Letters to the Editor

Mega-projects trump regular services

The provincial government continues to announce mega-project after mega-project, most recently the $3-billion Massey Tunnel replacement scheme.

In contrast, our transit system is starved for basic operating funds. That is why there were over 42,000 HandyDart trip denials in 2013, an eight-fold increase in four years.

TransLink announced a measly $1 million for the taxi industry to stem the flood of denied HandyDart rides. They sell this proposal by assuring the public that taxi drivers will receive a five-hour unpaid training session to transport disabled people and seniors.

HandyDart drivers must pass a 13-day course to become drivers. Every year each driver must complete a minimum of 11.5 hours of in class and in service refresher training.

HandyDart drivers are held accountable for professional service through assessments, post-incident training and spot checks.

Taxi drivers must do many trips quickly in order to earn enough to feed their families.

Economics will always make it difficult for taxi drivers to take the time to care for those in need. No training can overcome that reality.

Safe public transportation for people of all level of abilities is a wise investment.

Sadly, Christy Clark does not recognize that truth.

 

Mark Beeching

Langley

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