REHACARE.com asked the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) what exactly Wheel-Trans is and how all transit users benefit from accessibility.
How did the idea of Wheel-Trans Toronto come about?
TTC: With the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, or AODA, since 2005 all public transit agencies are required to also provide an accessible transit option.
But the actual story of transit for individuals which may have mobility, agility, hearing, mental, seeing, or speaking functional limitations begins in September 1926. In that year 3 coaches were used to transport approximately 30 children who used a wheelchair from their homes all over the city to school. Through the next several years, modified buses entered wheelchair service and people, who had previously been transported by ambulances, were making trips to and from work, doctor’s appointments, etc. The history of accessible transit began a long time ago but the goal to make the entire system accessible continues.
Our TTC Wheel-Trans in particular provides a safe and reliable transit option for persons with disabilities. You can use our Wheel-Trans service if your disability prevents you from using TTC’s conventional transit for all or part of your trip.
Who can use Wheel-Trans and how?
TTC: If your disability prevents you from using conventional transit some or all of the time, then you may wish to apply for our service. Eligibility is not based on disability type, income or age. It is based solely on the presence of a disability that impacts a person’s ability to travel on conventional transit.
In accordance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA), you can either use Wheel-Trans to get a door-to-door-service, or only in parts because you may be able to use conventional transit for all or part of your trip but may also qualify for door-to-door service under specific circumstances (e.g., weather, travel to a non-accessible location). But of course you are also eligible for our service if you have a temporary disability that prevents you from using conventional TTC service for a defined period of time (e.g., following an injury or surgery).
But also visitors of Toronto with a disability can apply for temporary service for up to 3 weeks. If they are registered for a specialized transit service in their city we will provide them with our service.
You can book occasional trips up to seven days in advance of travel or regular trips, which are recurring at the same day of a week, time and to the same destination for a minimum of two weeks. But you can also book trips the same day that you want to travel. You should only book them at least four hours prior to the desired time and you should always schedule your arrival 30 minutes prior to your required arrival time to allow for traffic or other unforeseen circumstances.