November 20, 2009
Media Release

myRide Travel Training now a permanent program

Travel training program improves overall accessibility of the YRT/Viva system
NEWMARKET- York Regional Council has approved the York Region Transit (YRT) “myRide” Travel Training Pilot Program as a permanent YRT program. 
 
The myRide Travel Training program enables people of all ages with varying disabilities and skill levels, seniors and new immigrants to familiarize themselves with using the conventional transit system and rapid transit services.
 
“Implementing educational programs such as the myRide Travel Training demonstrates York Region’s ongoing commitment to improving accessibility to YRT/Viva,” said York Region Chairman and CEO Bill Fisch.  “Programs like this help to improve the inclusivity of the communities across our Region.”
 
The myRide Travel Training program uses trainers from 14 different partner agencies across the Region to help people who require assistance to make safe, confident and independent journeys on public transit.  YRT provides training manuals, handbooks and other supporting materials to trainers outlining how the Region’s transit system works.  Trainers then provide sessions to familiarize customers on how to use transit, later verifying that the trainee can safely do so by themselves.
 
“The myRide program is a great training tool for residents who are unfamiliar with how to use York Region Transit,” said Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville Mayor Wayne Emmerson, Chair of the Region’s Transportation Services Committee.  “It is important that we offer educational sessions to user groups who need them to help those who want access to our transit service have that transit opportunity.”
 
The Travel Training program is also offered to Mobility Plus registrants to help them learn how to use conventional and rapid transit services.  By participating, registered Mobility Plus users do not lose eligibility for Mobility Plus door-to-door service even if they use conventional transit services for a portion of their trips.
 
YRT launched the one year myRide Travel Training pilot program in May 2008.  A total of 278 individuals with varying skill levels and abilities participated in the myRide program.  Of those participants, 70 per cent are now travelling on the YRT/Viva system with greater independence.
 
The cost to maintain the program is $40,000 annually and will improve overall accessibility to the YRT/Viva system.
 
To participate in the myRide program or for agencies interested in partnering with YRT in the myRide program, please contact Piragal Thiru, Planner Accessible Service at 905 762-1282 ext. 5826.
 
For more information about YRT/Viva services, please visit the YRT/Viva website at www.yrt.ca or call the Customer Service Centre at 1-866-MOVE-YRT (668-3978).
 
For more information on The Regional Municipality of York, please visit www.york.ca
 
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Media Contact: Michelle Dudzik, Corporate Communications, York Region 
                      Phone: 905 830-4444 Ext. 1209  /  Cell: 905 716-0994
                      Email: michelle.dudzik@york.ca

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