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4to40 Transit Travel Training featured on Global News Regina

Regina program helps those with disabilities transition from Paratransit to city buses

Transit Travel Training

For people with disabilities, getting around the city can be daunting. But a unique program launched last year is making a difference in helping those individuals gain freedom and independence.

The Travel Training Program started as a pilot project in 2018 and is a partnership between the city, the University of Regina and Creative Options Regina.

Independence is one of the greatest things that’s come from this program,” said Ben Morris, creative director with Creative Options Regina. “It’s helped people get out there easily and as much as they want to.

“The first person who went through with us in its trial year was actually able to find gainful employment, based on the fact that they had learned to use conventional transit.”

“You had to book [Paratransit] in advance, and sometimes, if you wanted a trip the day of, you weren’t guaranteed a trip,” Pagan said.

But that all changed last year, when the pair made the jump to city transit after graduating from the program.

“We’ve been able to get around the whole city, basically,” Paige said. “Some places that we’ve never been before; other places we are going constantly because it’s our favourite hangout place. It’s just a sense of freedom where we don’t have to rely on Paratransit all the time.”

When it comes to making the switch, it comes down to fear for many. But thanks to transit travel trainers like Dylan Morin, who also went through the program, that fear quickly goes away.

“I’ve seen growth in a lot of people and hopefully it gets the demand off of Paratransit and more on regular transit,” Morin said. “It gives you the freedom and the chance to go wherever you want, whenever you want with hands-on training.”

So far, Morris is calling the program a success, saying the demand is increasing with two people currently on the waiting list.

“We’ve had quite a few asks to come out and speak to different organizations around the city, and every time we are there, we are getting questions about accessing the program,” Morris said.

For Pagan and Paige, the program means new opportunities and a new sense of confidence.

“You can’t live in fear,” Pagan said. “How do you know if you don’t try? I’ve learned that since I moved out, I always try new things and this is one of the best thing that’s ever happened to me.”

View the article on the Global News Regina website.

 

Canadian Transit at the Forefront of Equitable Mobility

National AccessAbility Week is an important annual event that celebrates the progress we have made as a society to facilitate accessibility and promote inclusion throughout our communities and workplaces. This year, National AccessAbility Week took place from May 27 to June 2, marking a time to recognize the milestones that Canadian individuals, communities, and workplaces have undertaken in order to “actively remove barriers and give Canadians of all abilities a better chance to succeed,” as stated on the Government of Canada. “We need to change the way we think, talk and act about barriers to participation and accessibility, and we need to do it right from the start, not as an afterthought. An inclusive Canada is one where all Canadians can participate and have an equal opportunity to succeed in their workplaces and communities.”

York Region Transit’s manager of Mobility Plus, Sharon Doyle, puts is as such: “Our passengers always come first, and we are built on a foundation of inclusivity. Everyone should have opportunity for independent and spontaneous travel, no matter their circumstances. When people have access to transportation, individuals and communities thrive.”

At CUTA, our mission is to inspire and influence the evolution of integrated urban mobility, and that includes equal access to mobility for people with disabilities. For this reason, we have chosen to highlight three outstanding projects with a focus on accessibility from our transit members, showcasing excellence and innovation in making Canadian urban mobility more equitable and available to all.

Regina Transit: Travel Training Program

Regina Transit is actively supporting people who experience disabilities by offering a program that shows participants how to use fixed-route transit service through its new travel training program. Paratransit typically does not allow people to travel with the utmost flexibility and spontaneity because trips must be booked in advance, and there are specific trip times to adhere to.

Using fixed-route transit enables people currently using paratransit to have another travel option. Regina’s program is unique because it is a partnership between the City of Regina, Creative Options Regina (a community-based organization supporting people experiencing disabilities), and the University of Regina’s 4to40 program.

People experiencing disabilities are hired to deliver the training creating meaningful employment.  For more information go to the 4to40.ca website and click on the travel training tab.

 

View the Full article here: http://cutaactu.ca/en/blog-posts/canadian-transit-forefront-equitable-mobility