ACAT Meeting - September 26, 2012

Meeting Info

Date:Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Location:1900 Yonge Street, 7th Floor Boardroom
Meeting No:257
  • Agenda
  • Meeting Minutes

Agenda is not available for this meeting.
Please check the meeting minutes for meeting details.

Agenda is not available for this meeting.
Please check the meeting minutes for meeting details.

Agenda is not available for this meeting.
Please check the meeting minutes for meeting details.

Agenda is not available for this meeting.
Please check the meeting minutes for meeting details.


  • Valdo Tammark, Chair
  • Scott McArthur, Co-Vice Chair
  • Brayan Bratanov, Co-Vice Chair
  • Mazin Aribi
  • Debbie Gillespie
  • Penny Lamy
  • Lori March
  • Angela Marley
  • Lynn McCormick
  • Carol Anne Monet
  • Anna Noviss
  • Angela Rebeiro


  • William Castor
  • Howard Wax

Pool Member

  • Marian McDonell

TTC Representatives

  • Bill Frost
  • Ross Visconti
  • Bill Dawson
  • Thomas Hartley
  • Alex Grncarovski
  • Brian Sellwood
  • Janet O'Sullivan


  • Andy Byford
  • David Dixon
  • Bill Frost
  • Sameh Ghaly
  • Vince Rodo 
  • Mitch Stambler 
  • Jim Teeple 
  • Chris Upfold
  • TTC Commissioners 

1. Call to Order / Attendance

Valdo Tammark, Chair, called the meeting to order at 1:04 p.m. and attendance was taken.

2. Declaration of Conflict of Interest


3. Approval of Agenda

On motion by Mazin Aribi and seconded by Brayan Bratanov, ACAT reviewed and approved the agenda with the following amendments.

  • Remove Item 7, Rail Vehicle Engineering – Toronto Rocket and Light Rail Vehicles
  • Remove “Nil” after CLP Update

4. Review and Approval of  August 30, 2012 Minutes

On motion by Angela Marley and seconded by Carol Anne Monet, ACAT reviewed and approved the Minutes with the following amendments:

  • Pg 4, pp 1, under Communications Subcommittee, Dante's last name is “Nocera”
  • Pg 7, pp 7, the entire paragraph to be revised to, “Angela Marley asked if there are initiatives to ensure WT customers move on to the conventional system.
  • Mr. Frost responded yes, these are planned for a later time.”
  • Pg 8, pp 2, the entire paragraph to be revised to, “Operators have been requested to announce destinations at terminals.”

5. Business Arising Out of Minutes/Outstanding Items


6. Deputation

Ms. Carole Nash – Letter (attached)

Ms. Nash spoke to ACAT, asking if anything can be done about the loud noise as trains approach the stations. Ms. Nash feels that this is a health hazard for people waiting at the platforms. TTC employees wear ear plugs. She noted that the loud noise only happens with some trains, and not just at Union Station.

Mr. Bill Dawson offered some possible sources - squealing wheels, the power system (chopper control), and the external air conditioning system on the Rocket trains. The TTC has attempted to minimize these noises but can revisit the issue with the Design Review Subcommittee.
Mazin Aribi suggested performing a survey of which trains cause this loud noise. If the issue is wear and tear, then the problem may be pinpointed if not all trains have this noise.

Penny Lamy suggested that there be a consultation with a subject matter expert regarding just how damaging this noise is, to determine if people are at risk.

On motion by Debbie Gillespie and seconded by Brayan Bratanov, TTC staff will provide a status report on the noise issues on subway trains to the Design Review Subcommittee, who will then bring it back to ACAT. This will then be reported back to the deputant, Ms. Carole Nash.

Mr. Alan Yule - Presentation

Mr. Yule presented his deputation to ACAT, wherein he suggested replacing the red seat covering on the priority seats on TTC vehicles with blue fabric, similar to the colour in the blue International Symbol of Access, making these seats visibly different and designated for passengers with mobility issues.

After some discussion, ACAT agreed with Mr. Yule's proposal that coloured seats will help to indicate to the public that they are priority seating. The coloured seats are more intuitive than the text that many customers do not read. Additional recommendations were given, including:

  • Adding the text “TTC By-law” to priority seating signage which will allow Operators to enforce it when they ask customers to give up their seats.
  • Involving the Communications Subcommittee to ensure that the need for priority seating is communicated to the public.
  • Communicating these adjustments to the public in the accessibility tip section of the Metro paper and the PA in the subway system.

Action: Mr. Bill Frost will look into this issue and report back to ACAT.

ACAT thanked Mr. Yule for his deputation.

7. Rail Vehicle Engineering – Toronto Rocket and Light Rail Vehicles

Removed from Agenda.

8. Subcommittee Reports and Updates

Service Planning Subcommittee (SPS) - Anna Noviss, Chair

Anna Noviss provided an update to the Committee.

The Service Planning Subcommittee met on September 5 and on September 19, 2012. The meetings were held to complete the Committee's review and classification of the comments received at the May Accessibility Forum and this work is now complete.

The next steps will be to:

  • Confirm that TTC staff have distributed the detailed comments to the appropriate Department heads
  • Distribute the classified comments to other ACAT Subcommittees along with the Subcommittee's suggestions as to which comments are worth pursuing as Subcommittee items
  • Advise TTC staff on assembling information/responses to be put on the TTC web site

Design and Review Subcommittee (DRS) – William Castor, Chair

Anna Noviss provided an update to the Committee.

The Design Review Subcommittee met on September 5, 2012. The items addressed included the following:

  • Finalization and transmittal of comments on Metrolinx's LRV soft mock-up based on the July 17th field visit
  • Review of Coxwell Station Design – elevators and accessible features
  • Review and update of DRS Outstanding Items

Communications Subcommittee (CS) - Howard Wax, Chair

No meetings were held.

Wheel-Trans Operations Subcommittee (WTOS)

No meetings were held.

9. Customer Liaison Panel (CLP) Update – Mazin Aribi

The third CLP meeting was held on Wednesday, September 12, 2012, at TTC Head Office.

The items discussed included the following:

  • Further review of the four customer personas: special needs, leisure, tourist, and commuters. This came from the document “Understanding Customer Segmentation.”
  • Mr. Chris Upfold presented the 2nd quarter Customer Satisfaction results. A greater number of customers are middling on a scale of 1 to 10, rated 5 or 6. Overall, there were minor changes from the 1st quarter.
  • The Customer Charter. This is one of the 78 recommendations that for the TTC to create a document of employee responsibilities to customers. The CLP looked at other charters and discussed ideas for the TTC Customer Charter.
  • Mr. Chris Upfold asked the group for future agenda items that members are passionate about such as disruption of elevators, inexpensive ways to make the TTC cool, subway sponsorship, and inter-city transfer between GO and TTC.

The next meeting is scheduled for October 17, 2012 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

The next Town Hall meeting will be November 15, 2012 from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at 100 Queen Street West. ACAT members are encouraged to attend.

Angela Marley suggested that the work that the Wheel-Trans Operations Subcommittee did on developing a Customer Bill of Rights and Responsibilities may have content which is useful for the CLP in developing a Customer Charter.

CLP meetings are still not open to the public.

10. Report on Commission Meeting and Accessibility Matters

No Commission Meeting was held.

The last Town Hall meeting was cancelled.

11. Review of Correspondence

Jennifer Beer

Ms. Beer raised an issue regarding the lack of accessibility for riders who are deaf and hard of hearing in communicating announcements on the new subway trains. The text on display screens instructs passengers to listen to the driver announcement. Ms. Beer suggested, as the vast majority of TTC announcements are based on standard phrases, that they could be pre-programmed into the system.

The ACAT Chair has sent a written reply to Ms. Jennifer Beer advising her that her concern and request have been recorded and are now part of the outstanding items for the Design Review Subcommittee.

Michael Miceli

Mr. Miceli brought forward an idea of installing electronically-controlled height adjustable seats on all Wheel-Trans buses or, as an alternative, to install seats that are higher off the ground. This will assist customers who have difficulty rising from a seat.

A reply to Mr. Miceli is in progress.

12. Other/ New Business

Temporary Accessible Stops on Inaccessible Routes

Mazin Aribi brought forward the issue that accessible buses are temporarily being used on inaccessible routes, specifically 510 Spadina and 509 Harbourfront, but they do not always act as accessible stops. A few people have been refused service and Supervisors at the station are unaware of this. Mr. Aribi recommended that, while assessing which stops are good to accommodate passengers, they can deem if they are accessible and put up the signage wherever possible. Deem it temporary but accessible, and communicate this to Operators and Supervisors at the stations.

Mr. Bill Dawson advised that this can be taken as a suggestion but that it cannot be determined immediately if it is feasible. However, this it is a relevant issue in particular for Eglinton.

Mr. Bill Frost stated that they will immediately advise Operators to pick up passengers when safe at these accessible stops.

Fare Increases

Mazin Aribi brought forward the concern that some customers may not be able to afford the fare increases that will be discussed at the next Commission Meeting, especially customers on ODSP welfare. He asked if ACAT can do anything, perhaps have a deputation to indicate to the Commission that there are vulnerable people who cannot put up with the fare increases.

Penny Lamy volunteered to do a deputation at the Commission Meeting regarding ACAT's concerns about the impact of fare increases on persons with disabilities who often have lower economic opportunities.

ACAT discussed the possibility of a formal deputation from the Committee. Reasons against it included that ACAT is an advisory committee and not an advocate. Reasons for it included that ACAT provides advice on economic barriers as well as physical barriers to accessible transit.

ACAT put it to a vote.

On motion by Penny Lamy and seconded by Lynn McCormick, an ACAT member will attend the Commission Meeting and make the deputation that ACAT is concerned about the impact of continuing fare increases on the disabled community and list two or three reasons why.

7 votes for.
5 votes against.

The motion passed.

Penny Lamy was chosen to make the deputation.

Action: ACAT Chair Valdo Tammark will send the email to let the Commission know that Ms. Lamy will be at the meeting to represent ACAT.

Action: Penny Lamy will send ACAT the text that will be presented to the Commission.

Metrolinx Public Forum

Valdo Tammark informed the Committee that Metrolinx will be holding its Forum on accessibility on September 27, 2012, from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at Metro Hall, 55 John Street, Rooms 308 and 309.

Debbie Gillespie reported on a previous Metrolinx Forum. It was set up in intimate groups of round tables. There were four topics; each table had two topics and subject matter experts. The Forum focused on people having their say on the topics that they chose.
ACAT Information Session

Mr. Ross Visconti announced that the ACAT Membership Information Session will be held on Tuesday, October 2, 2012, from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. and on Thursday, October 4, 2012, from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., at Toronto City Hall. Advertisements were also placed in local newspapers. ACAT members are welcome to attend the session if they wish.

13. Next Meeting – October 25, 2012

The next meeting of ACAT will be held on Thursday, October 25, 2012, in the 7th Floor Boardroom, 1900 Yonge Street.

14. Adjournment

On motion by Brayan Bratanov and seconded by Debbie Gillespie, the meeting was adjourned at 2:17 p.m.

Janet Wright
Recording Secretary

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