Inclusion and Diversity – On the right track
Today, TTTP attended The Department of Transports Inclusion and Diversity week launch event/conference, at The Department of Transport in London. We were kindly invited by Richard Burningham from Devon and Cornwall Rail Partnership and Great Western Railway (GWR) kindly provied our travel tickets to attend and be involved in the coming together of transport organisations across the country – primarily rail organisations and community organisations.
This is not the first time we have been to an ‘Inclusion’ event. However, it is the first time that have attended an ‘Inclusion’ event directly associated with the transport sector.
There were several organisations and representatives there, and stories of ‘Inclusion’ were shared by 3 of them - an hour was spent listening to the speakers and watching the videos they had prepared. This included people working on the platforms beautifying the gardens (not too dissimilar to what we have been doing at the Crediton Station platform) whilst recovering from drug abuse, a graffiti project in Bristol to make the platform attractive and part of the community and a project to make the rail more accessible to people with Dementia – focusing on training staff and making it a more welcoming place.
There was also talk about making carriages more accessible, and a team of 1000 people being a part of this – this included people with and without labels, seemingly primarily focused on people physically disabled by the carriages… but very little talk about people with ‘learning disability’ or ‘autism’ labels and how they access the transport.
Going forward, signage was briefly discussed, making it more accessible to (not just disabled people) people in general. If signage is good, it should be accessible to as many people as possible. We took the opportunity to share our SmallTalk approach with some of the MDs there who were discussing the issue of signage and the opportunities to improve it when platforms are renovated/painted.
Often, ‘Inclusion’ events are more about celebrating what has been achieved and the small successes (which are steps in the right direction), and not so much about going forward and what steps need to be taken next; a plan of action and a group effort. It will be interesting to see how the week progresses and what opportunities are created as we all work together to turn our country’s infrastructure into a more inclusive network that connects communities.
To the organisations that were there (and those that could not attend) – our expert trainers and evaluation team are always willing to be a part of creating an inclusive rail network if we are invited. Feel free to come to our Tea Rooms on the Tarka Line, Crediton Train Station, if you want to have a chat. Alternatively, you’ll find us on social media, via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or on the phone: 01363 772512.
Thank you for inviting us to be a part of your day.
Written by Dom Palfreman, Published by Dom Palfreman