Transportation Accessibility

Transportation accessibility is a key area for disability rights and advocacy and impacts disabled people around the globe. For many disabled people, lack of accessible transportation options impedes their freedom of movement, impacting their ability to participate fully in their communities. The project described below is an example of disability-led research on a local scale, with findings and implications that can be of use to the disability community in advocacy, policy, and emerging practices in transportation accessibility solutions.

TRACS Research & Community Engagement Project

TRACS (Transportation Resilience, Accessibility & Climate Sustainability) was created by a partnership between the World Institute on Disability and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) as a research and community engagement project. We’ve completed this two-and-half year project and now are pleased to present our findings and resources.

Our overall goal has been to stimulate connection and communication between the community of seniors & people with disabilities together with the transportation system– the agencies in the region local to the San Francisco bay, served by MTC. We hope for these communities to work together for optimal mobility and enjoyable use by users of the existing services, as well as to improve the accessibility of these services. Our slogan is “Ensuring Access is Everyone’s Responsibility.”

Improving these systems will require action and engagement. There are no “watch-dog” systems for accessibility even those proscribed by law. This is true for all disability rights policies and regulations. People in the community must connect and communicate their needs and expectations to services agencies and the officials responsible for them. There are many ways to do this, which we offer here.

TRACS began our process with investigating and documenting the state of accessibility of our local transportation systems. We created an active ten-member Policy Advisory Group, then moved forward with conducting interviews, focus groups, surveys and workshops, to offer information and invite input from all our stakeholder communities.

Our results are presented in the many documents on this site. We offer reports on our findings, and a multiplicity of resources and tools for use in a wide range of ways. All of these documents are downloadable. We strongly encourage wide sharing of the contents of this site.

Thank you for your interest in “ensuring access!”

Best wishes,

The TRACS team

Project Description

TRACS disability community focus group meeting, diverse group of disabled people sitting in a conference room discussing transit issues.

TRACS is a 2.5-year research, policy analysis and public education initiative to improve collaboration between transportation agencies and people with disabilities in the 9-county San Francisco Bay Area (Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, Sonoma) This project has been funded through the “Sustainable Communities” focus of Caltrans SB1 Grant program.

We thank our project sponsor, the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) as well as our Policy Advisory Group, staff, and all our program participants, for their commitment to accessibility.

Staff:

Marsha Saxton, TRACS Project Director, World Institute on Disability

Drennen Shelton, Shimon Israel, Metropolitan Transportation Commission

Introduction to Transportation Access and the Disability Rights Movement

Demonstrators in Denver protesting the lack of wheelchair lifts on city buses by sleeping on the ground surrounding the bus
Photo by Glen Martin/The Denver Post, via Getty Images

Select the linked files to download accessible Word or PDF documents. To request an alternate format, such as extra large print or a text-only file, email Marsha at marsax@wid.org

The Need for Inclusive Public Transportation (PDF) | The Need for Inclusive Public Transportation (Word document)

The Disability Rights Movement + Transportation (PDF) | The Disability Rights Movement + Transportation (Word document)

The ADA and Transit Accessibility (PDF) | The ADA and Transit Accessibility (Word document)

Findings

TRACS disability community meeting, diverse group of disabled people sitting in a conference room

Summary of Stakeholder Engagement Activities (PDF) | Summary of Stakeholder Engagement Activities (Word document)

Bay Area Transportation Systems for People with Disabilities – Overview and Analysis (PDF) | Bay Area Transportation Systems for People with Disabilities – Overview and Analysis (Word document)

Community Research Overview, Findings, and Recommendations (PDF) | Community Research Overview, Findings, and Recommendations (Word document)

Paratransit Agency Communications Capabilities White Paper (PDF) | Paratransit Agency Communications Capabilities White Paper (Word Doc)

Model Programs for Collaboration with the Disability Community and Transportation Organizations (PDF) | Model Programs for Collaboration with the Disability Community and Transportation Organizations (Word document)

Emergencies & Disasters

Bay Area Disasters & Transportation – Preparation and Considerations (PDF) | Bay Area Disasters & Transportation – Preparation and Considerations (Word doc)

Paratransit Roles and Responsibilities Critical Transportation Tabletop Exercise After Action Report (PDF) | Paratransit Roles and Responsibilities Critical Transportation Tabletop Exercise After Action Report (Word doc)

Presentations

Recording of the Workshop for Disability Community with captions and ASL:

TRACS Feb 10 Workshop for the disability community transcript (PDF) | TRACS Feb 10 Workshop for the disability community transcript (Word doc)

Workshop for Disability Community with Findings (PDF) | Workshop for Disability Community with Findings (PowerPoint file)

Workshop for Transportation Professionals (PDF) | Workshop for Transportation Professionals (PowerPoint file)

Transportation Access Matters! Keynote Presentation Annette Williams (PDF) | Transportation Access Matters! Keynote Presentation Annette Williams (PowerPoint file)

Policy and Training Tools and Resources

Close up of disability access signs, report packets, and postrds about adaptive bike resources.

MTC Citizen Advisory Groups (PDF) | MTC Citizen Advisory Groups (Word doc)

Clipper START Means-Based Fare Discount Program (PDF) | Clipper START Means-Based Fare Discount Program (Word doc)

Paratransit Frequently Asked Questions (PDF) | Paratransit Frequently Asked Questions (Word doc)

Disability-Accessible Recreation Resources Accessible through Bay Area Public Transportation Services (PDF) | Disability-Accessible Recreation Resources Accessible through Bay Area Public Transportation Services (Word doc)

Bay Area Directory of Centers for Independent Livings and Associations (PDF) | Bay Area Directory of Centers for Independent Livings and Associations (Word doc)

What is Ridesharing? (PDF) | What is Ridesharing? (Word Doc)

Shared Mobility for People with Disabilities (PDF) | Shared Mobility for People with Disabilities (Word doc)

Transportation Advocacy Mentoring Initiative Peer Mentoring Implementation Guide (PDF)

Emergencies & Disasters

Emergency Training for Bay Area Paratransit Drivers (PDF) | Emergency Training for Bay Area Paratransit Drivers (PowerPoint file)

Bay Area Office of Emergency Services (OES) Managers Contact List (PDF) | Bay Area Office of Emergency Services (OES) Managers Contact List (Word doc)

California Office of Emergency Services (OES) Library Site Links (PDF) | California Office of Emergency Services (OES) Library Site Links (Word doc)


If you are having technical issues or accessibility issues on this site, email wid@wid.org.

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