Transit Passengers and Civil Rights

This study examined what rights transit authorities have in ejecting or excluding persons who constitute a danger or annoyance to other passengers and the due process rights that members of the traveling public have in the use of transit. The report discusses (1) responses by transit agencies to a survey on policies and procedures; (2) what the transit authority's obligations are to serve the public; (3) whether there is a constitutional right to travel via transit; (4) when restrictions on the use of transit facilities may implicate the First Amendment's rights of free speech and assembly; (5) what the transit authority's lawful responses are when there is suspicious activity or security threats; (6) what the transit authority's lawful responses are when there is unruly behavior or the presence of sex offenders in the transit system; (7) what the transit authority's obligations are regarding a transit user's service animal; (8) what the transit authority's potential liability is under the civil rights laws for a violation by the transit authority of a user's constitutional rights; (9) the standard of judicial review, i.e., level of scrutiny, that the courts would apply to transit regulations or policies that provide for the temporary or permanent suspension of transit users from the system; (10) whether the transit authority should have specific and clearly defined procedures in place concerning the barring of transit users; and (11) if a transit user is refused or suspended or barred from using transit facilities, what procedures would satisfy due process.

  • Record URL:
  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Distribution, posting, or copying of this PDF is strictly prohibited without written permission of the Transportation Research Board of the National Academy of Sciences. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials in this PDF are copyrighted by the National Academy of Sciences. Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved
  • Authors:
    • Thomas, Larry W
  • Publication Date: 2005-6


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Print
  • Features: Appendices; Tables;
  • Pagination: 67p
  • Serial:
  • Publication flags:

    Open Access (libre)

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01002614
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: TCRP Project J-5
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Jul 29 2005 3:22PM