Why did you do this project?

    On May 19, 2020, the Standing Policy Committee on Infrastructure Renewal and Public Works asked the public service to review the issues of accessibility for Transit customers related to policies for strollers, priority and courtesy seating and operator assistance.

    The project was intended to better understand the needs of transit users and develop processes that recognize the needs of transit users with disabilities. Public and stakeholder feedback, along with a jurisdictional scan and Winnipeg Transit data were used to make recommendations for the future of priority space on Transit buses. 

    This review built on the February 2019 discussion paper outlining the Accessible Transportation Standard Terms of Reference, as part of the Accessibility for Manitobans Act (AMA). The provincial Accessibility Advisory Council (AAC) has drafted a Transportation Accessibility Standard in accordance with the AMA, part of which outlines new standards for priority seating and mobility aid spaces for transportation service providers, including Winnipeg Transit.

    What is priority seating? What is courtesy seating?

    Priority Seating is for the use of passengers with a disability. These seats are located close to the front of the vehicle. Customers are expected to respect and obey the purpose of the designated seating area, which means that if you are sitting in one of these designated seats, you MUST vacate the seat for a passenger with a disability.

    Courtesy Seating is intended to provide additional seating for people who will benefit from having a seat near the front of the vehicle including:

    • seniors
    • expectant mothers
    • adults traveling with infants or small children
    • any other passenger who may benefit from a seat

    If you are sitting in one of these designated seats, it is requested that you give up your seat to those who need it.

    What was the previous priority seating policy?

    Previously, priority seating areas were provided on a first-come, first-served basis on Winnipeg Transit buses.

    Why did you change the priority seating policy?

    Winnipeg Transit  explored options related to priority seating to align with the proposed Transportation Standard of the Accessibility for Manitobans Act (AMA).

    How will potential changes regarding priority and courtesy seating be communicated to the public?

    Potential changes are being communicated through a public education campaign. 

    Why would you need both Priority Seating and Courtesy Seating areas on a bus?

    Based on the AMA proposed Transportation Standard, Priority Seating areas are a regulatory requirement under the Accessibility for Manitobans Act. Courtesy Seating areas may be provided in addition to the Priority Seating area for passengers who may benefit from a seat, but may not have a disability.