skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Thursday, July 18, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

GOP VP Nominee Vance calls Republicans champions of the middle class; President Biden is isolating with Covid while sources say Schumer privately urged Biden to step aside in the 2024 election: NY bill addresses monopolies, anti-trust loopholes; ACLU of Alabama launches Project MOVE to boost voter turnout.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Ohio Sen. JD Vance makes an 'America First' VP nomination acceptance speech. Tough national security talk papers over GOP complexities on foreign policy. Sen. Bob Menendez resigns and President Biden catches COVID.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

It's grass-cutting season and with it, rural lawn mower races, Montana's drive-thru blood project is easing shortages, rural Americans spend more on food when transportation costs are tallied, and a lack of good childcare is thwarting rural business owners.

Report: Self-Driving Cars Could Improve Lives of People with Disabilities

play audio
Play

Thursday, January 26, 2017   

OLYMPIA, Wash. -- Washington state lawmakers are in the beginning stages of developing regulations for self-driving cars, but they're already being asked to keep people with disabilities in mind.

A research paper commissioned by the Ruderman Family Foundation and Securing America's Future Energy explored the ways autonomous cars could improve the lives of people with disabilities, including through employment opportunities and health care.

Nearly 6 million people with disabilities have difficulty finding transportation, and Jay Ruderman, president of the Ruderman Family Foundation, says this population needs to be part of the discussion.

"What we're trying to say to these companies is, like, 'Hey, the technology is there, and you're going to continue to refine it and develop it and make it better,” says Ruderman. "As you do that, consider people with disabilities because they can really not only benefit but society can benefit. They are the largest, untapped resource that we have in our country.'"

Ruderman adds that as many as 70 percent of people with disabilities in the U.S. are unemployed.

Self-driving cars aren't yet a reality for consumers, although many car manufacturers and technology companies are investing in them. Google currently is testing a self-driving car in Kirkland, Washington.

The study showed autonomous cars could not only improve accessibility to employment opportunities but save on health care costs, too. The analysis found more than 11 million medical appointments are missed every year because of inadequate transportation.

That amounts to about $19 billion in wasted healthcare costs because an individual with a disability did not have access to non-emergency transportation. Kristina Kopic contributed to the study, she says people who live in rural areas could benefit most.

"We think that especially in rural areas that don't already have access to public transportation, self-driving technologies would be a boon because you would really be allowing people curb-to-curb transportation."

Even para-transit, a product of the American Disabilities Act, can be exclusionary because it doesn't provide family members without disabilities to travel together, she adds, self-driving cars could become an inclusive form of transportation with enough consideration from manufacturers and government.


get more stories like this via email

more stories
In 2021, more than 40% of the nearly four mil­lion stu­dent par­ents nationwide were attending a community college. (foxyburrow/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

Postsecondary enrollment data for 2023 shows community college enrollment increased nationwide by more than 100,000 students, and a large percentage …


Environment

play sound

By Stephen Battersby for the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.Broadcast version by Kathryn Carley for Commonwealth News Service…

play sound

Biofuels are painted as a greener energy alternative to fossil fuels but a new study found the industry produces plenty of its own air pollutants…


New Mexico is home to 22.9 million acres of public lands, including the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks. (MarthaMarks/Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

Environmentalists are applauding a Bureau of Land Management decision to allow the sale of a small national public land parcel for an affordable housi…

Social Issues

play sound

The ACLU of Alabama launches a campaign to boost voter engagement. Alabama is grappling with one of the lowest voter turnouts in the country…

The Johnston Ridge Observatory at the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument is among the latest projects to receive improvement funds. (Francisco/Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

More than $27 million is coming to upgrade forests in the Northwest for recreation. The investment is the latest round of funding from the Great …

Environment

play sound

Two new studies find that without sustained intervention, California may permanently lose big sections of old-growth giant sequoia groves. The …

Environment

play sound

Pet lovers say a Minnesota cat that narrowly escaped death is in recovery after being thrown from a high-rise apartment building. They want …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright © 2021