The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) is observing the part it plays in fostering independence and opportunity for those with disabilities 25 years after the Americans with Disabilities Act was passed in 1990.
Since changes went into effect in 1994, handicap-accessible buses increased from 51 nationwise to 99.8 percent of all buses on the road today, accessible heavy rail/subway trains increased from 83 percent to 100 percent, light-rail and street-car accessibility increased from 41 percent to 88 percent, and commuter and hybrid rail accessibility rose from 32 percent to 87 percent.
"On this 25th anniversary of ADA, let us not forget that our transportation system is a lifeline for millions of Americans, and especially those individuals with disabilities," APTA President Michael Melaniphy said. "Public transportation provides freedom, independence and access for millions of Americans. As a result, Americans with disabilities can travel to work, school, the doctor, the store or go out to dinner."
APTA would like these strides to continue and urges Congress to pass long-term transportation infrastructure funding by July 31, when authorization runs out. The group warns that failure could limit the options of those with disabilities, along with impacting the economy.