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Darrell
Darrell Cole
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SPAR seeks accessible transportation for seniors

UPPER NAPPAN - Cumberland County is being asked to help fund a study that will look into providing accessible transportation for rural seniors.

The study, proposed by the Southampton, Parrsboro, Advocate and Region community health board, will be conducted by the business development department at St. Marys University and will assess the feasibility of providing not-for-profit transportation to seniors and persons with disabilities throughout the county.

Gaining access

UPPER NAPPAN - Cumberland County is being asked to help fund a study that will look into providing accessible transportation for rural seniors.

The study, proposed by the Southampton, Parrsboro, Advocate and Region community health board, will be conducted by the business development department at St. Marys University and will assess the feasibility of providing not-for-profit transportation to seniors and persons with disabilities throughout the county.

It has been brought to our attention that theres a need for transportation services in rural areas of the county. Its an ongoing problem, especially among seniors and the physically challenged, SPAR community health board chair Paul Hill said.

Various attempts have been made in the past to set up a rural transportation system but they didnt pan out because they only tried to service a small area.

To date $10,000 of the $12,000 needed for the study has been raised and the steering committee is asking the county to provide the remaining $2,000.

The wheelchair accessible bus would operate in each area of the county one day per week and two days a week in the Amherst area. Preference would be given to those people with medical appointments.

Nothing further will be done until the study is complete so its proponents know exactly how much its going to cost to operate the system.

Community health boards co-ordinator Todd Benson feels accessible transportation is needed because there are many seniors in rural parts of the county who have no way to get to medical appointments in Amherst or Springhill.

Seniors are not comfortable asking their neighbours or friends to take a whole day to drive them to an appointment, Benson said. Many of them would take advantage of this service because it would not place the onus on other people.

dcole@amherstdaily.com

Organizations: Marys University

Geographic location: Cumberland County, Parrsboro, Amherst

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