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Fighting transport poverty

Mobility for everyone

Because getting where you want to go is a basic right. Regardless of your situation, origin or physical capabilities.

What if you cannot reach your destination?

Being able to move freely is a basic right. Yet, not everyone has an easy time getting where they want or need to be.

Due to a lack of money, knowledge or skills, some people cannot easily get to work, to the store, to the sports club or to the doctor. These people live in transport poverty, which makes it harder for them to actively participate in society. In turn, this results in loneliness and social exclusion.

It's not all about the money

Transport poverty entails more than merely a lack of money to buy a car, petrol or a bus ticket. In other words, it is not the same as poverty in general.

People without financial problems can still experience transport poverty, for example because they live in an area with limited mobility services, because they have a disability that restricts their freedom of movement or because they lack the digital skills to buy a train ticket online. Limitations like these can also make people less mobile.

I went to the train station to buy tickets for a trip. It turned out the counter closes at noon these days. Taking the train is not easy if you cannot buy a ticket at the counter.


A complex problem with many faces

Transport poverty has many faces, affects people from all walks of life and occurs in both urban and rural areas. Factors such as income, age, education level, health and place of residence all play a role. This makes transport poverty a complex problem, without simple solutions.

My husband lives in a residential care center. To get there, I have to take two different buses. That is not easy with my walker.


How do we fight transport poverty?

To ensure everyone gets to their destination, Mobiel 21 conducts research into the causes and effects of transport poverty. We help policymakers take transport poverty into account when they develop local mobility plans. We ask them to focus on accessible basic services, there where people live. Proximity is and remains the best mobility.

Moreover, we work with partners and volunteers to offer people the knowledge, skills and tools they need to move around more freely and flexibly. We, for instance, teach adults to cycle in De Fietsschool and provide less mobile people with the opportunity to enjoy cycling again through Fietsen Zonder Leeftijd.

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