Thursday, October 23, 2014

It Took This Paraplegic Man an Hour to Get an NYC Taxi

Re-post from my friend Scotty Hard:

If you're in a wheelchair, getting around New York City is no easy feat. Fewer than 20% of subway stations have elevators, and only 2% of the 13,000 yellow taxis are accessible. Most disabled New Yorkers are relegated to taking Access-A-Ride, which can be slow and unreliable.

We experience these daily transit challenges through Scotty Hard, a record and music promoter who became paralyzed in a hit-and-run accident in 2008. Like many people who are in a wheelchair, Scott has an active social and professional life, but lack of access to transit makes it difficult to be spontaneous and flexible.

In 2014 several disability advocacy groups won a landmark lawsuit — the settlement of which requires 50% of New York City’s taxi fleet be wheelchair accessible by 2020. This marks a major victory in the 17-year-long “Taxis For All” campaign. Unfortunately, the winner chosen by the Bloomberg administration’s widely publicized “Taxi of the Future” competition last year was one of the only models that was not wheelchair accessible.

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