Early in 2001, Boston Self Help Center launched the RIDE Advocacy Project (RAP), a grassroots community-organizing campaign whose aim was to substantially improve the MBTA’s paratransit service, THE RIDE.

RAP was an active BSHC program for over seven years. During that time it had numerous victories, both large and small. For example, RAP was instrumental in bringing the RIDE’s poor performance to the attention of both the general public and the MBTA. It was also at RAP’s instigation—and stubborn insistence—that THE RIDE underwent a major evaluation for ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) compliance. This helped strengthen the voice of RIDE users in shaping RIDE policies and led to immediate improvements in RIDE service.

Today, BSHC’s community-organizing campaign is on hold, but we continue to address the transportation concerns of people with disabilities through the following activities:

  • Monitoring AACT (Access Advisory Committee to the T)
  • Assisting RIDE users with their questions and concerns about THE RIDE, including supporting them in making their concerns known to the MBTA
  • Assisting individuals in applying for THE RIDE
  • Explaining paratransit rights to people from both in-state and out
  • Advocating for paratransit access for people with multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS) (see “About Our Multiple Chemical Sensitivity Project”)
  • Explaining how MassHealth transportation works, including how to determine eligibility and how to apply.

If you have transportation questions or concerns, feel free to leave a message for us at 617-777-3861. We will return your call within two business days.

“Because of my disabilities, I have trouble expressing myself and a lot of people don’t understand me. I feel like you guys really listen to me. Whenever I have a problem, like with THE RIDE or getting other services I need, I just call you and you help me find exactly what I’m looking for.”