Program To Provide Free Bus Passes For Homeless In Central Arkansas

Mar 5, 2019

A Rock Region Metro bus travels through downtown Little Rock.
Credit Rock Region Metro

A new program has been launched to provide free transportation to homeless people in Pulaski County. Rock Region Metro partnered with several non-profit organizations to start the program last month. Becca Green, director of public engagement, says they’ve established a system to determine who is eligible for free bus passes. 

"The case worker will enter information on the clients in his or her care and determine using the system criteria agreed upon within the collusion if the person is eligible for a free ride," Green said.  

The non-profits who are involved in the program had approached Rock Region Metro to see if they would be willing to help people are are trying to emerge from homelessness, Green said. The initial goal is to provide free rides to a thousand people and hopefully grow that number as awareness of the program increases. 

The "Transportation Alliance Protection" program is designed to help people move from temporary to permanent housing. Green says she sees a lot of benefit from this program.

"Even though transportation has been a barrier to some people, getting permanent housing, there are many barriers, and so this is just one tool in the tool box as far as their ultimate goal of solving the problem of homelessness in our community," Green said.

Over 200 applications have been received so far, and Green expects to receive more as the year continues. Those involved in the program will then determine whether the program has value and should be continued.