[personal profile] jazzyjj
Hi folks. I'm back with some more questions regarding ADA paratransit. First off, does anyone happen to know if the powers-that-be keep records of any kind regarding disabilities of paratransit riders in a given locale? This question may seem on the surface to be a bit confidential, but here's why I'm asking. Several weeks ago I was told that my requests for door-to-door assistance are not that common. I took that to mean nobody or hardly anyone in my area needs the drivers to actually get out of their vehicles and assist people to said vehicles, provided passengers aren't standing outside specifically waiting for their ride. A few weeks ago when I booked a round trip, I didn't let the reservationist know that I needed door-to-door assistance until she was about to give me the estimated pick-up time, and she informed me that she was going to have to reschedule my trip. Just for needing door-to-door assistance but not specifying that at the correct time. On a related note, do any of you paratransit riders have the option of scheduling online and creating a profile? This would be so much easier. I'd rather not have to specify my exact needs every single time. I used to not mind doing this, but now I'd really prefer not to repeat myself if at all possible. I'm wondering if this may somehow be confusing the dispatchers? A lot of the paratransit vehicles here nowadays seem to be hybrids, which inandof itself is not a problem with me. However, I have difficulty hearing these hybrids with all the other traffic. This can present quite the dilemma when one only has light perception. Update: The local bus company rolled out an online portal about a year ago. The good news is that it is accessible at least with the 2 screen readers I'm currently using. But the bad news--or perhaps somewhat bad--is that it is not currently possible to book trips online. I read that trips can be cancelled online, but I haven't found a way to do that yet.
[personal profile] jazzyjj
Hello everybody. Well, just when my parents and I and other team members thought that the local paratransit service couldn't get any better, the following scenario happened about a week ago. I have started working out again at the local YMCA, but this time with one of the newer staff members here. He is a very good worker, and a good guy too. So on this particular morning I was picked up by paratransit per my request. The bus pulled up right in front of me, and the driver opened the door and guided me on board. I was his only passenger for that trip, so he dropped me off inside the Y like I had requested. Actually I was informed during my workout that the driver had somehow missed the Y and managed to circle the entire block. Then toward the end of the workout, my tutor told me that we had to go downstairs and meet my ride home. Well, we did so and were promptly informed by one of the front-desk people that my bus had left a few moments prior to our arrival downstairs. So my tutor and I thanked them, and he ended up driving me home. When I got back to my apartment and checked my answering machine, there was a message from the local bus company from a few minutes prior to my arrival back at the pad. The message said that my bus was waiting for me. The time of the message was about 10 minutes before my scheduled pick-up time at the Y. Yet I had my cell phone on me all that time, and it was turned on. Absolutely no phone calls.





Fast-forward to a couple days ago. I phoned into the reservation line to try and schedule a round trip for yesterday, which was Tuesday. But they gave me a time which was way before I would've even gotten out of bed, and told me that no other times were available. So I guess our paratransit service is having issues yet again, and that they're back to their old tricks. I was actually talking with another driver a few weeks ago, who admitted to me that the dispatchers suck at their job. This was what I thought all along, since I've had issues with the service before. This same thing happened just today when I tried to schedule a round trip on paratransit for tomorrow. So I am taking a taxicab to the YMCA, and one back and hopefully things will go smoother.

Oops

Jul. 29th, 2013 09:53 pm
vass: wonder girl facepalming (Facepalm)
[personal profile] vass
Conservative flyers on disabled initiatives contain fake Braille
[hattip to James Nicoll]

"Jim Tokos, a vice-president at the Canadian Council of the Blind, said he found the flyers simply “baffling” — especially since the whole purpose of the pamphlet was to boast about how much the Conservatives were doing to make life easier for disabled people in Canada."
vass: Serpent Guard, caption: "I always get a happy tingly feeling when I see those guys." (Tingly)
[personal profile] vass
So, Centrelink (Australian social services) decided to review my rent assistance (if I don't confirm that my details haven't changed or give them the new details, they stop my rent assistance.) And at the same time the rent assistance part of their website went offline, with no ETA for when it'll be back, so I couldn't confirm that my details hadn't changed on their website.

So my options were print out the form and take it to my landlords to sign (I don't own a printer, and even if I did I'd have to take it to said landlords, and that's social interaction I didn't want) or use their automated phone service. I didn't think it would be that bad. It was.

They asked me to repeat the word 'yes' three times in a row, ON MORE THAN ONE OCCASION because they couldn't understand me. I realise I have mild speech dysfluency issues, I do realise that. [actually, I have a speech pathology appointment today.] But it's not THAT bad. It's never been so bad that a person (or even a machine) literally could not tell whether I was saying yes or no.

Like other people with dysfluencies, I get worse when I'm anxious. Like, if I'm on the phone for nearly an hour and the recorded voice is dictating long strings of numbers in a disjointed rhythm and at different vocal registers and with no pause before or after the dictation, and I need to write those down [I have auditory processing problems too, specifically auditory working memory] and they also want information from me and won't tell me in advance what information I need so I can go get it, and also they can't understand me and I'm talking as clearly as I can, that would be a nightmare affect how clearly I can speak.

Also, sometimes it allowed me to use the keypad to enter numbers, or to use 1 for yes and 2 for no, and sometimes it wouldn't, and it wouldn't tell me when it was appropriate or when it wasn't. And there was a period when it wanted my driver's license and I typed it into the keypad, and it said "I'm sorry, I can't understand you. Can you repeat that?" and it happened TWICE IN A ROW. The KEYPAD. I figured out that it was because I was sobbing quietly. My sobs overrode the keypad numbers. I covered the mouthpiece while I was entering numbers after that.

There was a point where it asked me if I wanted to speak to a real person. I said yes. It couldn't understand me, so it just kept going.

[additional tags: phone]
flora: Picture of several lily pads - a lotus blossom surrounded by three green leaves. (lily pad)
[personal profile] flora
Short notice, but the U.S. government is rewriting the ADA and Section 508 regulations for Information and Communications Technology.  These are the laws that describe how American companies and government websites need to be accessible.   I thought some folks in this community might be interested in commenting on the draft legislation. 

The US Access Board (the agency writing this) is especially looking for ideas on making government websites accessible to people with cognitive disabilities. They also want input on what should and should not be reasonable exceptions to the law.

The ADA revision is very short, but far-reaching.  A new section now covers walk-up kiosk interfaces, not just ATMs.  For example, if you've ever ordered food in a restaurant or cafeteria using a touch-screen, the new ADA law would apply there.

The first public comment period ends today (Monday) June 21 at midnight Eastern time. 

Press release:
http://www.access-board.gov/news/ict-hearing-may.htm

Draft Regulations for comment:
http://www.regulations.gov/search/Regs/home.html#docketDetail?R=ATBCB-2010-0001

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