WE WILL NOT BE SILENT                          
   Like an oak we bend, but do not break

May 2019 Alert:  

The week of May 27-31, Join our annual NPPMA (National Paratransit People's Movement Assembly ) rally to honor paratransit riders who have passed away and those who supported paratransit riders through IMPRUVE or BNICEH who have passed away.   

This year we pay special tribute to

Jim Rhodes 

His wife Dr. Anne Scheetz made a memorial donation in his name last year upon his death.

Jim volunteered and attended many events on behalf of the Alliance for Community Services and with his wife made many donations to IMPRUVE.

He supported paratransit riders morally and financially. 

He was a wonderful person. 

Contact Cecelia Jackson 773-544-9488 or Joanne Tillis 773-255-2113 to volunteer or participate or be on the program to say brief words of 15 -60 seconds about a paratransit rider whose name we call or whom you know has passed away. Positive memories only.

Date, time and location being finalized.  Get on email list  to be notified  of all IMPRUVE paratransit, Rider-Driver Alliance and NPPMA actions. 

We are currently only using Robocall list from DialmyCalls  for emergencies or dues paying members who do not have email until assets and interest justify continued use. 

This is 2nd year we will not have a march.  We are not protesting Pace, but honoring and memoralizing fellow paratransit riders and supporters.  

We are gathering support for the capital plan and the new improvements we expect in Trapeze, transfer points, vehicles, driver retention, and some that have already begun. 

The new Pace director Rocky Donahue is quite familiar with legislative and govt processes and is working with us through the Paratranst Coalition as well as working with the Pace ADA Advisory Council to improve rider experience with customer relations and now accepts driver comments, complaints and solutions to paratransit issues,.

Drivers are free without penalty to report systemic issues that are not union-related or that Pace would like to resolve with rider and driver input. 

Please do not be afraid if you are not a unionized driver and have been threatened with suspension or termination if you attend a Pace, IMPRUVE or RDA (Rider-Driver Alliance) meeting or make a comment about the carrier or manager or dispatcher to IMPRUVE or Pace or RDA or ask for a raise and instead are old you will be terminated instead. 

Together we can solve these problems, but you cannot be silent and expect improvements.  If you know what's wrong that can be fixed - tell it to Pace or we will tell it for you. 

IMPRUVE cannot continue its advocacy and activism for seniors, home services, youth and paratransit riders without your help. Donations in April thru August 2019 will help us to remain open. Please  keep donations flowing. 

We need your donations, dues,and 

help. We seek more directors and 

officers and volunteers, so we 

can continue. For credit card users, 

donate by PayPal or Square (for 

Square, check with Joanne Tillis 



For PayPal, see donate links below


You can sign up if you do not have a 

PayPal account at time you donate.



Paratransit Riders and Drivers: 

Please click this LINK to take 

the Paratransit Survey 

Thank You

You cannot receive a blessing nor give a blessing with closed fists. Gratitude attracts blessings.

Are you grateful?

2019:  Another year to stand up for paratransit and accessible public transit rights and form new alliances between those who ride and those who drive accessible buses, trains, vans, and wheelchair taxis. Join us. Be a voice or give a hand for social justice, human rights, worker rights, public accountability, and the end of fear and procrastination in demanding change, better services, and less discord between riders, drivers and those who are responsible for paratransit funding, statutes, and services. NOW.

 Calling All Paratransit Riders and Drivers, Fixed Route Riders, Too

Join Rider-Driver Alliance in Chicago

Support $116 million Pace capital budget 

Rocky Donahue, new Pace CEO as of March 1, 2019 

is no longer interim director.  He is the new permanent director. He is working with the Paratransit Coalition to get a capital budget  passed to enable Pace to make needed changes to improve routing and real-time  tracking by Trapeze. Pace is also seeking separate funds to buy almost 1000 new vehicles, not the cutaway vans of SCR and MV that are injurious to clients with bone, joint, nrv and muscle pain or issues.

 New!! Pace asked for the help of all riders, drivers and advocates to solve the  problems of paratransit service. Drivers are welcome who are off duty to attend public meetings of Pace on the Paratransit and offer solutions, ideas or submit to Rocky Donahue at Pace. [email protected]  

He also said though he did not know how it would work that he was receptive to listening to us and possibly supporting rider-owned Paratransit!!  

This is a milestone we have worked to reach since 2007- inclusion of all stakeholders--riders and driver especially in improving ontime performance and poor routing, and allowing drivers to suggest better practices and vehicle specifications that would be better for drivers and riders.

He announced that he wanted to hear from drivers, too, at the Disability Rights Consortium meeting Dec. 5, 2018 held from 9:30 am - 11 am (actually went to noon) at Equip for Equality 20 N. Michigan Suite 300 Chicago.  We attended in person and by teleconference. 


Reminder!! Riders have always been welcome  to Pace public meetings and RDA meetings. 

Drivers are also welcome to RDA meetings every 3rd Monday from 5:30-7:30 pm at Access Living 115 W. Chicago Ave.  RSVP to Dr. Maat 773-416-7366 or Cecelia Jackson 773-544-9488 or [email protected]


Rider-Driver Alliance

Voted to Unite 

Paratransit Riders and Drivers Again 

Our Meetings are held the 3rd Monday

every month except January

5:30-7:30 pm at

Access Living 115 W. Chicago Ave.

Register at 773-416-7366 

Please be on time

IMPRUVE annual meeting and board elections 

December 27, 2019 (details TBA)

Next RDA Meeting Monday June 17, 2019 

Show your Support

Wear or purchase your RDA tshirt to wear at meetings involving the paratransit or CTA or wheelchair taxis or Metra or RTA

We are Green, Anti-Violent, and ATOD-free. We Support No GMOs, No Pesticides, No Canola Oil, No Tobacco, No Alcohol, No Abuse of Seniors, Persons Who Are Disabled, Women Children. Please Do Not Bring Guns to Our Events. Please Do Not Smoke Near Persons Who Have Respiratory Issues or Chemical Sensitivities. Thank you for Respect of Human, Transportation, Housing  and Disability Rights. EVERY HUMAN BEING DESERVES A CHANCE AT LIFE & A HIGHER QUALITY OF LIFE ACCORDING TO THEIR NEEDS. Universal Single Payer Healthcare for All is the humane approach to healthcare. 

Since Feb. 20, 2000, we have been the paratransit riders' voice and advocate on the front line, behind the scenes and wherever we were needed to support those who fight for disability rights. We are the original Paratransit Minutemen.

Donate Now!

Logo for Rider-Driver Alliance

RDA is a Project of IMPRUVE 

CEO-President Position Vacant  
Since Fall, 2017
Executive Search Continues for a New CEO-President for BNICEH and IMPRUVE. Dr. Ayo Maat has retired/resigned after 25 years with BNICEH and 17 with IMPRUVE. She temporarily remains as advisor to the Board and Comptroller. CEO-President is not  a salaried position, but expenses are paid.

Will Crosby Calls for No Fare Increase by Pace for Paratransit Riders - Oct. 11, 2017 Outside Pace and Metra Offices at 547 W. Jackson Chicago

IMPRUVE needs volunteers now! And Funds!  HELP!!!

We Tried to Stop Pace fare hike January 1, 2018

But Only 90 Paratransit Riders Testified 

at Pace Budget Hearings! 

Pace Decided No Fare Increase for 2019

 Only 25 Showed Up at Protest at Pace Chicago Offices

 and Less Than 1% of  Paratransit Riders 

Have Filed Paratransit Surveys!!!

If you Ride 100 times per month, your transportation 

costs may have increased by $300 annually!

To  Help Our Constituents Pay the 25 Cents,  We Need Your Support

 HAVE YOU Seen Our Gofundme Page for 

"Quarters for Paratransit Riders Fare?"

Goal:  $25,000


What Every Driver Should Know 

What Every Rider Should Know

To Be Republished in 2019-2020

TBA: Paratransit  Coalition May Host a Townhall

 on Your Rights as Riders and Drivers  at Access Living

Review Summary Report by 

Paratransit Coalition of 

Access Living 

Title:  Transportation Delayed 

is Transportation Denied

Call 312-640-2100

Civil Rights Dept. 


Annual Membership Meeting, Board Elections, and 

Kwanzaa Celebration by Invitation

 IMPRUVE is not Gone. 

It is operated under the auspices of BNICEH





The annual meeting changed locations as of 2018.

Secretary-Treasurer Joanne Tillis to RSVP 



Save the date: Thu. December 27, 2019

Show Membership Card for Free Admission

Guests Must be pre-registered 

$5 suggested for food for invited guests and 

Members whose dues are unpaid

Only Members Can Nominate and Vote for Directors 

Must turn in Candidate Bios or Resumes By  Dec. 12 

All Members Can Vote and Eat

No Member Turned Away who RSVPs by Dec. 20

and Shows Up on Dec. 27 

Limited Space and Seating for 25-30 Persons


To File federal complaint or complaint with 

OEIG (Office of Executive Inspector General in Illinois for RTA, CTA, Metra, Pace), contact us 

[email protected] 

We are part of the Paratransit Coalition 

and partner with others:

Access Living, Chicago ADAPT, Equip for Equality, 

Friedman Place, CDAC, PTTP, Rider-Driver Alliance 



National Giving Months: 

Giving Tuesday is November 26, 2019

Giving Extended to 2019 for BNICEH and IMPRUVE

We Need Your Help and Your Complaints, Comments

We Need Volunteers, New Members, New Directors 

A New President-CEO


Many Ways to Give


We No Longer have Support of Bon Ton (Carson's)

They Went Out of Business

nor SparkPlug (Project grant ended Dec 31, 2017)



To Donate to IMPRUVE or BNICEH  for Giving  Day or Any Day - Click Yellow Donate button for PayPal - See  below to pay by credit or debit card or check.  You Can Also Pay Dues by PayPal. Just call us at 773-255-2113 or 773-703-8412 to pay dues by gift to PayPal at our acct: [email protected]  Have a heart.  Love the organization that has worked through the campaigns of IMPRUVE for 19 years on behalf of paratransit riders and th mother company BNICEH that has worked 27 years to promote holistic health and green living and dining, prevention, better mental health, ATOD prevention; and ensured that seniors, youth and persons who are disabled (PWDs)  have equal rights, civil rights and human rights through our advocacy projects.  Show your philanthrophy. GIVE. 

We are supported by volunteers. No major funding. 

Mainly Self-Funded. Give through PayPal to IMPRUVE 

Or give at our FundIMPRUVE Gofundme page.  Goal is $22,000.

To volunteer, request volunteer application.  Can receive here Call 773-255-2113 or CLICK Contacts Tab above to email or CLICK COMMENTS Tab to leave a comment

We are a family of paratransit riders working with volunteers, paratransit drivers, and are the foundng host of the Rider-Driver Alliance.  We host an informational booth at the Chicago Disability Pride Parade every July. We are  following a 5 year plan to rebuild the Rider-Driver Alliance (RDA)  through 2022 Beginning 2018, we include CTA riders who are disabled and CTA bus and rail workers from ATU 241 &  308.  TIn 2019, we plan to expand relationships with  wheelchair taxi  drivers. Supported by CDAC (Chicago Disability Activism Collective), IMPRUVE was successful in collecting signatures on its petition for Better Paratransit.  As a result, drivers got increases and services are being improved thanks to new director Rocky Donaghue. 

DON'T FRET. DON'T GIVE UP.  Work with us, the Paratransit Coalition and keep filing complaints anyway with Pace Customer Service. Complaints to carriers go nowhere. 

Better Paratransit Petition Calls for Public Townhall Forum 

Better Paratransit Petition targets in Illinois, not just the governor, but MOPD (Mayor's Office for People with Disabilities), OEIG, FTA, Transportation Committee Chair Alderman Anthony Beale, and House Speaker Mike Madigan. MOPD has been cooperative. 

Anyone can sign. But please identify if you are a paratransit rider or driver. 

Chicago Has A Voting Representative on Pace Board

Commissioner Karen Tamley of MOPD (Mayor's Office for People With Disabilities) expresses that she is a voting member on the Pace board of directors.  Chicago has the largest ridership.  However, a fair share of funds come from suburban mayors and township presidents. 

The images (photos) change that are below the healing hands above when you click the images to left or right.  An arrow will appear left or right. The text and images below or on the side can be enlarged by zooming in.  

Our Mission Statement is found on the Page titled "About."  See tab above left under the healing hands on our banner header above. Click there for Mission statement and to learn Why Us (why we do this, why you should donate to us, why you should volunteer for us, why you should join our board of directors or advisory board).  

Board Meetings
The joint board of IMPRUVE and BNICEH meet on the 1st Tuesday of every month 1-3 pm  at Access Living unless announced otherwise. Closed to non-directors unless you are invited. The Executive Committee meets occasionally with chairpersons of committees and departments and at least annually the advisors meet with the CEO-president.

 CEO-President Position Vacant  Since Fall, 2017
Executive Search Continues for a New CEO-President for BNICEH and IMPRUVE. Dr. Ayo Maat has retired/resigned after 25 years with BNICEH and 17 with IMPRUVE. She temporarily remains as advisor to the Board, and temporary Webmaster and Comptroller.
Not a salaried Position, but expenses paid.

File Federal Civil Rights Complaints - No Penalty (see below)
Help provided  by phone or  come to meetings
Jobs- Employment 
 IMPRUVE Project:  Rider-Driver Alliance
Organizer Jobs Closed 12-15-16 . Will Reopen in 2018 when funding is renewed. 
Apply for organizer jobs online.  Two-5 organizers may be needed for February-Dec. 2018.  Stipend: at $15 an hour, 20 hours per month for 11 months  Send application with resume, agreement (request agreement for internship).
Click link below to apply.  Organizer Jobs Closed 12-15-16. Will reopen for 2018 if a new grant or funding is secured.

Temp Position - IMPRUVE
Administrative Assistant INTERNSHIP Reopened Jan. 15, 2018
- small stipend
Volunteers, ASL Interpreters and Grantwriters Needed
APPLY NOW!! Call  773-916-6228 
Send application and resume to:
If hired, will require you  to sign agreement.

Temp Position - IMPRUVE  - To Reopen
Healthy Research Interns to Explore Wellness Vendors and Grants for Wellness Seminars and Training
Data Entry-Internet Research Volunteers Needed Work At Home or School for 2 Weeks.  $50 Stipend Or Work Study . H.S. Students Ok. Enter Resources that we will contact for our Summer WellnessFair. Do MailMerge. Closes March 1,  2018 5 People Needed. Call 773-916-6228 Or email: [email protected]

Trouble with Poor Paratransit Service

Let's resolve it 

Join Rider-Driver Alliance. Sign up as a driver or a rider from paratransit, CTA, Pace, or wheelchair taxi. New leadership development training after funding resumes in 2019-2020.
Please note:  we will miss Ryan McGraw. He served 1 year as an organizer with RDA in 2017. He is now an organizer with Access Living.

Dr. Ayo Maat 773-416-7366 (project manager) 
Email: [email protected]

A custom car version of proposed green car powered by solar energy in which solar panes can be installed and nanotechnology used to add doors to satisfy any city's requirement that a NEV (vehicle) have doors.  Working on the issue of wheelchair ramps for passengers and drivers in larger vehicles.  Calling for help from rehab and mechanical engineers. See archives at

Dr. Ayo Maat, Kerry Washington, Jeanette Exom. Guess where?


ISPC at  Disability Pride Parade Lineup with ADAPT, IMPRUVE:  Wm Owens, Anne Scheetz, Susan Aarup, Maat and others July 23, 2016