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E-M:/ New Transit and Disability Rights Resource

For Immediate Release:
Johanna Miller, policy specialist
Michigan Land Use Institute
Phone: 231-882-4723 x 16 • Fax: 231-882-7350
Email: joey@mlui.org • Web site: www.mlui.org
Kevin Wisselink, Transportation Project Coordinator
UCP Michigan
Phone: 517-203-1200 • Fax: 517-203-1203
 • Web site: www.ucpmichigan.org
Eric Richards, Executive Director
The Arc Michigan
Phone: 517-487-5426 • Fax: 517-487-0303
Email: arcmi@voyager.net • Web site: www.arcmi.org
A Resource Guide to Disability Rights, Transit Organizations

Institute, UCP, Arc work to promote innovative, accessible transit

BENZONIA — Transit and disability rights advocates working across Michigan now have access to a new resource list of disability rights and transit organizations working to promote public transit across the country. It is now available at: http://www.mlui.org/projects/transport/publictransit/transitresource.asp

The Michigan Land Use Institute, UCP Michigan, and The Arc Michigan created this best practices and policies resource list as part of their joint project to promote accessible transit in the state of Michigan. A generous grant from the Michigan Developmental Disabilities Council has made this work possible.

"Having reviewed other national transit programs, and the excellent work of other public transportation advocates across the country, clearly there are better ways to deliver transit services," said Johanna Miller, policy specialist at the Michigan Land Use Institute. "The goal of our research was to learn from other successful programs working around the country, and work to apply those best management practices in Michigan."

According to Kevin Wisselink, Transportation Project Coordinator for UCP Michigan, "We look forward to this opportunity to make transportation policy more responsive to all the citizens of Michigan. Without people with disabilities having an active role in shaping our state’s transportation decisions, Michigan’s transportation system will never provide true mobility for all of its citizens."

"The Arc Michigan is thrilled to participate in this collaborative effort," said Eric Richards of The Arc. "Wherever we travel in Michigan, self-advocates and family members express that public transportation is a major problem in their area. We consider it a priority public policy issue that requires immediate attention."

This four-year project aims to change Michigan’s transportation policies. The Institute, UCP Michigan, and The Arc Michigan will evaluate and work to reform state policies, such as Public Act 51, to give greater support to public transportation and provide Michigan’s citizens access to first-rate, accessible transportation services.

Over the next four years, the Institute, together with UCP Michigan and The Arc Michigan, will publish an annual ‘State of Transit in Michigan’ report. The resource guide and the latest information on transit in Michigan are all available on the Institute’s Web site at www.mlui.org. Pending publication, a thorough literature review and the ‘State of Transit in Michigan’ reports will also be available on the Institute’s Web site.

The Institute

The Michigan Land Use Institute is an independent, nonprofit research, educational, and service organization founded in 1995. More than 2,200 households, businesses, and organizations have joined the Institute in support of its mission to establish an approach to economic development that strengthens communities, enhances opportunity, and protects Michigan’s unmatched natural resources.

UCP Michigan

UCP Michigan is a non-profit advocacy organization that works for the productivity, independence and full citizenship of people with cerebral palsy and other disabilities.

The Arc Michigan

The Arc Michigan is a membership organization that exists to empower local chapters of the Arc to assure that citizens with developmental disabilities are valued and that they and their families can participate fully in and contribute to the life of their community.