Today, TransLink emailed out a summary of the “Stakeholder Review” they did on HandyDART service. We have not had time to go through it in detail yet, but there are some interesting points:
The report states that “the number of people over the age of 70 in Metro Vancouver is expected to increase by approximately 55% over the next 10 years.” A 55% increase in people over 70 will greatly increase the need for HandyDART service.
At the workshops that led to this report report, participants were asked lots of questions. But we were not asked one of the most crucial ones – Should HandyDART be brought in-house? Of course people brought this issue up on their own. The report notes the following comments:
“• In house service needed.
• Bring service in-house rather than contract out.
• The service is too dependent on taxis.
• For-profit model reduces the budget to improve service.” (see page 18)
More on this later, once we have had a chance to read the report more carefully!
You can download the report by clicking here
2016 was a momentous year for the HandyDART Riders’ Alliance, and 2017 is shaping up to be just as busy and important. We have achieved a lot, and with your help can achieve a lot more.
The HRA has been working for years to get regular annual increases in HandyDART service. And now we have been promised increases in 2017, 2018 & 2019. This is much better than the situation since 2009, and sets the stage for further increases in future years.
Before thinking about the year to come, it seems like time to take a look back. In 2008, the Provincial Liberals unveiled a grandiose pre-election transit plan. It had something for everyone, and a price tag of $14 billion dollars. The provincial Liberals were re-elected in 2009. And they quickly reneged on their transit promises and started cutting back on Transit service, including HandyDART.
HandyDART riders and workers wait for the Mayors’ Council vote
Good news! Today the #TransLink Board and the Mayors’ Council both voted unanimously to approve their ‘Phase One Plan’ which includes a 15% HandyDART increase over 3 years. This HandyDART increase is the result of lots of hard work from HandyDART Riders and allies. So take a moment to celebrate!
But the devil is in the details, and tomorrow the #HandyDART Riders Alliance will start working on the details, and we will need your help in the months ahead. In fact, you can help today by writing a letter to the editor of any of the papers covering this issue. Some points to consider: Continue reading
Media Release: HandyDART Riders’ Alliance
Transit Plan Approval Crucial for HandyDART Riders
Mayor’s Council Phase One Plan marks return to regular HandyDART service increases
The HandyDART Riders’ Alliance is urging all the mayors on the TransLink Mayor’s Council to approve their Phase One transit funding plan this month. Members of the group will attend the Mayors Council meeting on November 10th to make their case in person. Continue reading
HandyDART Riders At TransLink Board Meeting
The HandyDART Riders’ Alliance has been working for years to get regular annual increases in HandyDART service. And now your mayor will get a chance to vote YES to about a 13% increase in HandyDART service over three years. This is much better than the situation since 2009, and sets the stage for further increases in future years. Continue reading
HandyDART Riders At TransLink Board Meeting
It has been an eventful few months since our last newsletter, with some significant good news for HandyDART riders. But we just got some concerning news and need your help today!
First the good news:
• In September TransLink reported a HandyDART budget increase of $820,000 to fund 33,000 additional trips to meet increasing demand this year. TransLink reports that 90% of these trips are to be provided by HandyDART bus. This is only a small increase, but it is an important step in the right direction. Continue reading
Tim Louis speaks to media
HandyDART Riders Celebrate Positive Steps at TransLink
Group eager to work with TransLink to improve HandyDART service
The HandyDART Riders’ Alliance says they are very pleased with the significant commitments made by TransLink’s CEO Kevin Desmond at today’s board meeting. Continue reading
[Updated Monday June 20 – Good news & speaking time change]
HandyDART riders made a big impression at the last two TransLink board meetings, and we expect to hear some good news at the next one. Please join us there to show your support for what we hope will be a significant step in the right direction. Continue reading
HandyDART riders made a big impression at the December TransLink board meeting, and we need to do it again! After that meeting the TransLink board chair told the Vancouver Sun “We had an offer to work with these folks more and we want to do that. We will consider (taking HandyDart) in-house.”
For immediate release
HandyDART riders say ditch US corporation for savings and better service:
Group wants service provided by TransLink or non-profit
When: Wednesday December 9, 10:30 am
What: HandyDART riders demonstrate and speak at TransLink Board meeting
Where: 287 Nelson’s Court New Westminster, near Sapperton SkyTrain Station
The HandyDART Riders’ Alliance says that faceless corporations can’t respect the rights of people with disabilities, and are demanding that HandyDART service be run by a public or non-profit organization. At the open TransLink board meeting on Wednesday December 9, the group will propose terminating the contract with the present US-based contractor when it expires in 2017. Continue reading