with disabilities is poor all over the country. That is
There has to be a way to improve such services. Blaming the
driver isn't going to help. The real issues are higher up.
Whether it stems poor management or lack of organization, it's
not fair what people with disabilities go through to get from
place to place.
Do people understand how serious this problem is? Let's look
at PARTA as an example. This is what they've put me through over
the past two months.
On January 9th, the driver took me to the wrong doorway. I was
unable to find my way around. This led to two students grabbing
my arms and pulling me around. I would not have been put in
that situation if the driver took me where I'm supposed to
On February 6th, the driver again took me to the wrong door. I
walked around in circles until I finally had to call out for
someone to help me.
Also on February 6th, I was picked up from Kent State at 2:15.
I live less than 10 minutes away from campus. I was on the bus
for over an hour. I finally got home at 3:20. I barely made it
home before my 10 year-old-son.
On February 8th, my pick-up time was 2:15 to 2:45. PARTA did not
arrive until 3:20. I was frantic to find someone to meet my son
On February 15, the same situation happened. Once again, PARTA
picked me up at 3:20.
On February 22nd, the driver dropped me off at the wrong door. I
wandered around the unfamiliar area until I somehow found my way
to the elevator.
On March 2nd, PARTA picked me up from home 15 minutes late.
This made me late for my volunteer job at Hattie Larlham
Foundation. I am a punctual person. I do not appreciate that
PARTA made me late.
Also on March 2nd, PARTA picked me up for my return trip at 2:20.
I did not arrive home until 4:05. I had no idea where I was or
what was taking so long.
There are the facts, but what can we do about it? I tried
complaining, but PARTA never replied. It doesn't look like
they've done anything to improve, either.
I'm totally fed up, yet the sad truth is that PARTA is the only
option for paratransit in Portage County. It's PARTA or nothing
at all. I don't like it, but what choice do I have?