People with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD)* must have access to both public and private transportation to lead full, self-directed lives.
People with IDD lack sufficient access to reliable, accessible, and safe modes of public and private transportation. Every mode of transportation, including air, water, road, rail, and even pedestrian transportation, presents barriers for individuals with IDD. These barriers prevent people with IDD from meaningful participation in everyday activities that promote high quality community living experiences. In the U.S., millions of individuals with disabilities use public transit to maintain their autonomy and participate fully in society. For many, it is their only transit option. However, even where accessible public transportation exists, adults with IDD consider transportation options inadequate.
Federal and state legislation encourages economic self-sufficiency for people with all types of disabilities, which requires transportation. Inadequate transportation inhibits community involvement, including successful employment. Where there is available transportation, there is often little to no training available to support individuals with IDD to make full use of it. For those providing the transportation, there is insufficient training to understand and meet their customers' needs, including cultural competencies. Those living in rural areas often face the greatest challenge of all due to lack of public transportation, limited private transportation options, and long distances between destinations.
Transportation industries, agencies, service providers, and advocacy organizations must ensure that:
Board of Directors, AAIDD
February 12, 2020
Board of Directors, The Arc of the United States
Intellectual Disability (ID) is a lifelong condition where significant limitations in both intellectual functioning and adaptive behavior emerge during the developmental period (before adulthood).
Developmental Disabilities (DD), first defined in 1975 federal legislation now known as “The DD Act,”, are a group of lifelong conditions that emerge during the developmental period and result in some level of functional limitation in learning, language, communication, cognition, behavior, socialization, or mobility. The most common DD conditions are intellectual disability, Down syndrome, autism, cerebral palsy, spina bifida, fetal alcohol syndrome, and fragile X syndrome.
The acronym “IDD” is used to describe a group that includes either people with both ID and another DD or a group that includes people with ID or another DD. The supports that people with IDD need to meet their goals vary in intensity from intermittent to pervasive.
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