A Brantford Lift to those in need

Opinion Mar 02, 2016 by Gary Chalk Brant News

Manager of transit for the City of Brantford Elisabeth van der Made has a simple, yet effective mantra for service delivery.

“I want all Brantford Lift riders to be treated like they are my 94-year old mom,” van der Made said. 

“My mother still drives so she can get herself around to where she needs to go. However, I like to treat those who need transportation assistance as if they were my mom. We need to meet their expectations.” 

With more than 20 years experience overseeing public transportation, van der Made welcomed the addition of Brantford Lift to Brantford Transit in 2013. 

“Brantford Lift is a specialized service for Brantford residents who cannot access our conventional transit system,” van der Made said. “Our staff provides door-to-door, pre-booked service anywhere within the City of Brantford.”

The population of Brantford, like communities throughout North America, is changing. Aging brings mobility issues which means public transportation systems must evolve. According to the Grand River Council on Aging, transportation has been identified as a major factor among city residents.  

Brantford Lift drivers and dispatchers operate a fleet of 16 small bus-style vehicles and provide 5,000 trips each month to everywhere from medical appointments, grocery shopping, to and from work and social outings. 

This January there was a 23 per cent increase in the number of riders using Brantford Lift from one year ago. 

“We have 2,000 registered users and it is growing all the time,” van der Made said. 

Jenny Sawicki is a regular, almost daily, user of Brantford Lift.

“I take Brantford Lift to and from work each day,” Sawicki said. “After work they take me to meet up with friends at restaurants or anywhere I need to go.” 

Sawicki knows firsthand the needs of people who need a lift to get around. She works for the City of Brantford as the accessibility co-ordinator.

“The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act became law in 2005,” Sawicki said. “My role is to ensure the city policies and procedures are current in order to maintain compliance.” 

Sawicki works alongside van der Made to enhance the services provided by Brantford Lift. 

Brantford Lift mirrors the hours of service provided by Brantford Transit. Rides are available Monday through Saturday between 6 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. and Sundays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Users of both services pay the same fare and the B-Card – an interactive smart card – works for both services. 

Clients of Brantford Lift appreciate the attention to their needs provided by the drivers. 

“The drivers park the bus and meet us at an identified accessible door and assist getting us onto the bus with our mobility device if we use one and attach our seat belt,” Sawicki said. “When we arrive at our destination, they help get us off the bus and to an accessible entrance.” 

“We can’t ask for anything more. It’s outstanding.” 

Van der Made agrees.

“Our drivers are very special people indeed,” she said. “They go out of their way – in all weather – to ensure our riders are treated well. They go the extra mile.

“People rely on Brantford Lift to get to where they need to go. And we take this responsibility very seriously. As I said, I want all our customers to be transported like they are my 94-year old mom.”

A Brantford Lift to those in need

Specialized transit service has more than 2,000 registered users

Opinion Mar 02, 2016 by Gary Chalk Brant News

Manager of transit for the City of Brantford Elisabeth van der Made has a simple, yet effective mantra for service delivery.

“I want all Brantford Lift riders to be treated like they are my 94-year old mom,” van der Made said. 

“My mother still drives so she can get herself around to where she needs to go. However, I like to treat those who need transportation assistance as if they were my mom. We need to meet their expectations.” 

With more than 20 years experience overseeing public transportation, van der Made welcomed the addition of Brantford Lift to Brantford Transit in 2013. 

“Brantford Lift is a specialized service for Brantford residents who cannot access our conventional transit system,” van der Made said. “Our staff provides door-to-door, pre-booked service anywhere within the City of Brantford.”

The population of Brantford, like communities throughout North America, is changing. Aging brings mobility issues which means public transportation systems must evolve. According to the Grand River Council on Aging, transportation has been identified as a major factor among city residents.  

Brantford Lift drivers and dispatchers operate a fleet of 16 small bus-style vehicles and provide 5,000 trips each month to everywhere from medical appointments, grocery shopping, to and from work and social outings. 

This January there was a 23 per cent increase in the number of riders using Brantford Lift from one year ago. 

“We have 2,000 registered users and it is growing all the time,” van der Made said. 

Jenny Sawicki is a regular, almost daily, user of Brantford Lift.

“I take Brantford Lift to and from work each day,” Sawicki said. “After work they take me to meet up with friends at restaurants or anywhere I need to go.” 

Sawicki knows firsthand the needs of people who need a lift to get around. She works for the City of Brantford as the accessibility co-ordinator.

“The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act became law in 2005,” Sawicki said. “My role is to ensure the city policies and procedures are current in order to maintain compliance.” 

Sawicki works alongside van der Made to enhance the services provided by Brantford Lift. 

Brantford Lift mirrors the hours of service provided by Brantford Transit. Rides are available Monday through Saturday between 6 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. and Sundays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Users of both services pay the same fare and the B-Card – an interactive smart card – works for both services. 

Clients of Brantford Lift appreciate the attention to their needs provided by the drivers. 

“The drivers park the bus and meet us at an identified accessible door and assist getting us onto the bus with our mobility device if we use one and attach our seat belt,” Sawicki said. “When we arrive at our destination, they help get us off the bus and to an accessible entrance.” 

“We can’t ask for anything more. It’s outstanding.” 

Van der Made agrees.

“Our drivers are very special people indeed,” she said. “They go out of their way – in all weather – to ensure our riders are treated well. They go the extra mile.

“People rely on Brantford Lift to get to where they need to go. And we take this responsibility very seriously. As I said, I want all our customers to be transported like they are my 94-year old mom.”

A Brantford Lift to those in need

Specialized transit service has more than 2,000 registered users

Opinion Mar 02, 2016 by Gary Chalk Brant News

Manager of transit for the City of Brantford Elisabeth van der Made has a simple, yet effective mantra for service delivery.

“I want all Brantford Lift riders to be treated like they are my 94-year old mom,” van der Made said. 

“My mother still drives so she can get herself around to where she needs to go. However, I like to treat those who need transportation assistance as if they were my mom. We need to meet their expectations.” 

With more than 20 years experience overseeing public transportation, van der Made welcomed the addition of Brantford Lift to Brantford Transit in 2013. 

“Brantford Lift is a specialized service for Brantford residents who cannot access our conventional transit system,” van der Made said. “Our staff provides door-to-door, pre-booked service anywhere within the City of Brantford.”

The population of Brantford, like communities throughout North America, is changing. Aging brings mobility issues which means public transportation systems must evolve. According to the Grand River Council on Aging, transportation has been identified as a major factor among city residents.  

Brantford Lift drivers and dispatchers operate a fleet of 16 small bus-style vehicles and provide 5,000 trips each month to everywhere from medical appointments, grocery shopping, to and from work and social outings. 

This January there was a 23 per cent increase in the number of riders using Brantford Lift from one year ago. 

“We have 2,000 registered users and it is growing all the time,” van der Made said. 

Jenny Sawicki is a regular, almost daily, user of Brantford Lift.

“I take Brantford Lift to and from work each day,” Sawicki said. “After work they take me to meet up with friends at restaurants or anywhere I need to go.” 

Sawicki knows firsthand the needs of people who need a lift to get around. She works for the City of Brantford as the accessibility co-ordinator.

“The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act became law in 2005,” Sawicki said. “My role is to ensure the city policies and procedures are current in order to maintain compliance.” 

Sawicki works alongside van der Made to enhance the services provided by Brantford Lift. 

Brantford Lift mirrors the hours of service provided by Brantford Transit. Rides are available Monday through Saturday between 6 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. and Sundays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Users of both services pay the same fare and the B-Card – an interactive smart card – works for both services. 

Clients of Brantford Lift appreciate the attention to their needs provided by the drivers. 

“The drivers park the bus and meet us at an identified accessible door and assist getting us onto the bus with our mobility device if we use one and attach our seat belt,” Sawicki said. “When we arrive at our destination, they help get us off the bus and to an accessible entrance.” 

“We can’t ask for anything more. It’s outstanding.” 

Van der Made agrees.

“Our drivers are very special people indeed,” she said. “They go out of their way – in all weather – to ensure our riders are treated well. They go the extra mile.

“People rely on Brantford Lift to get to where they need to go. And we take this responsibility very seriously. As I said, I want all our customers to be transported like they are my 94-year old mom.”