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Protesters Call for MBTA to Offer Reduced-Fare Option for Low-Income Riders

Protesters gathered in Boston Monday to call out the MBTA.

The demonstrators are demanding the agency provide a reduced-fare option for low-income riders in light of recent fare hikes and delays.

Advocates from Community Labor United and the Green Justice Coalition took part in the protest. They said the MBTA's service has become unreliable and unaffordable.

"I walk most places now since the last fare hike because I can't afford it," said David Noiles, a father from Roxbury.

Noiles and others took their message to the MBTA's Fiscal Management and Control Board meeting. Public comment on the topic lasted for over an hour.

"You expect us to pay these ridiculous prices, but don't even have the decency to run on time." Angelica Veloz of Lynn said.

After dozens testified in support of a reduced-fare program, board members addressed the group.

"I just want to make the public understands you are being heard and you are being seen," Vice Chairwoman Monica Tibbits-Nutt said.

The broad said it intends to do a feasibility study on the reduced-fare program and have additional discussion at its next meeting in August.

"We need to understand what the impact is, the feasibility on the agency and how in the world we are going to administer it," Tibbits-Nutt said.

The board also received an update from MBTA General Manager Steven Poftak. He said repairs are on track on the red line following last month's derailment near the JFK-UMass station. The goal is to have all signals restored by mid-August.

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