Transportation Policy

Rally for elevator maintenance outside of MTA HQ in Manhattan.

Transportation is the second biggest barrier to employment for people with disabilities. CIDNY is involved in transportation advocacy and organizing, will current campaigns on improving subway elevator access, curb cuts, and Access-A-Ride.

Our 2024 Transportation Legislative Agenda items include the following:

CIDNY supports the amendment of the Public Authorities Law to add language that allows eligibility based on licensed healthcare providers' letters. (A2723, O’Donnell/S7021, Kennedy): CIDNY seeks passing of the bill with some caveats. CIDNY would like additional language that can further ensure that people with disabilities’ assessment process is consistent with the intent of the American with Disabilities Act. Beyond having the provider’s letter prevail, when more information is required, Access-A-Ride should contact the healthcare provider for clarification, stating that an individual’s disability is progressive or permanent and no recertification is required. This should include individuals with invisible or non-physical disabilities. In-person assessments have proven to be costly. We see no need for assessment centers. Should they think there is still a need to continue having assessment centers, the MTA should present to the legislators in public form a report of the process, costs and research that supports their reasoning.

CIDNY supports requiring counties to expand paratransit beyond ADA 7 minimums (A4165 Steck/S4739 Kennedy): The limited availability of accessible transportation services is a major barrier faced by people with disabilities, often leading to unemployment, inability to access medical care, lack of access to voting sites, and isolation from friends, family, and full community participation. The failure to provide paratransit service throughout the State is a major contributor to this pervasive problem. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires that counties provide accessible paratransit service to disabled people who are unable to take the fixed-route bus. At minimum, paratransit service must be provided to disabled people within ¾ of a mile of the closest bus stop. This was always meant to be the floor, not the ceiling. As fixed-route bus lines are eliminated, people are being cut off from paratransit service. This leaves disabled people stranded, without services, or the ability to work, receive services, attend houses of worship, or medical appointments. The State could address this by increasing the minimum service provided to people who rely on paratransit.

CIDNY supports the requirement of the registration of bicycles with electric assistance used for commercial purposes; provides liability of employers for certain violations. (A7833 Simone/S7587 Hoylman-Sigal): CIDNY seeks the passing of this bill. We have heard too many times of people from the disabled community getting hurt by bicycles and/or e-bikes and having no way to file a complaint or press charges. This legislation would require the registration and licensure of bicycles with electric assist that are used for commercial purposes and directs the costs of violations relating to riding such bicycle on a sidewalk to the employer of commercial riders.

Tracking Access-a-Ride Problems

CIDNY is working with Brooklyn Center for Independence of the Disabled (BCID), Mobilization for Justice (previously MFY Legal Services), and New York Lawyers in the Public Interest (NYLPI) on a special project tracking Access-a-Ride (AAR) problems and providing training on riders’ rights. CIDNY’s community organizers have been tracking problems with AAR. At the beginning, CIDNY’s strategy was to reach out to CIDNY’s participants who have used or are users of AAR in the past to conduct a survey and have a focus group. Through this effort, we have gathered stories that have been used at MTA Board meetings. Now, we are beginning to do outreach in the community to gather more stories by conducting training on AAR users’ rights so they can advocate for themselves, understand how to apply, and to help them continue to share their stories.

To get involved, contact Tashia Lerebours, at tlerebours@cidny.org or 646-368-8031.