In 2018, the UN General Assembly declared June 3 to be World Bicycle Day. Bicycles truly are wonderful freedom and connection machines.
But underlying this amazing invention is serious inequity for riders who are black, brown, poor, or female. The bicycle industry is largely white and male, and focused to a great extent on recreational or club riders to the exclusion of transportation or commuter riders.
In Nashville, I know of no bicycle shops that are exclusively minority-owned. (Please send me information if you know differently!)
Today I want to highlight some groups who are doing fantastic work with inclusivity and support for bicycle riders of all types. Some are 501(c)(3) groups and accept donations; some have Patreons to which you can contribute; all are worth promoting and boosting on a wider scale.
Group rides in Nashville that are diverse include the Domestiques (road riders, faster paced) and the Wednesday Night Friendly Ride (road and greenway rides, slower paced; based out of Green Fleet Bicycle Shop on Jefferson Street; rides usually posted here). Group rides may be postponed during the pandemic.
Civil Bikes “brings attention to unseen and unheard stories about Atlanta.” Walking and biking tours are currently on hold; co-sponsoring “where you are” event on June 19-21 called Move and Occupy (see the website for information).
Black Girls Do Bike: “Growing a community of women/girls of color (and their supporters) who share a passion for cycling.”
The Brown Bike Girl, Courtney Williams. Bicycle advocacy consultant and first Bicycle Mayor of New York City.
Chicago-based Equiticity is a “racial equity movement working to improve the lives of Black, Brown and Indigenous people of color by harnessing our collective power through programming and advocating for racial equity, increased mobility and racial justice across the U.S.”