The Ability Center of Greater Toledo, a non-profit Center for Independent Living (CIL) located in Sylvania, Ohio has recently developed a new coalition denoted “Disability and Aging Passenger Rail Committee,” or DARC for short. As a Center for Independent Living, The Ability Center’s Advocacy Department works towards addressing systemic issues that limit individuals with disabilities’ ability to access vital areas of community life. Public transit is one such vital area that ultimately determines whether or not an individual with a disability will have access to transportation options that allow them to get to work, visit family and friends, go to medical appointments, partake in recreational activities, etc., Not surprisingly then, when the opportunity to get involved with passenger rail advocacy arose this year with the historic funding made possible through President Bidens Infrastructure Law, the Advocacy Department at ACT began plans to create a disability and aging focused coalition.
The disability community in Ohio relies on the accessibility and availability of public transit; however, due to the lack of funding and limitations on distances and locations of current systems, Ohioans with disabilities continue to suffer without full access to Ohio’s communities. Therefore, the goal of DARC is to focus advocacy efforts around increasing passenger rail connections across NW Ohio and ensuring the accessibility of the system once in the design process.
If you are interested in advocating for increased passenger rail connections across NW Ohio to create a fully accessible multimodal public transit system in Ohio, consider joining our coalition! It is open to the public, and we encourage anyone and everyone to be a part of advocating for the revitalization of Ohio’s public transit system! Learn more by emailing: Sfish@abilitycenter.org or by phone at: (419) 885-5733 ex: 244