Friday, February 5, 2016

MATAplus Advisory Committee Update

MATA looking to resolve inaccessibility issues

By Allison Donald

MATA operator beside a bus
During the monthly meeting which was attended by Russell Jones, (chair) Bobbie Fields (secretary), Christina Clift (member), William Bass (member), Rexcey Bowers (member), Allison Donald (member), and Glenda Wade (MATA representative) issues regarding the lack of effective and accessible communication were addressed.  The STAC committee was also informed on the status of Sandi Stanko and whether or not she was still employed by MATA.

Some riders have lodged complaints and tried voicing their concerns about the voicemail system set up, but MATAplus has failed to respond in a timely manner either with a written response or via phone.  Allison Burton the Director of Marketing is in the process of training some to cover the complaint line.  In accordance with that Glenda Wade and William Hussey (IT at MATA) will look into why the telephone system takes the caller and sometimes drops the call.  Riders have also experienced being inadvertently cancelled which she also said she would look into.

The problems of effective communication and the lack of accessible informational material has resulted in Christina Clift filing a complaint against MATAplus with Disability Rights Tennessee.  Christina Clift and Bobbie Fields are going meet with Ms. Wade Monday or Tuesday via phone to try and construct a plan that may lead to a resolution of some of the issues that continue to plague riders.

Ms. Wade also informed the members of the STAC committee that she was unsure of the status of Sandi Stanko.  MATAplus is also in the process of hiring nineteen new divers and purchasing 15 new vehicles.  Bobbie Fields and Ms. Wade are planning out the schedule so shadowing can begin.

The next STAC committee meeting will be held on March 3rd at 3:00 pm at the PVA on 1030 Jefferson. If you would like more information on the STAC committee and how to become a member you can contact Bobbie Fields or Christina Clift at 901-726-6404.