Updated 12/21/2009 11:42 PM
Students Rally Against Elimination Of Free MetroCards
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Another rally was held Monday to protest the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s plans to phase-out the popular free student MetroCard program.
Dozens of people gathered in front of the agency's headquarters to voice their outrage over the proposal.
If approved, more than half-a-million students would have to pay full fares by 2011.
Students say they would not be able to afford getting to school.
"That's how you lower education rates, because people are going to want to cut school and not come to school because friends are telling me they're not coming to school because they don't have their bus cards,” said one student. “It's the only way for me to get to school.”
“My parents can't provide for me to get to school every day,” said another.
“I'm out here because I want my MTA card back, because it's not fair for other children not to get an education, because it's not making them very smart,” said a third.
The MTA has several other service cut proposals to bridge a nearly $400 million budget gap.
The plan would eliminate the W and Z subway lines and more than 20 bus routes, shorten the G and M lines, and reduce service during off-peak hours.
The service cuts are not scheduled to take effect until next spring, after public hearings and another board vote.