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Self-Directed Transportation in Allen County

This morning as I was sipping my coffee, listening to my favorite podcast, and watching the sunrise on my drive in to work, I forgot how lucky I am to be able to drive and have access to reliable transportation. Often people with disabilities are not able to drive themselves or can’t afford to purchase a vehicle to get to and from the places they want to go. Access to transportation is a struggle among people with and without disabilities. Allen County is fortunate to have public transportation, taxi services, Ubers, Lyfts, and Find-a-Ride. These are great choices but the cost for people with disabilities doesn’t always fit within what they can afford. With the DD provider shortage across the state, it has made it difficult for individuals with disabilities to get out and do things that they want to do, not just the things that they need to do.

On July 1st of 2022, DODD created a new service called Self-Directed Transportation (SDT). SDT helps individuals with disabilities who are on a waiver with the struggles of finding and funding transportation needs. What is fantastic about this program is that a person with a disability can pick whomever they want to provide the transportation. This could be a neighbor who has offered to take someone to the grocery store once a week, but would like money for gas; a person who lives on an RTA route that needs a bus pass to get to a job on the other side of town; or maybe even an 80’s rock enthusiast who wants to see a concert at the Civic Center and wants to ride home using a taxi. The transportation used is directed by the person and can be funded through the waiver once the need has been identified.

Self-Directed Transportation has opened doors for people with disabilities to be a bigger part of their community without the limitation on how they are going to get there. Here in Allen County, individuals are using the service to visit friends in Delphos via taxi. We have individuals using a bus pass with the RTA to get to and from work. We even have couples using SDT to have date nights at their favorite restaurant. How can Self-Directed Transportation help you get where you want to go? Please reach out to your SSA to find out how SDT can fit your needs.

By: Kristy Hudson, Lead SSA


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