Category Archives: Durham Region

Durham Region Transit meets with the Accessibility Advisory Committees

Durham Region Transit has booked a meeting to discuss transit with members of the AACs from Durham municipalities and the Council on Aging Committee as requested for Wednesday June 13 from 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. at Regional Headquarters in the Lower Level Conference Room.

From the City of Oshawa, the following Councilors sit on the Durham Region Transit Commission:

  • Commissioner Aker
  • Commissioner Carter
  • Commissioner Henry
  • Commissioner McQuaid-England
  • Commissioner John Neal
  • Commissioner Pidwerbecki
  • Commissioner Sanders

(You can simply email all Councilors by: council@oshawa.ca

Every Municipality in Durham, as well other municipalities have an Accessibility Advisory Committee (AAC), made up of volunteer local residents who advises and assists their city/town’s agencies, boards, commissions, committees and City Council in developing and facilitating strategies and actions toward developing and maintaining a barrier free community with a goal to improving the quality of life for those with disabilities.

Each AAC has a work plan of activities they perform. Here is a link to the Oshawa Accessibility Advisory Committee (OAAC) Work Plan 2018-2019.

For more information about the OAAC’s mandane, work plan, meetings, making a delegation request and submitting a correspondence click here.

Although this discussion involves solely the AACs of Durham Region, I wanted to submit a Correspondence (letter) to the next OAAC meeting about accessibility and customer service while commuting with DRT. I asked the Downtown Oshawa Facebook group about there accessibility issues with DRT. With ‘The Wisdom of the Crowd’ – I hope my letter to the OAAC contributes to some of the ideas they will discuss.

Here is a list of key points I will address in my letter to the OAAC:

  • They need to start earlier and run till at least 3am for people who work or attend bars downtown. At least select routes. Especially on Sundays. Perhaps a Special Community Bus.
  • Drivers should request that parents with children over 3 to fold their child’s stroller, so commuters with walkers and canes don’t have to stumble to the back and risk falling.
  • At each DRT bus shelter, there should be a system map and schedule for each route to help commuters navigate.
  • Driver’s need more training in customer service, such as: being more vigilant about observing customers with mobility issues hurrying to the bus, instead of closing the door on them because the driver is frantic about keeping on schedule, waiting until people are seated before slamming the gas pedal, letting on persons with scooters and walkers first, and asking passengers respectively to move from priority seating to allow seat for person with disability.

Final Thought

I believe the Durham Region Transit drivers do there best to deliver good service. Its not fair to scapegoat the drivers for sometime poor service. Its a high demanding job and emotionally draining depending on the drivers schedule and route.  I believe that passengers need to understand DRT Drivers are human beings, nobody is perfect, and it be radical to exercise some decorum and being a good samaritan, so everyone enjoys public transit.