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.
Please join us at the joint TransLink Mayors’ Council / TransLink Board meeting 10am Thursday November 10 at the TransLink Boardroom – 4th floor 287 Nelson’s Court New Westminster, BC. Also, please invite your friends and family on Facebook www.facebook.com/events/324571434591794/
The more people who show up, the more pressure the mayors will be under to make this a good plan for HandyDART riders and vote to support it. The formal vote on the Mayors’ Council Phase One Plan will take place later in November.
The need for improved HandyDART service is so severe that the new TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond recently approved an emergency HandyDART budget top-up. HandyDART service hours were frozen in 2009, and as a result trip denials went up over 600% before the US contractor changed procedures to disguise the crisis.
The growing population of seniors means the number of people with disabilities is increasing twice as fast as the rest of the population, and HandyDART service per-capita has been declining. This plan finally recognizes the need for more HandyDART buses on the road every year. We need further increases in the Second Phase of the Mayors’ Council Plan to keep up.
For quality HandyDART service that meets the needs of people with disabilities and older seniors, HandyDART must either be brought in-house as a TransLink subsidiary or turned over to a non-profit agency. This question is being examined with input from the “Custom Transit Service Delivery Review Stakeholder Advisory Committee.” HandyDART Riders’ Alliance members Tim Louis and Patrick Maxcy are on the committee.
For more information please contact:
Tim Louis, HandyDART Riders’ Alliance Co-chair 604 732 7678 or 604 738 0405
Beth McKellar – HandyDART Riders’ Alliance Co-chair 604 444 9289