February 24, 2022

Civil rights activists express concern about IndyGo's commitment to the Black community



Updated Feb. 24 at 11:41 a.m.

Local civil rights activists are disappointed in Indianapolis’ public transit agency for its lack of diversity among the businesses it works with.

IndyGo’s most recent construction projects were done with white women-owned businesses. That’s the plan for the upcoming Purple Line, too.

The Concerned Clergy of Indianapolis, the Baptist Minister’s Alliance, and National Action Network of Indiana are among the organizations that have formally complained. In a letter to IndyGo CEO Inez Evans, they said the company’s lack of inclusivity contributes to economic disparities.

They said the company has failed to meet its goals of diversity, equity and inclusion for the past several years. IndyGo has denied the allegation.

Rev. David Greene, president of the Concerned Clergy, said the group is tired of IndyGo’s empty promises.

“It's the same old performance, same old results. Always told, it's going to be better next time,” Greene said. “And when next time comes, there's really no change.”

The letter to IndyGo places blame on the company’s executive leadership who, the groups said, have ignored these concerns for months.

IndyGo Director of Communications Carrie Black denied the claims that the company has fallen short of its diversity goals.

“IndyGo followed our best practices to ensure we executed our procurement process fairly to those responsive, qualified, and willing to bid on the project,” Black said in a statement.

She also said the contractor chosen for the Purple Line, Crider & Crider, contacted over 150 disadvantaged businesses for participation on the project. They are expected to continue inclusivity and diversity efforts until the job is finished.

This story has been updated with a response from IndyGo.

Contact WFYI economic equity reporter Sydney Dauphinais at sdauphinais@wfyi.org. Follow on Twitter: @syddauphinais.

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