Everything we do outside our home requires transportation: shopping, visits to family or friends, work, religious observance, and school. Historically, parents play the major role in transportation, even as the child becomes a teen and then an adult. How much a parent does varies with each family. Expectations are rising as new generations of families realize the barriers faced by their youth and adult offspring.
Elsewhere, you’ll find Julie Heffernan’s piece on a summit organized by three organizations on transportation in Boston. The Americans with Disabilities Act has facilitated many new initiatives across the country. We are seeing some improvements on access for persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and you can learn about three of them in Julie’s piece. The simple fact is providing better access helps ALL citizens in our Commonwealth.
In 2017, Graydon Bascom at Utah State University published his thesis on “Transportation and Social Participation.” The survey results, as we would expect, showed significant impact on individuals’ social participation due to lack of transportation. He also found a smaller percentage having private transportation than previous studies.
The Arc’s position on Transportation is a clear call to action: “transportation services are often not accessible to individuals with disabilities as policies are not implemented and adequate funding is not provided.”
As in other areas, we have a journey of advocacy ahead of us. Keep your expectations high and help us work at making traveling easier for all of us.
Leo V. Sarkissian