CTA reviewing seating policy for pregnant women

  • (Chicago Tribune)
(Chicago Tribune)
November 18, 2013|By Tracy Swartz, @tracyswartz | RedEye

Do pregnant women deserve priority seats on the CTA?

CTA rider Erin Fowler says they do. She told the CTA board at last week's meeting the CTA should announce that riders should give up their seats to pregnant women. She suggested expectant mothers wear buttons so other riders will know to yield their seats.

"Get on the PA system and say we have an expectant mother, someone please offer their seat," Fowler said.

Federal law requires the CTA to designate priority seats for the elderly and riders with disabilities. There are signs indicating these spots on buses and trains. And although expectant mothers are sometimes included in audio announcements, the CTA is not consistent in asking riders to give up their seats for pregnant women.

That may change. CTA President Forrest Claypool said he believes women in the late stages of pregnancy should be accommodated.

The CTA has been cracking down on priority seating scofflaws in the last year. Last fall, the CTA began an information campaign reminding riders to fold up their strollers when the bus gets crowded.

Nevertheless, since then, a handful of riders including one at last week's meeting have complained to the CTA board that large strollers in priority seats are still a problem.

Mail fail

Chicago Card riders who verified their information to get their Ventra card and still have not received a Ventra card, stop checking your mailbox. The Twitter account for Ventra, the CTA's new fare payment system, announced last week it had finished all its mailings.

Riders who did not receive a card in the mail are encouraged to go to a retailer or a CTA station and buy a card for $5, which will be refunded as transit credit upon card registration. Riders will then have to transfer their balances to their Ventra card.

Stationary

A weekly dispatch from a CTA station of note

This week: Noyes Purple Line

Make some noise for Noyes, one of the shining stars of the northern Purple Line. While other Purple Line stops have seen ridership declines of 2 percent or more, the Evanston stop has seen flat ridership this year through July, the latest CTA ridership data available. On Saturday night after the Northwestern-Michigan game, as crowds waited in the rain to enter the Central stop, the station closest to Northwestern's Ryan Field, there was little wait at Noyes, the station directly south of Central.

Next up: Lake Red Line

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