From Sunday 1 October, members of the Queensland Government’s Taxi Subsidy Scheme (TSS) will, at long last, benefit from the TSS lift fee.
A significant number of our customers currently use the TSS, which subsidises taxi travel for people with specific disabilities by covering half of their total fare, up to a maximum of $25 per trip.
In December 2016, the State Government announced it would provide a $20 lift fee to drivers of wheelchair accessible taxis for TSS jobs.
While it was effective immediately, customers did not receive the benefits because the contractual conditions of the payment did not include a requirement for the driver to only turn on the fare meter once the passenger was fully secured in the vehicle.
Spinal Life Australia has been a continuous advocate for this issue to be rectified and we have now been advised by the Department of Transport and Main Roads that from 1 October 2017, drivers of TSS jobs must not turn the fare meter on until the customer is fully secured.
Customers can take ‘fully secured’ to mean tie-downs and seat belts are secured, the driver has folded the lift, closed the entry door and returned to the driver’s seat to start the journey and the fare meter.
Drivers will need to be trained about this change of procedure and, in the early stage of its commencement, TSS customers are advised to be alert and have the courteous conversation if necessary.
If there is any concern you wish to follow up, keep your receipt because it tracks every aspect of a journey from booking to destination.
If a driver has no knowledge of the new procedure, ask them to contact their base control to confirm the lift fee requirement by the government.
Click here to read the new regulations, which can be found in Section 58 of the Transport Operations (Passenger Transport) Regulation 2005.