threatening behavior, including speeding, distracted or impaired driving, and running red lights.

People driving cars are subject to very few consequences, even after harming or killing someone walking, biking, rolling, driving, or using transit.

Minneapolis streets are currently designed to enable speeding in most locations, even for more dangerous larger vehicles, such as SUVs and trucks.

The potential for injury or death by car deters many people from walking, biking and rolling. 

 

At the same time, the Committee has serious concerns about the application of automated or police enforcement.

Automated enforcement has seen measurable impact in other cities, both positive (reduction of injuries) and negative (disproportionately impacted communities of color).  

Past implementations of Vision Zero in the U.S. have seen police enforcement targeting people walking, biking or rolling rather than people driving. The potential for injury or death by police deters many people of color from walking, biking and rolling. 

The Minneapolis Police Department’s Stop Info Dashboard shows that there is racial disparity in traffic stops. We have seen no evidence that the proposed $562,029 for traffic enforcement in 2020 will not continue these disparities. There has been minimal evidenced ability to change police behavior outside of reducing or eliminating funding for police enforcement, and limited success with community accountability mechanisms.  

Flat fines for enforcement may be ignored by people with high incomes, while being a disproportionate burden for people with low incomes. 

 

Vision Zero can significantly advance the City’s Climate Action Plan, further align the City with the Complete Streets Policy, and advance racial equity. If a larger share of people felt comfortable walking, biking and rolling for more of their trips, the City would reap many benefits, including reduced congestion, cleaner air, fewer pollution-related illnesses, reduced greenhouse gas emissions, health benefits from active transportation, and financial savings to households who are unburdened from the obligation to own a car.

We call on the City of Minneapolis to ensure that any work around Vision Zero protects all people who walk, bike and roll from harm by people driving cars, by police, and inequitable financial penalties.

 

Last updated Oct 7, 2019

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