Tuesday, 7 May 2013

I am in a growling sort of

mood again. The nice person at the Equal Opportunity Commission phoned me after six last night. Yes, she was still working. I felt guilty that she was still there trying to sort out the transport mess.
It is a bigger mess than ever.
Remember? The trains are not running. I need my tricycle to get to the bus. There is nowhere safe to leave my tricycle and, even if I did, at the other end I am without transport. Walking considerable distances in the city to my most frequent destinations (the hospitals where I am often called on to assist people with communication difficulties) and crossing several very busy major roads in the process is not possible. The buses in the city do not go between those places - or even to those places. 
Those responsible for running the trains were supposed to provide alternate transport for anyone who could not use the substitute bus. Ah yes, you remember that too?
For some reason they decided that the only alternative they would provide was what we call an "access" cab. They made the assumption that, if you could not use the bus, then you must need an access cab. I don't. I know several people, unable to use a bus, who are quite capable of using an ordinary cab. The transport people will not provide these. They insist it must be an access cab. 
The problem is that our city does not have nearly enough of these. At certain times of the day the system is overloaded taking children to and from school and regular workers to work. Those things, quite rightly, have to take priority. I have no argument with that. 
I do have an argument with the insistence that these are what must be used by everyone else requiring transport at this time. The cabs are not available when I, or several other people, need them. Their response was, "Apply for the taxi transport subsidy scheme. You will be eligible for the duration of the line closure."
I have now been advised (as I expected) that I am not eligible for the taxi transport subsidy scheme even for just the few months I really need it .... because the transport people "have an alternative in place". The nice person in the Equal Opportunity Commission agreed we are probably not going to get anywhere. The transport people will say what they have provided is "reasonable". They refuse to respond to questions about arrangements for a return journey and the parameters for use as well.
I expected all of this. The system is clearly designed so that, although technically available, it cannot really be accessed. It would be expensive if it was. 
I am really looking forward to the re-opening of the railway line and the resumption of my independence. In the meantime I am growling.


Helen Devries said...

I would be too. A denial of rights while pretending to offer them.

Anonymous said...

Yes, of course the system was designed to ensure people could not use it. Since when did a cab have to be ordered a day in advance? I know they like some notice if possible but that is ridiculous! Chris

Anonymous said...

Growl away! Maybe somebody who counts may listen, though I doubt it.

catdownunder said...

Well I have written a polite but very straightforward letter (by e-mail) to the Minister - receipt of which has now been acknowledged. I doubt anything will come of it - but at least they have been informed.