The Baltimore Sun article, “MTA Mobility service, down 500 drivers since 2019, reports worst on-time rate in 5 years” recently revealed the severe hardship faced by individuals with disabilities who rely on the Maryland Transit Authority’s (MTA) Mobility paratransit services.
Lauren Young, DRM’s Litigation Director, explained that, in addition to being dangerous, these lapses in service violate the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which guarantees people with disabilities equal access to public transportation. Patients miss dialysis appointments, employees miss work, and vulnerable individuals are left waiting for hours in outdoors amidst a global pandemic.
DRM has held MTA to account for over the past five years, working closely with the advocacy group Consumers for Accessible Ride Services (CARS) and most recently with other community partners to prevent proposed budget cuts that would have eliminated 25% of existing bus routes.
“We’ve been here before,” Lauren Young said, “These are people’s lives and their civil rights.”
Young is calling for emergency intervention, demanding the state offer emergency back-up services, increase funding and prioritize hiring more MTA drivers to operate this essential service.
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