Arrested Mobility: Addressing Racial Inequities in Bicycling

The reckoning with systemic racism has reached into nearly every corner of American life, including how bias affects people of color in bicycling.

Unequal application of helmet requirements and other laws, and a lack of diversity in the cycling industry are among issues that have been raised.

Innocence Powell and son on the Empire State Trail in Kingston, NY. photo: Matthew Fass / courtesy of

A recent webinar hosted by Scenic Hudson explored racial biases experienced by bicyclists stemming from unequal law enforcement and restricted access to economic, recreational and social opportunities.

“Arrested Mobility: Addressing the Racial Inequities in Bicycling” is the title of the May 27 program, presented by Charles T. Brown, founder of Equitable Cities, an urban planning, policy and research firm.

Brown addressed issues at the intersection of transportation, health and equity, and discusses the role of community organizing and transportation planning in achieving racial equality.

Jeffrey Anzevino, Scenic Hudson’s land use advocacy director, said that while his organization had not heard of specific bias incidents against bicyclists of color in the Hudson Valley, “that doesn’t mean it’s not happening, and it’s certainly happening in our parks.”

“We are looking at all our work now through the lens of diversity, equity and inclusion,” Anzevino said, “and we want to make sure that when people enjoy our parks, that they can feel safe and have a welcoming experience no matter what their background is.”

You can watch the complete webinar at


Follow Robert Brum’s Shifting Gears blog on cycling in the Hudson Valley.

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About the Author: Robert Brum