TfL and Arriva London host Disability awareness discussion
Recently, Arriva London’s Brixton garage was the venue for a new initiative. In partnership with TfL, Arriva London invited a group from Lambeth’s People’s Rights Group to the garage for an open discussion about the challenges for some of our disabled customers when travelling on London’s buses.
The group of five, Brian Stocker, Christina Watkins, Gina Barrett, Sabina Laher and Susan Laffey, together with their facilitators John Hersov and Laura VanBemmel, decided that the best place to discuss the subject was actually on a bus in the garage. So everyone boarded one of the New Routemasters and the dialogue began.
Nik Partou, Arriva London’s Communication Support Manager, kicked things off with an introduction to the New Routemaster, detailing the reasoning behind the three door design.
Then with the help of Arriva London driver Abdullah Bin Masood, the group learned about the process involved when an Oyster card does not have enough funds to pay for a fare. Abdullah explained how the customer would hear a different sound from the ticket machine and an emergency fare slip would be printed out reminding them to top up before their next journey.
The group then raised questions about ramp usage, how the iBus system works and driver professionalism. They then explained some of the issues they have to Nik and his colleagues, and TfL’s Driver Communications Manager and coordinator for this initiative, George Marcar.
The discussions went on for over an hour and the general feeling was that it was a very positive step for everyone. For Arriva London, it emphasised the necessity for the continued training of staff in the needs of customers with disabilities.
For the group, it gave a deeper insight into the protocols that all drivers are trained for, and the challenges drivers can face when assisting customers with disabilities in busy and crowded environments.
Watch the accompanying video and let us know your thoughts on the value of this type of initiative.
Published : Wed 6th Dec. 2017 - Wed 7th Feb. 2018
As part of our commitment to developing our business, we invest heavily in training for all of our staff to offer the great customer experience. We also look at other ways in which we can develop our relationships with the communities we serve, and allow them the opportunity of learning about our processes and to meet some of the team.
Over the past few months we have been working with TfL, conducting Accessibility Awareness forums at our garages.
Doing the right thing, one of our four brand values, is what we have been doing for the last six years by encouraging all of our employees to give to their favourite charities through our Payroll Giving scheme - during this time, they have given more than £1,000,000 pounds to over 160 charities.
Going to school is something we all had to do, but going to school with a red London double-decker bus, and letting four classes from year one come on board to ask questions about the bus, is a privilege we experienced this week at Newbury Park Primary School in North East London.
Last June, Arriva London was delighted to have been re-awarded the TfL contract to run route W6 (Edmonton Green – Southgate Station) for a further five years, starting in January 2018 with brand new buses.
As the festive season approaches, we all look forward to the good-will of giving and receiving, and this was truly illustrated last week when members of our staff made a tour of London, on our open top bus, to meet representatives of some of their charities they give to through their Payroll Giving and celebrate #GivingTuesday.