Calling for More Accessible Taxis in BC

A Coquitlam-based woman who uses a wheelchair was left waiting for an accessible taxi for three hours on Canada Day. After this experience, Merle Smith, is calling for more enforcement of BC\’s transportation laws.

Smith, 70, has been a disability rights advocate since she become quadriplegic when she was 14. She says she was evaluating the Canada Day event for the city to make sure it met accessibility needs like ramps and adequate seating.

Coquitlam Mayor Richard Stewart was at the event and noticed Smith waiting – in the rain – and tried to help her. Stewart said 15% of the taxi fleet in Coquitlam must be accessible and whenever a taxi company has applied to expand its fleet, the city has requested that it include more accessible vehicles, too. By 12:30am (after the initial call at 8:30pm) Merle\’s taxi finally arrived. Stewart even shared his views and the story on social media.

Stewart and Smith are calling on the Passenger Transportation Board to enforce its requirements.

CVS supports an initiative to increase accessibility across the community, including taxi services. We hope that Mayor Stewart and Merle Smith are successful in their plight to make taxi services more accessible across our community.

For more information on this story, please read the original CBC article here.