Answered Questions is a monthly resource for the Spanish language Disability Community that fills an information need. This month’s question is: What research is available on transportation access for people with disabilities in rural areas? This edition of Answered Questions includes items that suggest solutions to rural issues experienced by people with disabilities; discuss transportation as a barrier to successful employment outcomes among rural VR clients; explore the relationship between transportation, density, and employment; address how transportation can be a barrier to education services; and discuss general barriers experienced by people with disabilities living in rural areas in Spain. More about Answered Questions.
The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Disability in Rural Communities (RTC: Rural) (90RT5025) (in English) finds solutions to rural issues experienced by people with disabilities in the areas of health, employment, and community living. Current research and development projects look at the distribution of people with disabilities and availability of services in rural communities; how personal and environmental factors impact community participation, and factors that contribute to active community participation among people with disabilities. Other projects use real-time assessment data to predict community participation, create a validated measure for assessing the accessibility of rural community events, develop recommendations for increasing employment support providers in rural communities, aim to improve the use of online job search and social media strategies to improve rural employment opportunities, and more.
From the NARIC Collection:
The article, Research progress report: Transportation: A barrier to successful employment outcomes among rural VR clients (O18813) (in English), discusses a study that identified strategies for addressing transportation barriers to successful employment outcomes for people with disabilities living in rural areas who use vocational rehabilitation (VR) services. Strategies described in the article include transportation counseling with personal networking strategies, expanding bus routes, supporting client sponsored transportation businesses and voucher models.
The article, The relationship between transportation, density, and the employment of individuals with disabilities (O19783) (in English), from the Rocky Mountain ADA Regional Center (in English) describes a study that compared the employment rates of people with disabilities to land use (urban, suburban, or rural) and the transportation options of the areas where they live. Analysis showed that people with disabilities who live in rural areas are likely to experience greater unemployment because of fewer job opportunities and less access to resources, such as accessible transportation, to mitigate employment barriers associated with rural areas.
The article, Collaborating with cultural and linguistically diverse families of students in rural schools who receive special education services (J64882) (in English), discusses how important it is to promote collaboration between schools and culturally and linguistically diverse (CLD) families of children with disabilities in rural areas. Collaboration is a foundation for the success of all CLD students with disabilities. However, this can be difficult in rural schools due to historical challenges, such as distrust of school, and practical challenges, such as lack of transportation. The development of family support systems, including accessible transportation, can empower CLD families in rural areas.
From Other Collections:
The article, Disability in rural areas, discusses a study from the Spanish Committee of Representatives of People with Disabilities (CERMI – the Spanish acronym), which looked at socioeconomic indicators in rural areas that affect people with disabilities. Researchers compared diverse aspects, such as transportation and accessibility, for people with and without disabilities in rural areas. Researchers found that people with disabilities experience inequality in comparison to their peers without disabilities. The article concludes with a series of recommendations geared towards the reduction of these inequalities in rural areas.
- Toolkit for Operating a Rural Transportation Voucher Program (in English) from the NIDILRR-funded RTC: Rural is a model that describes how to bring together community members and resources to develop and operate a transportation system for people with disabilities living in rural areas. The toolkit includes the elements of operating a transportation voucher program that include how to develop partnerships, contract transportation providers, identify funding, develop polices, and other special considerations.
- Door to door transportation for people with limited mobility: Its start and development (USA), a practical guide from Access Exchange International, is designed for municipalities, transportation professionals, businesses, NGOs, and social services organizations who are creating or amplifying door-to-door transportation services to help people with mobility disabilities in rural areas reach their destinations.
About Answered Questions
Each month, we look through the searches on our blog and through the information requests made by our patrons who speak Spanish and pick a topic that fills the largest need. Each resource mentioned above is associated with this month’s information need. We search the various Spanish language news sources and feeds throughout the month to bring you these articles. With the exception of the NIDILRR Projects, From the NARIC Collection, and Further Investigation, all the linked articles and resources are in Spanish – any that are in English will be clearly marked.