Problems are inevitable; they seem so natural or bound to happen. One of such is the lack of special public transport for disabled people in their own countries.With what I have seen so far in my country or better still, what I’ve discovered is that, the majority of disabled people hardly leave their homes because of transport difficulties they faced in the society. This is one of their major frustrations.
Why disabled people have to face transport problem for so long in their countries is because they are not fully considered in the community. Those who are supposed to meet their transport needs are not ready to shoulder the responsibility. As a result of this, transportation choice for disabled people is almost zero or extremely limited in their own countries.
3 Major Reasons why Disabled People have to face Transport problem in their Community
- Disabled people are not included in policy making in their countries hence, they are not fully considered.
In most countries disabled people are not part of the policy makers hence; it may be difficult if not impossible for people who do not have better understanding or experience of what a disabled man is passing through to make a better policy that will positively affect the lives of disabled people. He who wears the shoe knows where the shoe pitches him or her, says an adage. Since, people with disability are not fully involved in policy making hence the transport problem for disabled will remain unsolved.
“What an old man seats down to see a young boy cannot stand up to see it even, if he climbs the highest tree in the village”, says an African adage. Since, disabled are not part of the policy making in their different countries it will be difficult for the policy makers to tackle the transport problem facing the handicapped properly even, if the policy makers are made the presidents or prime ministers of their countries yet, they will still not see far more than what a disabled man can see to tackle his own transport problems. Therefore, handicapped should be allowed to take part in policy making. Why? It is because he who wears the shoe knows better where the shoe pitches him or her. It is advisable and even better to allow those that have better experience of what it means to be a handicapped to suggest on how their transport problems should be tackled by allowing them to take part in policy making. Hence, the saying “experience is the best teacher”.
- In most countries, governments and transport providers do not consider transport needs for disabled people.
In addition, in some countries governments at different levels and transport providers do not consider it necessary to provide special transport for disabled people, due to this reason; transportation problem becomes the major problem for disabled people in their own countries. For instance, it is uncommon to see any public vehicle or bus run by governments or private individual that is accessible by wheelchair in my country. It is also difficult to see any bus stop designed for handicapped or that can be accessible by wheelchair. I also think the same thing happen in other countries especially in African countries. Why? It is because governments and transport providers in different countries do not think carefully about the transport needs for the handicapped. What a pity!
In my country I’ve seen government at different levels e.g. Federal, state and local government establishing a transport company for the public, but I hardly see a transport company that is established for disabled, either by the governments or private individual. This is a great inequality. One of the benefits of public transport is that, it supports social justice; this means that public transport should be made available and affordable for all kind of people in the society, rich, poor or handicapped. In view of this, it is wrong for both the governments and transport providers not to consider the transport needs for disabled people in their societies. Hence, the saying, 2 wrong things can never make a right. Governments and individual transport provider are expected to consider the transport needs for the disabled by providing public transport that is efficient, affordable and accessible.
It is important to note that if the best transport policy is made in order to tackle the transport challenges of disabled people, poor administration or implementation of such policy will play a setback in the wheel of progress, therefore, putting the hope for, better transport service for, disabled people in a great mirage. In short, the transport problem for disabled cannot be solved if the implementation or administration is poor.
Good administration and proper implementation are required to tackle or solve the transport problem for disabled people.