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People March for Bus Stops in Beavercreek
BEAVERCREEK -- More than 100 people marched and protested on Pentagon Boulevard near the Mall at Fairfield Commons to get bus stops added in that area.
Many local activist groups like the NAACP and LEAD (Leaders for Equality and Action in Dayton) held a planned protest at noon Saturday to send a message to Beavercreek City Council to put bus stops on Pentagon Boulevard.
Supporters of the issue say people who rely on public transportation can't retain jobs, services and educational opportunities in Beavercreek because of the lack of bus stops there.
The nearest bus stop is on the Wright State Campus, nearly a mile and a half from the mall. The goal is to get at least three.
"We're going to keep marching, we're going to keep showing our faces, we're going to still show up and we're going to keep on until we get three buses in this area," said Rev. Bruce Burns of Peoples Community CME Church.
The Federal Highway Administration Office ruled last week that the city was violating people's civil rights by not allowing RTA bus stops on Pentagon Boulevard.
"That's how this all started because of some low-wage workers who were risking their lives to come out here in all types of weather," said Marie Geisel.
Those workers using public transportation to get to Beavercreek have to walk the mile and a half over the I-675 overpass. More than half of those bus riders are minorities.
"They're the ones that's using RTA to get the jobs. Walmart is remodeling, getting ready to expand, going to be hiring people, and those that may want to come from the other part of the city can't if they don't have reliable transportation."
Beavercreek is now required to develop a plan for the new stops.
The city of Beavercreek spent $50,000 to fight the mandate. A surprising move to some who say this shouldn't be an issue in the 20th century.
"I'm old enough to remember what it was like in the '50s and to be doing this in 2012-2013 in a way is shocking," said Geisel.
The groups who organized the march plan to have more until they see the bus stops installed.
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