SEPTA to Remove Gender Stickers From Transpasses

septaPhiladelphia Riders Against Gender Exclusion are celebrating today as SEPTA has announced to remove gender stickers from all monthly transit passes by 2015. According to a RAGE press release, “A fare policy proposal will be submitted to SEPTA’s board of directors that includes this change beginning in the second half of 2013.”

The campaign to get SEPTA to change this policy began in 2009, when RAGE members started collecting signatures for the “M” and “F” removal and met with SEPTA general manager Joe Casey, who then agreed to remove the fare stickers when a new fare system was implemented. However, as we’ve documented in the past, that system has been delayed over and over again, as Harrisburg politicians continued cutting the state transportation budget. [Clarification: SEPTA says the new Smartcard (tokenless) system is on its way to becoming a reality in a few short years.]

Hearings are planned for Spring 2013. “RAGE eagerly awaits this much-needed policy change, and intends to participate in the process to ensure that removing the gender stickers is a part of the final fare policy passed by the SEPTA board next spring.”

Councilwoman Blondell Reynolds Brown recently advocated getting rid of the policy, too. She has previously worked with the Liberty City LGBT Democratic Club to get rid of the discriminatory practice, and introduced a resolution to Council that called on SEPTA to do so. “At the end of the process and debate, we want Philadelphians of all cultures, walks of life and backgrounds to get through each day without feeling discriminated against – without someone dimming their shine.  We hope this resolution will move the needle further toward our goal,” she recently stated.

9 Responses to “ SEPTA to Remove Gender Stickers From Transpasses ”

  1. Matt Hazz says:

    Wait, is that what that ‘M’ sticker is on my pass? Always wondered what that was for. What happens if I scape it off? Glad it is going away.

    - h4zzmatt

  2. barryg says:

    The new fare system is not in limbo. It is already paid for and being implemented now.

  3. John Q. public says:

    WTF? Since when is identifying someone as a female discriminatory? Should I now ignore the M and F signs on public rest rooms? Some people need to get a life!

  4. And I am proud to have been the member of Liberty City who pestered Blondell Reynolds Brown’s office over this.

  5. Heather says:

    In response to Matt, it is discriminatory because it forces the holder of the tranpass to be identified as “male” or “female”– ignoring the fact that this doesn’t leave options for those who identify otherwise, the holder of the transpass has no say in how they are identified on their pass. The employee selling the pass slaps a sticker on there based on their assumptions alone. I have known people to be assigned the wrong sticker because they may look or dress outside of their gender norm. Needless to say, this is extremely insulting and leads to a month of uncomfortable train rides when Septa employees are constantly questioning whether your pass actually belongs to you.

    I am glad to see this change finally happening. The sticker system seemed to be a discriminatory and somewhat useless method, anyway. As I understand it the stickers were used to try to help prevent people from lending or sharing transpasses so the actual owner of the transpass could be more easily identified (solely via their gender, so in theory any female could pass their card off to another female to use, but not a male).

  6. Philly Man says:

    Heather, if you dress outside your gender norm then you are weird. There are not enough weird people around, and never will be, to withdraw an effective system for detecting fraud. Eliminating M or F on passes increases the chance of fraud by 50%. And believe me, there are lots of people in this city willing to commit fraud against SEPTA. If they are successful, then we will have to raise your fare even higher than it is now. What’s not to understand?

  7. Dan says:

    I don’t believe the system should be updated at all. Reading the information on SEPTA’s website, it says that these updates are mostly for people that rarely use septa; but if you think about it, it will hurt everyone else who uses it everyday. Since currently buying a Zone pass will give you unlimited rides on any form of transit, in that month, it seems it will cost more money for people when they switch. The form a EZ pass will replace the unlimited rides, the pass already costs myself nearly $200 and I frequently take the bus, El, and most importantly the regional rails. I’m all for equality, but know that its gonna cost a hell of a lot more each month really make me think.

  8. Luckynkl says:

    M/F designates sex, not gender (masculinity/femininity). If you don’t know the difference, go home and ask your mom and dad where you came from.

    Basically, men in dresses (and a few token women) are demanding that the public participate in their porn fantasies and kinky fetishes. They get their freak on by dressing up and pretending to be the opposite sex and demand that the public play along with it. Rapists and pedophiles are already having a field day with these new “gender” laws, which allows men to claim they’re women, which enables them to access and violate woman-only space, such as bathrooms and locker rooms. It allows sick, dangerous men to share the bathroom with your 9 year old daughter so they can masturbate to the sound of her peeing. Some trans are harmless but many aren’t. I think these gender laws will be struck down and abolished once enough women and young girls have been murdered, raped and impregnated by them. The cases are already piling up.

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