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The worksheets in Tables 4 and 5 list nine different types of transportation providers, ranging from large-city transit agencies to nonprofits and other agencies. These tables also list strategies (described above) that transportation providers and VSOs can adopt to improve the mobility of veterans. Table 4 identifies the kinds of strategies that can be used to improve the mobility of individual veterans. This table is probably best filled out on a community-wide basis with entries for all transportation providers in the community. Table 5 illustrates some options for expanding transportation services to veterans. These ideas suggest how transportation providers might reach out to veterans and build a larger customer base. Transportation providers should find the types of agencies they represent from one of the nine columns and then review each row to see if they are doing all that they could be doing for veterans. This table is probably best filled out on a provider by provider basis. Note that, in order to ensure that transportation services plans are responsive to the needs of local veterans, a separate needs assessment should be conducted among the local veterans themselves. SUMMARY Community transportation providers who are interested in enhancing the mobility of veterans should use the information in this chapter. In order to enhance veterans' mobility, transportation providers need to understand which current perceptions concerning veterans' transportation are valid and which are not. After that step, the strategies that have been shown to be effective at other sites should be closely examined. To constructively apply strategies that have been effective elsewhere, it is important to have a full understanding of local resources and programs. Tables 3 through 5 describe how to collect information that will help to enhance trips for veterans and build connections with organizations now serving veterans. 69
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70 Table 4: HOW TO IMPROVE VETERANS' MOBILITY: HOW TRANSPORTATION AGENCIES CAN ENHANCE THE TRIPS VETERANS TAKE Strategies for improving Types of transportation providers mobility for veterans Large Small Human Medical Transit Transit Volunteer- VA- Non- Service Taxi Trans- Agency in Agency based affiliated profit Others Trans- Contractor portation Metro in Rural Program Program Agency portation Provider Area Area 1. Offer reduced fares to veterans 2. Offer flat-rate rides to VAMCs for veterans 3. Institute competitive contracting 4. Provide dispatching services for VSOs 5. Work with other agencies with transportation programs 6. Provide trips to local VAMCs 7. Provide feeder service to VA vans 8. Offer advance scheduled out of county trips to VAMCs
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Table 5: HOW TO IMPROVE VETERANS' MOBILITY: HOW TRANSPORTATION AGENCIES CAN BUILD SERVICES WITH VETERANS Strategies for building connections with VSOs Types of transportation providers Large Small Medical Transit Transit Volunteer- VA- Human Non- Taxi Trans- Agency in Agency based affiliated Service Trans- profit Others Contractor portation Metro in Rural Program Program portation Agency Provider Area Area 1. Provide vehicle acquisition assistance to VSOs 2. Share resources for driver training 3. Target marketing efforts to Veterans 4. Inform VSOs about the S. 5310 program