Access ?

Access is a means of approaching or entering a place.

With this in mind how does a disabled person access transportation for Doctor appoints, grocery shopping, work or just getting together with friends?

A year ago my wife had a freak accident falling and sustaining a bilateral femur fracture. What we thought was going to be a temporary set back has lingered for over a year. We live in rural Texas, so public transportation is non-existent. To meet Doctors appointments an ambulance service had to be called and scheduled.

I don’t know if you have ever ridden in an ambulance for any distance but it is very uncomfortable and very expensive. We decided to purchase a wheelchair accessible van which has given us both a sense of freedom. We no longer have to schedule an ambulance to pick up and deliver her to appointments, what a relief that is.

If you have any thoughts or other solution to remedy this problem please let us hear them in the comment section below.

City Transport

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) became law in 1990. This law was enacted to protect people with disabilities from discrimination and afford them the same rights as everyone else, this includes public transportation.

Cities with public transportation must provide buses, taxies, rails or subways accessible for the disabled and in some cases you will need to phone and schedule pick up. In the private sector Lyft and Uber are making progress in accommodating the disabled and with a little research you will find companies that rent wheelchair accessible vans by the day or by the week.

Entering A Place

Remember, access means to be able to enter a place, so if you are in a wheelchair and you know that the bus runs a block from where you live but you can’t get there because the sidewalk is damage or its not safe to travel on, guess what, its not ADA compliant. Sidewalks should be safe to travel with ramps for easy on and off access. The city may or may not know of the situation but once they know, it should become a priority repair.
Any public domain must be accessible according to ADA regulations. City governments have made great progress in these areas, its not where it should be but its going in the right direction.

Disabled Population

According to the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau reported 56.7 million people in the United States have one or more disabilities. Almost 20% of the population, that’s one in five people that are dealing with disabilities. Our government started out behind the eight ball addressing these issues, so don’t expect to see immediate results in your area of need.

Through out history, by the time we recognize a need, draft and pass legislation to address the problem, we have a lot of catching up to do. unfortunately our government doesn’t get in the fast lane, they don’t get in the drive through at McDonalds.

If you know of an instance where they have let us know about it please, that should be an interest read!

With this population growing year by year more services will be required. The ADA will have its hands full overseeing regulations set forth for these folks. Disabilities are pretty much even with males at 12.5% and females at 12.7%. Older folks shoulder the load of disabilities, ages 65-74 years of age 25.4% and 75+ years of age are at 49.8%.

These numbers suggest for the most part, people age 18-74 are the ones moving about in public and are the ones needing access transportation for the disabled.

With Comitment Comes Success

Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness has been given to all humans by our creator and which our government was created to protect. We must stay committed to this, to make sure we ALL make it the best life we can live!

It is more blessed to give than receive, give of yourself and help someone in their quest of Life, Liberty and their pursuit of Happiness!

To read more about Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) go to https://adata.org

If you do extensive travel here in America or abroad check out this website https://wheelchairjimmy.com

If you have a short story about accessing public transportation please share it with us, contact chuck@extentyourtents.com

  1. It is an absolute delight to stumble across your blog about transportation and the disabled.  Being legally blind (poor distance vision) I can not drive.  Although I can see well enough to take care of my home, road signs in the distance are impossible to read leaving me to rely on alternate transpiration. Thankfully my insurance helps out with doctor appointments and now Lyft is a godsend. However there are many disabled people who suffer from isolation because things like cabs, Lyft and Uber are not cheap.  With that being said thank you for helping others to understand the challenges of the disabled. 

    • Thank you for your encouraging words. Through my wife’s experience I’ve learned a lot about what the disabled go through. I wish you nothing but the best in overcoming your difficulties.

  2. Hi, I can relate to your situation and understand how it feels to taking care of someone you love. My grandma used to stay with us. During that time she was half paralyzed. My Dad have to clean her up everyday and feed her and making sure she is ok. The most challenging part is to bring her out to church or to visit the doctor as we have to carry her out from the house and into the car. It is not easy at all. I am glad you found a solution with a van to bring her around.

    Thank you for this article, it reminds me of my grandma.

    • Thank you for stopping by, reading and commenting on the post. Transportation for the disabled is tough but with some effort it can be overcome. I’m sorry about your grandma’s disability and hopefully you had some great memories of her.

  3. Hello Chuck. Thank you for sharing this post on access transportation for the disabled. Taking care of a disabled one is not an easy task. Although I have not taken care of a disabled one before, I have know people who had gone through and are going through it. Transporting a disabled one is much easier with a personal car or a wheel for short distance; not easy to place them in the car too.

    I really wish there is a better way.

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