Public transport can be a lifeline for older people who are no longer able to drive. Find out how services can make a real difference to people living with dementia.
Why it matters
People with dementia face a range of challenges. These may include difficulty in recognising people and places and handling and managing money.
When accessing public transport they may experience the following difficulties:
- Forgetting where they are going, where to get off, where to change stations, or who to meet at the other end.
- Paying on ticket machines or recognising coins
- Recognising dangerous features or safety prevention such as the yellow line, gates, or out of access areas.
- Finding the word to ask for ticket desk, toilets or the platform so may use different or odd words. Or, being able to access and understand information online.
It is therefore important that all areas of public transport are geared up to support people with dementia. Enabling them to remain independent and stay connected with their friends, families and communities.
Ensuring your transport organisation is dementia-friendly will have a positive impact on the wider society, as well as your business.
Older people are spending money across the economy and transport is one of the top 3 growing sectors for older consumers (ILC,2019) Read further information on the paper published.
What can transport services do?
There are three main ways that transport services can become more dementia friendly. These are;
- Join Dementia Friends - We encourage all transport services to increase their awareness and understanding of dementia through our Dementia Friends initiative.
- Use Dementia-friendly signage - Download our environment checklist to ensure your environment and signage is fit for purpose.
- Download our business and bus guidance - For more dementia-friendly guidance for your service, download our dementia-friendly business guide or bus travel leaflets
How can the public transport sector support people affected by dementia during coronavirus?
Transport play a vital role in the lives and wellbeing of people living with and affected by dementia. We need you to take action and support people affected by dementia during the coronavirus pandemic to help ensure they can still access local amenities and complete essential travel.
Here are some of the key actions you can do today to make a difference to people’s lives:
- Provide one free journey for each elderly person per week, to allow them to get their groceries.
- Work with pharmacy chains for prescription deliveries.
- Use taxis as central points to put up posters with information on what is going on in the local are so people are aware of what is available.
- Prioritise pick-ups for vulnerable groups.
- Reassure customers of how you are keeping your taxis clean and sanitised and provide hand sanitiser and wipes in vehicles.
Visit our specific bus page for guidance.
Face coverings for people affected by dementia
Please make sure to read our regularly updated information on face coverings here.