Still Stranded, One Year Later

Life became more difficult over the past year for Linden resident Anita Rosvanis, 39. She lost her fiancée in July after a months-long battle with cancer. Rosvanis also had to stop working for six months while she cared for him.

“We’re just starting to catch back up,” Rosvanis says.

WOSU profiled Rosvanis, a mother of three, last year as part of our “Chasing The Dream” project investigating why Columbus is the second most economically segregated city in the country.

Rosvanis traveled by three COTA buses to her job in Gahanna as a home health care aide. The journey took her an hour and a half each way. She earned $9 an hour.

Today, Rosvanis continues to struggle with transportation to get to work.  Some days, she still travels by bus to her new Gahanna area job at ARC Industries, where Rosvanis works as a personal care aide to employees with developmental disabilities.

It can take as long to get to her new job as her old one. Some days, however, a friend will drive her to save her time, which is time Rosvanis can’t spend with family. She normally works from 9-3, but often does not get home until 5 p.m.

She also earns more money, $13 an hour.

“It’s helped a lot, but you know with the death, we try to get ahead, but we’re behind because for six months I didn’t work because I had to stay home and take care of him,” Rosvanis says.

Rosavnis says she bought a vehicle earlier this year, but it broke down four months later and repairs were too expensive.

In the city of Columbus, 19.7 percent of African-American residents don’t own a car. That’s compared to 7.6 percent of white residents and 9.1 percent of Latino residents.

A study released last year found that Columbus is the second-largest city in the country without intercity public transit, with neither bus service nor light rail.

Rosvanis is hopeful her situation can improve in the next year.

“Maybe eventually I might be, but right now no, I’m still in the same situation I was a year ago,” Rosavnis says.

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