Getting around town

Andrew
Andrew Wagstaff
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Accessible community transportation moving ahead in Amherst

Persons with disabilities now have an easier way to get around town, and an effort is afoot to make that service more sustainable.

Accessible Community Transportation (ACT) is a non-profit organization formed to ensure that people with disabilities have access to affordable transportation.

Getting around town

Persons with disabilities now have an easier way to get around town, and an effort is afoot to make that service more sustainable.

Accessible Community Transportation (ACT) is a non-profit organization formed to ensure that people with disabilities have access to affordable transportation. One of the main objectives is to assist private operators, such as local taxi companies, in providing the service.

"When I decided to get into this business I saw just how big of a need there was here, just for people to maintain a basic standard of life," said Carl Davidson, who owns and operates Your Cab. Davidson is one of any local volunteers trying to get the service up and running.

Once up and running, ACT is hoped to have a pool of money available through sources such as membership fees, grants and fund-raising. Private operators providing the service will charge fare rates based on zones, and will be eligible for financial assistance from the new organization.

As it stands, Your Cab is the only tax company in town with a wheelchair-accessible vehicle, and it is used often to transport wheelchair-bound passengers. But it is an expensive venture, costing him about $21 per return fare due to expenses such as fuel, insurance and wages, while he only recovers $9 in fare.

"If my business ever slowed down drastically and I had to stop the service and park the van, it would be almost like taking food from a child," he said. "So we're really trying hard to get it here to stay."

TheACT committee, which includes people from all walks of life, has completed a business plan and is now in the process of registering as a non-profit organization.



awagstaff@amherstdaily.com

Organizations: Accessible Community Transportation, TheACT committee

Geographic location: Amherst

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Recent comments

  • Tanya
    January 18, 2010 - 11:21

    I think that this is a wonderful service. Hopefully people in the area will support it and the service will remain in place for this who need it.