NGO requests subsidized vans for disabled to vote

Yad Sarah asks Central Elections Committee chairman to subsidize vans taking disabled people to and from voting stations.

January 11, 2013 03:38
Ballots are printed ahead of elections

Ballots are printed ahead of elections 370. (photo credit: REUTERS/Baz Ratner)

Yad Sarah has asked the chairman of the Central Elections Committee, Justice Elyakim Rubinstein, to subsidize the cost of its Nechonit vans’ taking disabled people in wheelchairs to and from their voting stations on Election Day.

Moshe Cohen, director of the voluntary organization’s services and branches department, complained about “discrimination” against the those that will transport the disabled on January 22. Firms that take healthy voters to distant polling stations such as the Israel Railways and the bus companies are subsidized by the state, but not Yad Sarah’s van services, which have been operating at low cost to help the disabled for 25 years.

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Yad Sarah operates around the country 40 such vans, which have “elevators” that allow wheelchairs to enter.

Most disabled people have other way to get to vote. Ordinarily, the vans transport them to doctor’s appointments or make other urgent trips.

Every citizen has the right to vote, said Cohen, and since the wheelchair bound can’t reach a polling station within 20 kilometers of his residence via regular public transportation, we ask that our van trips be subsidized as well.

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