Bus user claims rights breached

A disabled Dunedin woman has complained to the Human Rights Commission that the Otago Regional Council has discriminated against her.

Desiree Anton, a bus user on the Wakari and Helensburgh service, claims the way the council went about introducing new bus routes contravenes the Human Rights Act.

Ms Anton says her lack of mobility has been made worse by the loss of bus stops near her home

Ms Anton believes council consultation was insufficient and breaches the Human Rights Act.

She also claims the ORC has "copped out" by attempting to justify the bus changes with the Total Mobility Service where users with mobility issues receive discounted transport.

"They are expecting all people with disabilities to have to utilise taxis at increased cost; sometimes up to three times the cost of the bus fare for the same area.

"This is still a disgrace and still discrimination and it is disgraceful to expect agencies like WINZ and the like to fork out funding for the council's decision to discriminate."

Otago Regional Council support services manager Gerard Collings says he does not accept Ms Anton’s claim but it would be inappropriate to comment further while the matter was with the commission.




She is so right. The ORC stopped one bus route completely and expected the older people to first join an organisation to be assessed for the half price taxis only to be told they have to have an ongoing handicap to qualify. Well try being old. That's a bit of and ongoing handicap! This 'improved' bus service has been a complete failure Mr Collings. Get out of that car and walk up a Dunedin hill. No public service at all.