Coming to a Town Near You: the RTA’s Mobility Outreach Team
August 2, 2017
As we wrap-up our celebration of the 27th anniversary of the passage of the ADA, it’s important to note that our work doesn’t just stop here. The RTA has great resources that increase access to transit for riders with disabilities, and we want riders to know about them. Allow us to introduce you to the RTA’s new county-based Mobility Outreach team.
This specialized group travels the six county region to provide presentations and attend outreach events at agencies that serve people with disabilities, older adults and students. The presentations and outreach provide information on transit-related resources and how to plan and safely ride Metra, Pace and CTA buses and trains. Mobility Outreach Coordinators also provide information on the RTA Ride Free & Reduced Fare programs, the Ventra® payment system, ADA Paratransit service provided by Pace, and RTA’s Travel Training program.
Let’s meet some of the Mobility Outreach Coordinators.
Kristen Salkas is the Mobility Outreach Coordinator for Will County and Southern Cook County. She has been at the RTA for six years and this is her first job in the transportation field. Before joining the RTA, she worked as a researcher for people with intellectual disabilities. Kristen is currently completing her doctoral dissertation project on a topic close to her heart and her work: transportation for people with disabilities.
“I love working in Mobility Outreach because I get to see the faces of our customers every day. When someone is looking for transportation services, I can work with them face-to-face and help them learn about all their transit options. It is great to hear when people are satisfied with the programs and services that the RTA has offered them, and it makes me feel like my job is useful and important. I love working within different communities of people and doing the groundwork to keep those communities moving.”
“I really enjoy the opportunity to meet amazing people within the community and make sure they know about all their travel options in the area. I enjoy working within a great team of diverse, skilled professionals here at the RTA. We have a true passion for ensuring riders are informed and educated about our services and programs. Each day, I start with the personal goal to help, motivate and inspire others.”
“One of my favorite parts about my day is going to organizations and presenting information about RTA’s programs that many people did not know about. I enjoy meeting customers and helping others, whether it is 1 person or 100. It is such a rewarding feeling to know you may have increased a person’s independence by increasing their travel options. I truly love my job!”
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