For Immediate Release
Brianna Gross, (703) 673-4497, firstname.lastname@example.org
Arlington, VA, December 15, 2014 –
The ENDependence Center of Northern Virginia (ECNV) applauds the Arlington County Board for unanimously voting to approve 60 new certificates for wheelchair-accessible taxicabs. The motion, approved Saturday, will increase the number of accessible taxicabs in Arlington from 37 to 97 out of 787 total cabs.
“What we’re talking about is freedom, accessibility and independence,” said ECNV Board Vice Chair Lee Page. Page testified at the meeting, as did ECNV Advocacy Director Doris Ray.
”Wheelchair-accessible taxicabs help people with disabilities live independently in their communities,” said ECNV Communications Manager Brianna Gross. “People with disabilities need access to transportation options that allow for spontaneous travel. If a person with a disability needs to get to the hospital, scheduling for paratransit services is not an option. Neither is waiting up to three hours for an accessible cab, which is what people in Arlington have reported due to the limited amount of such cabs on the road. In order to gain independence and equality, people with disabilities need equal access to transportation options.”
Of the 60 new certificates, 10 were awarded to Arlington Blue Top Cab, which already has nine wheelchair-accessible cabs in its fleet. The remaining 50 were awarded to All Access Taxi, which will become the first 100 percent wheelchair-accessible taxi company in the region. All Access Taxi is expected to begin operating this spring.
The entire County Board supported increasing wheelchair-accessible taxis. Board Member John Vihstadt (I) raised the first motion, and Vice Chair Mary H. Hynes (D) made the successful proposal to issue 60 certificates.
“ECNV is thrilled the Arlington County Board is increasing the number of wheelchair-accessible cabs,” said ECNV Executive Director Brewster Thackeray. “This decision is a major step forward for people with disabilities in Arlington."
The ENDependence Center of Northern Virginia, Inc. (ECNV) is a community-based resource and advocacy center which is managed by and for people with disabilities. ECNV promotes independent living (IL) philosophy and equal access for all persons with disabilities. We operate from a philosophy of consumer control and peer-to-peer relationships to empower people with all types of disabilities to direct their own lives.