Melbourne trams may violate discrimination laws by failing to provide meaningful public transport access to disabled Victorians.
That is the discovery of the Directorate General of Audit of Victoria. According to a new report, only 38% of state trams were on the lower floors.
In 2018-19, only 15% of all tram services were “meaningfully accessible to restricted passengers.”
Compliant with all tram infrastructure by the end of 2022 was well below the disability access target established 18 years ago.
“If we fail to meet these goals, we are likely to violate relevant laws,” a report submitted to Congress on Thursday said.
“It also means that many people with restricted mobility continue to face practical and physical barriers when trying to access the tram network.”
The report found that this puts the Department of Transport and its Yaratram franchisee at risk of violating disability discrimination laws, both of which are at potential legal complaints.
The temporary exemption issued by the Australian Commission on Human Rights for Yarra Trams expired on 30 September.
A state government spokesman said, “We are constantly working to improve the accessibility of Melbourne’s tram network,” but acknowledged that there was more work to be done.
Victorian Greens’ MPSam Hibbins said the findings are a slap in people with mobility problems.
“Very unfortunate is not only the state government’s failure to meet the statutory schedule, but the fact that they didn’t even try,” he said.
The report found that Melbourne trams were likely to have violated the law because they failed to meet the access goals of people with disabilities.
Source link The report found that Melbourne trams were likely to have violated the law because they failed to meet the access goals of people with disabilities.