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Easter Seals Project ACTION (ESPA) is funded through a cooperative agreement from the Federal Transit Administration and is charged with promoting cooperation between the transportation industry and the disability community to increase mobility for people with disabilities of all ages. In late 2005 ESPA convened a panel of experts from transportation agencies and associations, higher education, the disability community and the personnel recruitment field to explore strategies related to the recruitment, training, retention and rewarding of paratransit managers. The purpose of the meeting was to review the current situation and suggest remedial steps. Panel members focused on and recommended solutions in response to these questions: o How do we get young people engaged in paratransit: recruit, retain, train, and reward? o How do we get students and new graduates to see it as an opportunity, a career path? o How can we attract people with disabilities to work in paratransit? o What training is available now? What kind of existing training, both academic and continuing education is available, who offers the training and where is it offered? o What actions need to be taken to improve recruitment strategies for people to work in all transit modes? o What are the appropriate courses and curricula for educating transit and land planning? o What are some strategies for recruiting (new employees), training, retaining (current employees), and rewarding transit managers in order to increase their competencies in serving all customers, specifically those with disabilities? o How do you identify qualified staff, with appropriate knowledge and skills and then encourage them to pursue careers in public transportation? A synopsis of the event’s summary report will be presented at this Transportation Research Forum. The presenter will be available following the presentation and throughout the Forum to discuss the report and network with others interested in supporting these efforts. Copies of the summary report are currently available through ESPA and will be distributed at the Forum.


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