Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Another incidence of the sexual assault of a passenger with disabilities by a para transit driver

According to media reports here and here, a para transit driver in Toronto has been charged with sexually assaulting a 21-year-old woman with cerebral palsy and threatening to kill her. This is the third time that a Toronto paratransit driver has been charged with sexually assaulting a passenger in the last six months.

The problem, of course, is not unique to Toronto - as one of the bloggers at the blogspot What Sorts of People reminds us is this post, over the years, hundreds of people with disabilities have reported being sexually abused by transportation providers and many more, perhaps the vast majority of cases, go unreported. What's not widely recognized, however, is that the "most frequent disability among passengers with disabilities who are assaulted by transportation providers are intellectual" or developmental disabilities. One of their findings, based on their data of 622 passengers with disabilities who reported being sexually assaulted by a transportation provider is that almost half "were described as having intellectual or developmental disabilities." One of the reasons they are often selected is because they are viewed by their offenders as unable or unlikely to report it or to be believed if they do.

To read the rest of their post about this problem, see here. There's lots more ...