The Americans with Disabilities Act (Title II) states, in part, that “no otherwise qualified disabled individual shall, solely by reason of such disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination in programs, services or activities sponsored by a public entity.” The Town of Avon is committed to complying with the requirements of Title II of the ADA in all of its programs, services, benefits and activities.
Avon Transit provides safe and efficient transportation to the communities we serve. We provide door –to-door service for persons with disabilities.
Avon Transit provides training for the safe operation of the vehicles, adaptive equipment, sensitivity and proper treatment of people with disabilities, and the ADA regulations.
“All information about the process, materials necessary to apply for eligibility, and notices and determinations concerning eligibility will be made available in accessible.” Avon Transit makes available to individuals with disabilities information concerning transportation services upon request.
To assist customers who have difficulties with vision and other disabilities, drivers announce all transfer locations, major intersections, destination points, and other intervals along the route sufficient to permit passengers with vision or other disabilities to be oriented to their location. In addition, the driver is required to announce any stop upon request of a passenger with a disability.
Avon Transit provides service to ADA eligible individuals who travel to areas outside of the region in which they live. If these individuals have been certified as "ADA Para transit eligible" by a public Avon Transit, that certification must be honored, and the host transit agency must provide up to 21 days of Para transit service. If individuals have not been certified as eligible by another public Avon Transit but claim that they are ADA Para transit eligible, they are entitled to "presumptive eligibility" and must be provided with 21 days of service. Individuals who are not certified by another transit provider and who claim presumptive eligibility can be requested to provide certain documentation such as their place of residence and the nature of their disability.
Individuals are only considered "visitors" if they reside outside of the transit provider's jurisdiction. The "jurisdiction" means the total area within which the provider is authorized to operate.
Visitors who require more than 21 days of service within the period of time established can be required to apply for local eligibility.
Finally, the level of service provided to visitors is the same as that provided to local ADA Para transit eligible individuals who would be traveling in the same area. This means that there can be no difference in the area within which visitors can travel, the times that they can travel, the fares charged, or any of the other service criteria established in the regulations. Visitors are to be treated exactly like eligible local customers.
No Show Policy and Procedure
Avon Transit understands that customers may sometimes miss scheduled rides or forget to cancel rides they no longer need. Avon Transit also understands that customers may sometimes miss scheduled trips or be unable to cancel trips in a timely manner for reasons that are beyond their control. However repeatedly missing scheduled trips or failing to cancel trips in a timely manner can lead to suspension of service. The following defines Avon Transit’s no show policy:
The regulations permit transit providers to suspend transit service to those persons who establish a "pattern or practice" of missing scheduled rides ("no-show"). Service can be suspended for a "reasonable period of time". Allowances must be made for missed trips that are beyond the control of the individual. Avon Transit makes every effort to work with passengers to understand their situation and avoid administrative action. If a passenger no-shows scheduled reservations 3 times in a 90-day period a transit supervisor will mail a letter indicating the number of no shows for the previous month. It will outline the Avon Transit No Show Policy explaining that failure to notify the transportation office prior to the service date to cancel transportation is considered a No Show. It will also indicate that after written notification if an individual receives 3 no shows in the subsequent 90-day period their transportation may be subject to cancellation and they may be required to pay a fare for the No Show trips. The supervisor will send the letter first class mail with a return receipt.
If there is no change in the passenger’s behavior then they would be subject to suspension from service up to 30 days. Avon Transit administration would determine penalties such as fare collection and/or length of suspension. Notification of this step must be sent by first class and certified mail.
Before service can be suspended for cause under this provision, individuals must be provided with an opportunity to appeal the proposed suspension.
Respirators or Portable Oxygen
These types of devices are allowed on Avon Transit vehicles and will ensure adequate time for individuals with disabilities to board or disembark a vehicle.
Avon Transit will permit service animals to accompany individuals with disabilities in vehicles and facilities.
Ramps and Steps
For safety reasons, drivers are not required to load a passenger in a mobility device if access to their home involves maneuvering the passenger more than one step, unless the home is equipped with a ramp for easy mobility device access. If members of the passenger’s family are available to transfer the passenger from their home to the vehicle, then the step limitation will not apply. Drivers are not required to transfer passengers from their home to the vehicle if the ramp is determined to be unsafe for normal maneuvers.
Priority Seating and Standee
Priority seating is reserved in all transit vehicles for passengers with disabilities who prefer to utilize that seating. In buses, the priority seating is located in the front of the vehicle. Priority seating areas are designated with appropriate signage.
Generally, passengers who have a disability cannot be required to use these priority seating areas if they prefer to sit elsewhere. However, if the priority seating area on the bus is also the securement location used for tying down mobility devices, passengers using mobility devices may not occupy the aisle on the bus and are required to keep their mobility device within that designated securement location.
If priority seating areas are occupied by passengers who do not have a disability and a passenger with a disability who needs priority seating boards the bus the driver is required to ask the passenger occupying the priority seats to move or stand.
Securement Devices Procedure
Lift and Securement Use
Public and private entities providing transportation service must have a securement system for mobility devices. Avon Transit will ask that mobility device users permit their mobility device to be secured but may not deny service on the grounds that a mobility device cannot be secured. Avon Transit will not require a mobility device user to transfer to another seat. Staff must provide assistance upon request or as necessary with lifts, ramps and securement systems. Avon Transit will permit individuals with disabilities who do not use mobility devices to use the vehicle’s lifts or ramp.
Avon Transit will not refuse to permit a passenger who uses a lift to disembark from a vehicle at any designated stop, unless the lift cannot be deployed, the lift will be damaged if it is deployed, or temporary conditions preclude the safe use of the stop by all passengers.
Lift Preventative Maintenance Policy
Daily inspections are completed during the driver’s pre-trip inspection and recorded on a checklist. Vehicles are not put into service without properly operating lift equipment.
Vehicle operators and other personnel must make use of required accessibility-related equipment and features (tie-downs that should be used to secure a mobility device on the vehicle). When a passenger does not want to use the accessibility-related equipment the driver will record that the passenger does not want to use the equipment. The passenger will be asked to sign a form indicating that he or she did not want to use the equipment provided.
ADA Reasonable Modification
Avon Transit may allow the reasonable modification of its policies to accommodate the special needs of persons with disabilities in order to allow them to fully utilize our services as required by 49 CFR Part 37.5(i.3). Whenever possible a request for a reasonable modification or accommodation shall be filed/requested in advance by contacting us:
- Phone: 970-748-4120
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Mail: Avon Transit, ADA Compliance | PO Box 975, Avon CO 81620
Requests for reasonable modifications or accommodations will not be approved if the request would: fundamentally alter the nature of the service, program, or activity; create a direct threat to the health or safety of others; result in an undue financial and administrative burden; or the individual would still be able to fully use the services provided by Avon Transit without the modification.
Persons using Avon Transit for transportation services are generally considered presumptively eligible for ADA transportation services. New passengers requesting access to services who assert a disability or use of a mobility device will be assessed through the eligibility process. Persons must submit an application and provide documentation to help determine use of eligibility. An Avon Transit supervisor may inspect pick up locations if the interview indicates any conditions that may affect safe operations.
Avon Transit provides and maintains adequate records of certification requests, reviews completed forms, notification provided, and any appeals requested and prepared to demonstrate that regulatory requirements were met in the handling of each request for eligibility. Applications are dated upon receipt. Decisions made throughout the review process (the completeness of the application, the need for more information, reasons for determinations, requests for appeals, etc.) are recorded.
Notice of Initial Determination
Applicants must be notified in writing of the initial determination of eligibility. If the determination is that the person is not eligible, the written notification must state the reasons for the finding.
The notification of ineligibility must be specific. Information provided in the application or obtained in the review process must be related to the eligibility criteria (the categories of eligibility) and to the review process, which Avon Transit has designed.
Processing Time/Presumptive Eligibility
Applicants are to be granted presumptive eligibility if ADA determination of eligibility has not been made within 21 calendar days of the submission of a completed application. Service must be provided, and the applicant presumed to be eligible, until and unless the determination is complete, and the person is found to be ineligible.
An application is considered to be complete once the person has provided all of the information required. Subsequent investigations or requests for additional information by Avon Transit would be considered part of the review process and within the 21-day timetable. For example, if an application process requires that individual complete a form which includes the name of a professional who can be contacted for further information, the application would be considered "complete" once the requested information and professional contact were indicated. Follow-ups by the public Avon Transit in getting additional professional verification and information would be part of the 21-day review process.
Administrative Appeal Process
An administrative appeal process is available to any individual who is determined to be ineligible for transportation service, has a ADA related complaint or has been denied a modification. Because the provision of ADA transit service is a civil right, the denial of eligibility or modification is a serious matter.
The appeal process is available not only to individuals who are determined ineligible in all situations, but also to persons who are deemed conditionally eligible. Limiting eligibility is in fact denying eligibility for certain trips.
•Individuals are permitted to request an appeal within 60 days of the initial eligibility or modification decision, hearings will be held within 10 business days of filing unless more time is requested by individual requesting the hearing;
•Individuals have an opportunity to be heard in person and to present additional information and arguments regarding their disability and ability to use the service;
•There will be a "separation of function" between those involved in the initial eligibility determination and those selected to hear appeals;
•Applicants are notified of appeal decisions in writing, or in accessible format if requested, and the notification will state the reasons for the decision if eligibility is still denied;
•If a decision on the appeal is not made within 30 days of the completion of the process, individuals must be considered "presumptively eligible" and must be provided transit service until and unless a decision to deny the appeal is issued. Transit service does not have to be provided, however, during other phases of the appeal.
The Appeal Hearing
(1) an introduction of panel members
(2) In an appeal process the claimant will be provided documentation of the appeal process.
(3) The claimant will be provided documentation of Avon Transit eligibility policy and the nature of the ADA transit eligibility
(4) a summary of the initial determination findings.
(5) The claimant or representative will be provided the opportunity to provide additional information or dispute the initial determination findings.
(6) The hearing officer or panel members will have an opportunity to ask the claimant or her representative questions; and
(7) the restatement of policy concerning a decision on the appeal so that the claimant clearly understands what will happen following the hearing.
If there is a conflict of interest with a claimant or his/her representative or there is a personal relationship with a person on Avon Transit panel and/or decision maker, the conflicted party will be asked to recuse themselves from the process. In any instance that this is not possible, or such request would be considered a hardship for the claimant, the conflict will be documented in the record and acknowledged by all parties.
Finally, because ADA transit eligibility can become the subject of a civil rights complaint and ultimately be reviewed by the courts, it is important that there be documentation of the proceedings. It is not required or necessary to have hearings transcribed, but documentation will be complete enough to capture the essential issues raised and note that the established process was followed.
Observing Privacy Rights
The medical information that may be gathered as part of the ADA eligibility certification process will not be shared with any other party. This would include specific diagnosis provided by professionals and information about the nature of disabilities provided by the applicant. Access to eligibility files is limited to trained personnel and those with access to these files are required to observe HIPPA and to respect the privacy of applicants.
Information regarding a person's functional ability to use fixed route service, derived from the determination process can, however, be shared with other transit providers. Other entities may call to obtain more detailed information about a person's ability to travel if that person has requested service in another area as a visitor.
Re-certification of ADA Eligibility
Avon Transit requires individuals to recertify their ADA transit eligibility annually. While a person's disability may be permanent, other factors, which go into the determination of eligibility, may change. For example; improved technologies and/or operating procedures may be introduced.
Circumstances Under, which Service Can be conditioned
In certain circumstances, it may be possible to mitigate the effects of a person's conduct by requiring that they meet certain conditions (e.g., use the service with an attendant). While the regulation does not allow transit agencies to require attendants’ in other cases, such a condition of use are permitted, if the rider would otherwise be refused service. In other words, transit providers may place conditions on the use of service if they otherwise would have the right to refuse service.
For example, a rider with mental or developmental issues may have a tendency to move around the transit vehicle and accost other passengers. The behavior may be able to be controlled by the presence of an attendant. Because such conduct would be seriously disruptive to the service, the transit provider would have the right to refuse service. They could also, therefore, require that the person travel with an attendant.
If Avon Transit proposes to impose sanctions on someone, it must first notify the individual in writing (using accessible formats where necessary). The notice must specify the basis of the, proposed action (e.g., Mr. Smith scheduled trips for 8 a.m. on May 15, 2 p.m. on June 3, 9 a.m. on June 21, and 9:20 p.m. on July 10, and on each occasion the vehicle appeared at the scheduled time and Mr. Smith was nowhere to be found) and set forth the proposed sanction (e.g., Mr. Smith would not receive service for 15 days).
If the individual disagrees with the finding, Avon Transit would provide the individuals an opportunity to be heard as well as to present written and oral information and arguments through the appeal process. All relevant Avon Transit records and personnel would be made available to the individual, and other persons could testify. It is likely that, in many cases, an important factual issue would be whether a missed trip was the responsibility of the provider or the passenger, and the testimony of other persons and the provider's records or personnel are likely to be relevant in deciding this issue. While the hearing is intended to be informal, the individual could bring a representative (e.g., someone from an advocacy organization, an attorney). The individual may waive the hearing and proceed on the basis of written presentations. If the individual does not respond to the notice within a reasonable time, Avon Transit may make, in effect, a default finding and impose sanctions. If there is a hearing, and the individual needs transit service to attend the hearing, Avon Transit must provide it and provide interpreters if needed.
Avon Transit must notify the individual in writing about the decision, the reasons for it, and the sanctions imposed, if any. Again, this information would be made available in accessible formats.
Finally, it is important to note that service will continue to be provided by Avon Transit throughout the process. The transit provider cannot suspend service while any part of the appeal process is pending.
Circumstances Under Which Service Can Be Refused
Public entities can refuse to provide fixed route or Para transit service to persons with disabilities if they engage in "violent, seriously disruptive, or illegal conduct. "This may include a person who assaults a driver or another passenger, who smokes or drinks on the vehicle in violation of established laws, or who engages in conduct that is so severe that the delivery of service is seriously disrupted.
Conduct which is related to a person's disability and which annoys or offends is not to be considered "seriously disruptive". The interpretive appendix to the regulation uses the example of a person with Tourette's syndrome who may make involuntary profane statements. Such behavior would not be grounds to refuse service. Similarly, service cannot be refused based on an unfounded fear of a particular disability. For example, a person with I-UV disease cannot be refused service because drivers or passengers are afraid of being near and being exposed to the condition. On the other hand, a person who refuses to use a seat belt and has a habit of not staying seated during transport could distract the driver and seriously disrupt service. Refusing service or requiring that the individual ride with an attendant might be appropriate in such a case. Similarly, customers are responsible for the behavior of service animals. Service can be refused or conditioned if a service animal is seriously disruptive.
In determining what constitutes "seriously disruptive" or "violent" behavior, Avon Transit will rely on local ordinances, established laws and standards that define unacceptable public behavior.
Accurate and correct information about various disabilities and medical conditions is vital to ensuring that passengers are not subjected to discrimination. For example, it may be necessary to determine if a passenger's disability causes annoying behavior or if (s)he is prone to violence.
Filing a Complaint
For additional information on Avon Transit’s non-discrimination obligations, or if you believe you have been subjected to discrimination under ADA Title II and would like to file a written complaint with Avon Transit management, download one of the forms below and contact us:
PO Box 975
Avon CO 81620
ADA Rights and Regulations https://www.ada.gov/
Equal Employment Opportunity Policy
The Town of Avon is an equal employment opportunity (EEO) employer. View our EEO Policy Statement for more information.