Sunday 20 January 2019

Bus plan will hit the disabled and elderly hardest

The leader of the bus driver's union has told an Oireachtas committee that disabled passengers and those that depend on Dublin Bus like the elderly, will be hit worst by losing direct services to the city and having to change bus more often to get to their destination.

Secretary general of the union, Dermot O'Leary told the committee said that in the BusConnects document there is 'not one mention of disabilities between pages 1 and 58'.

He said: 'A significant number of our fellow citizens are not alone reliant on their bus but they take part in familiarisation and training on their bus route number, bus stop placement and colour coding'.

He added: 'What also appears to be lost thus far in the debate is the fact that the people who use Dublin Bus as their primary means of transport and those who may use it for recreation and leisure may not necessarily enjoy having to hop off one bus and onto another just to get to their destination.'

Mr O'Leary said: 'We contend again that there is an overemphasis on the speed test and little, if any, emphasis on the convenience test.'

On the disability issue, NTA CEO, Anne Graham told the Oireachtas Committee 'we need to ensure this network of services also serves people with disabilities'. She said the organisation was seeking advice on how to engage and consult with different disability groups, on the plan.

Fingal Independent