Hello newsletter readers,
In early January, I was on the Allegany Indian Reservation, based in Salamanca, N.Y., (a beautiful, albeit cold, time to visit that part of the world), providing technical assistance to the Seneca Nation's transit service, mainly surveying riders on-board. While not there on NCMM matters, I realized something new. I was riding on the run up to Irving, N.Y., when I realized that one doesn't need to have a job title in mobility management to be doing it.
I was enamored with the manner in which Rick, a long-term bus driver, managed his bus. Regardless of if you were a first-time rider or on a first-name basis, Rick wanted to know where you were going and how you wanted to get there. Making sure connections were lined up with neighboring services, that riders knew of the safest way to their destination from their stop, and providing literature and new information about the service to riders, Rick was helping people manage their mobility.
Newly working at NCMM, it has become clear to me that all working in, or with, the realm of transportation are connected through mobility management. Bus drivers, transit planners, mobility management practitioners, case workers and more all have a stake in getting people where they want and need to go, regardless of it being explicitly laid out in their job description. Even those not directly working in the realm of transportation can be a part of the mobility management continuum.
When I worked for a housing non-profit, I was the point of contact for a small repair program serving older homeowners. More often than not, the conversation evolved from an older person applying for repairs to help them age-in-place, to them discussing their difficulties in getting to doctors' appointments or their loneliness in not being able to easily visit family and friends. I ended up collecting information of local providers in the area and, if wanted or not known, provided their contact information. I wondered how the work of those actually doing mobility management (even though I didn't know it was called MM at the time) did what they did, and the impacts they made, but I was doing my own small part at it. A slight example of utilizing mobility management in a non-transportation-oriented realm.
As you read this month's newsletter, just keep in mind that some of the content on our website can be just as valuable to those on the periphery of mobility management. Share it with them. It may help to improve the lives of people in your community.
As always, if you have a written piece you'd like considered for NCMM's blog, Mobility Lines, any recommendations for website or newsletter content, or just want to reach out, my contact information is below.