The National Transport Authority has introduced the JAM Card on all public transport, aimed at helping those with learning disabilities or communication difficulties to discreetly communicate that they need extra time boarding.
The JAM Card is an innovation from NOW Group, an organisation based in Belfast, which allows people with a learning disability or a communication barrier to indicate easily and discreetly that they might need ‘Just A Minute’ when accessing public transport.
Passengers with a learning disability, autism, or any other communication barriers can show the driver their card to convey that they need an extra degree of understanding and communication.
The NTA’s aim in introducing the card is to continue in its efforts to make public transportation safe and accessible for all passengers, regardless of their circumstances.
JAM Cards are available in the standard card form or as a smartphone app for ease of access. Drivers on all Transport for Ireland platforms have been trained to recognise the card.
Anne Graham, CEO of the National Transport Authority, said: “We are proud to partner with NOW Group in this fantastic initiative, one that will make getting around the country easier and more comfortable for everyone.
“Public transportation can be overwhelming at times, and the JAM Card allows users to signal to drivers in a discreet and dignified manner that they might need ‘Just A Minute’.
“We hope that using the JAM Card will help passengers to feel more confident when using public transport. We are particularly grateful to Ciaran Delaney; without his advocacy on this issue we would not be here today launching the JAM Card.”
Shane Ross TD, Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, said: “The JAM Card is going to have a positive impact on public transport, not only for those who use the card, but also for drivers and other passengers.
“Quite often, disabilities and communication barriers are invisible. I believe it will help the general public to be more patient and understanding when interacting with others on public transportation.
“I am very pleased to back this initiative alongside the NTA and NOW Group and look forward to witnessing its success.”
Maeve Monaghan, CEO of NOW Group, said: “We’re delighted to partner with the NTA to bring the JAM Card to public transport users across Ireland. We work to improve access to jobs and services for people with learning difficulties and autism.
“Our participants developed the JAM Card so to see the scale of staff training and promotion to customers across the transport network is a great boost to them. It is proof that they came up with a truly innovative idea and that JAM Card training is a great way to improve customer service for all businesses.”
To get a a card, users can request one directly by visiting the website and filling out the request form.
JAM Cards will be available at Dublin Bus’s O’Connell Street office, as well as at Connolly, Pearse and Heuston stations. The JAM Card is also available as a mobile app.