Rural transportation challenges hurt everyone. No transportation for appointments, activities of daily living or employment opportunities affects us all with the increases to unemployment, lack of healthcare access and mental illness attributed to social withdrawal all comes with a cost to individuals, families, tax payers and the local economy.
As a Registered Practical Nurse (RPN) I’ve seen the negative influences and struggles for our most vulnerable sector with few choices for affordable and available transportation first hand. It is becoming increasingly difficult for elderly, physically limited or mentally ill people to maintain their usual daily routines especially when their ability to drive has been impacted or local family supports are missing.
More choices for transportation solutions need to be available in rural Ontario and current providers are over capacity, unable to provide specialized services or lack consistency and only serve small populations.
Transportation is the key to healthy communities with access for everyone.