TORONTO, Sept. 29, 2011 /CNW/ - The cities of Hamilton, Greater Sudbury
and Thunder Bay and the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) have
settled three human rights cases at the Human Rights Tribunal of
Ontario. The OHRC filed the complaints in 2009 to increase
accessibility for riders with vision disabilities by ensuring the
calling out of all transit stops.
Each of the three transit providers took action and each now has an
automated call out system that incorporates backup procedures in the
event of a system malfunction. The transit providers monitor their
systems regularly to make sure they are working properly, and provide
training for all drivers. As part of the cities' commitment to
accessible service, they have also helped transit riders learn about
the stop announcement systems, and provided ways for riders to raise
any concerns or get more information.
"Accessible transit is good for everyone, but for people who are blind
or partially sighted, it's essential," said Barbara Hall, Chief
Commissioner. "I am very pleased that transit riders in the Hamilton,
Sudbury and Thunder Bay areas, including people with disabilities,
newcomers, and others, can count on hearing their stops called out,
just like other transit users across the province."
The settlement respects the rights of persons with vision disabilities
to equal treatment in services under the Ontario Human Rights Code, and means that the municipalities have also met the requirement under
the AODA Integrated Accessibility Regulation that all transit route
stops must be called out audibly as of July 1st, 2011.
"The City of Greater Sudbury is very pleased with the outcome of this
issue, considering the City's long-time commitment to a fully
accessible transit fleet" said Roger Sauve, Director of Transit
Services. "In 2008, the City of Greater Sudbury committed to equipping
all Transit buses with an automated next stop announcement system -
both audible and visual. We were proud to have accomplished this in
2009. The City of Greater Sudbury is proud to have a 100% accessible
transit system available to riders, and remains committed to ensuring
that full ridership services are provided to all citizens."
"The City of Thunder Bay's long standing commitment to serving the needs
of the disabled community is demonstrated by being the first mid-sized
transit system to have a 100% fully accessible low floor fleet. Our
investment in an automated audio/visual call stop system, which was
installed on all buses in September 2009 and our extensive
accessibility training for all staff, reinforce Thunder Bay Transit's
efforts of working towards providing public transit that is accessible
to everyone." - Brad Loroff, Manager, Transit Division.
"The City of Hamilton committed back in March 2008 to acquiring a fully
automated stop announcement system to complement its fully accessible
fleet, in order to better serve its visually and audibly impaired
transit users, and worked determinedly from that time to see the
project to fruition" said Don Hull, Director of Transit.
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SOURCE Ontario Human Rights Commission
For further information:
For the Ontario Human Rights Commission
Rosemary Bennett, Sr. Communications Officer
For Hamilton Transit
Don Hull - (905) 546-2424 ext. 1860 - firstname.lastname@example.org
For Greater Sudbury Transit
Roger Sauve - (705) 674-4455 ext. 3014 or ext. 3012 - email@example.com
For Thunder Bay Transit
Brad Loroff - (807) 684-2187 - firstname.lastname@example.org