Accessibility and usability of the urban transport systems and mobility are essential parts if we are to ensure participation and equal opportunities for all in the European Union. Ensuring older people can access to transport services paves the way to full inclusion and social participation, provides them with equal opportunities, while enriching the whole society. Involving the concerned passengers at all stages of the designing, development and assessment phases of transport services and built environment, i.e. taking into account their needs, wishes and constraints, is as a pre-requisite for assuring those services will fully satisfy the users, will be effective and allow the fulfillment of the passengers’ rights to mobility.
AGE Platform Europe and EDF have been working together since late 2010 for boosting action around the Action Plan on Urban Mobility of the European Commission (DG MOVE), issued in 2009, with particular regard to its Action no. 4 – the Passenger Forum.
This Action provides that the Commission will moderate a dialogue with stakeholders, including organisations representing operators, authorities, employees and user groups, in order to identify EU-wide best practices and conditions for strengthening passenger rights in urban public transport.
Building on the experiences shared by our members during these years, on various consultations and contributions, as well as the feedback gathered during the 7FP Mediate project from the End User Platform (established thanks to the voluntary engagement of 10 European and National associations), AGE and EDF wish to translate soon this idea of an inclusive and effective Passenger Forum into action.
Finally, DG MOVE recently launched a stakeholders’ consultation, addressed to AGE and EDF among others. Both associations closely coordinated their replies and AGE replies, build with the contributions of AGE members and experts is available here.
This consultation follows our engagement expressed through the contributions to the Accessibility Act and stresses our commitment “towards an age-friendly European Union by 2020”, in which accessibility and design-for-all are key principles. It was therefore particularly important to make our voice being heard in this driving momentum.
The stakeholder consultation, part of a wider study on the legal and contractual basis on passenger rights on urban public transport, aims at identifying the quality charters and voluntary agreements adopted by transport operators; the quality indicators used to evaluate the operators’ performance; describing the existing compliant procedures and reporting mechanisms, and other forms of promoting passenger rights; evaluating the level of users’ satisfaction.
The Study and the stakeholder consultation cover all the urban public transport modes (bus, metro, tram, light rail, train, and ferry) including taxis.
AGE therefore thanks his members and experts for dedicating part of their time to reply together to this contribution.