Increase in social inclusion of older and disabled people through expanding the use of public transport

18 November 2021 - Published by Philippe Martens
Public Vervoer are right now promoting social inclusion of people with Wmo (social support act)-permit.

In Netherlands many people with a Wmo-permit have been in possession of a special travel pass for years. It has been common that these passes has not been checked therefore many automatically travel by taxi, though its not needed, until now. Using taxis is expensive transport for the municipalities. The use of taxis is expensive transport for the municipalities. The Wmo pass holders only pay a small part of the costs, the so-called entry fee.

These people are also transported in a parallel world, so the taxi often goes after a bus, where both the taxi and the bus are not optimally occupied. It would be better to combine these two types of transport where possible.

Selected croup of 750 participants

The first step is to make this group of people more familiar with public transport. That is why a group of 750 participants was selected, spread over 6 municipalities in the north of the Netherlands. These people are given the opportunity to use public transport for free for six months. This will start in January 2022. They also receive a companion pass with this free pass, so they do not have to travel alone.

Their travel behaviour is monitored: number of journeys and kilometres of public transport, number of journeys and kilometres of Wmo transport. The experience of travelling by public transport is also measured, including ease of transport, the role of hubs if they use both forms of transport. 

It starts  with a baseline measurement, followed by interim evaluations during the experiment and ends with a final measurement. All this is processed in a final report with a corresponding advice. This advice can be shared in the Netherlands, but also on a European level.

If it turns out that 30% more of these 750 participants have used public transport more often, the experimental project is considered successful. Municipalities can take these results into account when possibly adjusting their policy to be even more careful with the indication policy and to mention the possibility of public transport more often. Public Vervoer works towards satifisfied residents, saving on the costs of Wmo transport, more support for public transport and traveling together is also better for the environment!