ISLAND TRANSIT
CUSTOMER COMMENT PROCESS AND PROCEDURES GUIDELINES

Island Transit shall seek to continuously improve its services by encouraging comments, suggestions and feedback from our customers and the community at large regarding Island Transit services and employees. Island Transit shall provide a variety of avenues to receive input and shall ensure that all persons making comments receive an acknowledgment of their comment (s) and a reporting on the outcome of any investigation or changes that may result by the submission of their comment.

Island Transit welcomes and truly values all customer comments, suggestions and input. Though some comments may be regarded as complaints, we regard such comments as positive elements of ensuring we are providing our customers with effective, comfortable and convenient public transportation services. What appear to be complaints often times result in an improvement for over all service delivery.

Island Transit shall maintain a comprehensive education and outreach program to ensure that persons with special needs and the general public are aware of the methods by which the comment process can be accessed.

1. Accessibility

People desiring to make comments to Island Transit shall be able to do so in the following ways: in person, by telephone, by FAX, by e-mail, or by mail.

All Island Transit staff having public contact shall be provided training on the comment process and shall be able to initially record a comment he/she may receive.

2. Acknowledgement

Anyone who submits a comment and provides a telephone number, address, or e-mail address shall receive an initial acknowledgement of the comment within three (3) business days of receipt of the comment by Island Transit.

3. Investigation and Follow-up

Complaints or concerns shall be assigned to an appropriate Island Transit employee for investigation and follow-up. Comments and/or suggestions about Island Transit services will be assigned to staff responsible for service development or another appropriate department for investigation and follow-up.

4. Compliments

Compliments regarding individuals shall be forwarded to the employee and his/her supervisor for acknowledgement. Compliments for the agency shall be forwarded to the Executive Director or his/her designee.

5. Tracking

Island Transit shall maintain a tracking system for all comments that provides a unique identification of each comment and allows ready access to information on the status of the comment at any time.

The comment process, i.e. data entry, assignment, tracking, follow-up, response, reporting, shall be managed by designated Operations Department staff.

6. Responses

Island Transit shall provide a response to the person making a comment within fifteen (15) business days of receipt of the comment. Should the period of time needed for response exceed fifteen days, the person making the comment shall be advised of the status, in addition to receiving a final response.

Responses shall be in the format requested, i.e. written, verbal, e-mail, and/or alternative or accessible format.

7. Reporting

A summary of the status of all comments shall be provided to the Board(s), staff and employees on a periodic basis for use in reviewing and evaluating service, and planning.

8. Non-Discrimination

Island Transit shall ensure that the quality of service delivered to persons submitting comments to the agency will not, in any way, be negatively impacted by that submission. Island Transit wants our customers to feel comfortable with submitting any and all comments and suggestions. Customer input and interaction on service delivery issues play a vital role in improving our services and to meet our citizens’ needs. Retribution will not be tolerated at any level of the organization.

9. Education and Outreach

Island Transit shall provide information about access to the comment process to riders, employees, agencies that serve persons with special needs, and the general public in a variety of printed and electronic formats. These include, but are not limited to:

All educational and outreach materials shall include information on all local and 1-800 telephone numbers, website and e-mail addresses, and mailing addresses available through which comments can be submitted. Accessible formats are available upon request.

10. Appeals Process

1.  Island Transit Staff performs comment intake process and provides acknowledgement of comment within 3 business days. If the comment can be responded to on a staff level, staff will investigate and respond within 10 business days of receipt. If the comment cannot be responded to on a staff level, staff will acknowledge receipt of the comment within 3 business days and immediately forward the comment to a Supervisor.

2.  Passenger, within 10 business days of receipt of the staff comment response, must submit in writing, to the supervisor, a detailed explanation of comment and reason(s) why the response received is unsatisfactory.

3. If comment is received from staff, Island Transit Supervisory Staff will investigate and respond to passenger, within 10 business days. If comment appeal is received from passenger, investigate and respond to passenger within 10 business days.

4. If not resolved to your satisfaction, Passenger must submit in writing to management, reason(s) why the appeal response received is unsatisfactory within 5 business days.

5. Island Transit Management Staff will investigate and respond to appeal submitted, within 5 business days.

6. If not resolved to Passenger's satisfaction, within 5 business days submit in writing to Executive Director, reason(s) why the appeal response received is unsatisfactory.

7. The Executive Director will investigate and respond to the appeal submitted within 5 business days.

8. If not satisfied with the response from the Executive Director, submit within 5 days of Executive Director’s response in writing an appeal to the Island Transit Board of Directors. The Board of Directors shall consider appeal at a regularly scheduled Board meeting within forty-five (45) days of the appeal. The Executive Director shall transmit the Board of Directors’ decision within 5 business days of the meeting. The appeal to the Board of Directors is the final and last escalation of the appeal process and the final decision.


Snapshot of Comment Options

There are many options available to persons of special needs for comments, questions or concerns about any and all

Island Transit services, which include Fixed Route, Route Deviation, Paratransit services, and Vanpool services. These options include:

U.S. Mail
Operations Manager, Island Transit, 19758 SR 20, Coupeville WA 98239

Phone
Toll Free: (800) 240-8747 / North Whidbey: (360) 678-7771 /
South Whidbey: (800) 240-8747 / Camano: (360) 387-7433

Fax
(360) 678-4353

Email
info@islandtransit.org – Attention: Operations Manager

Comment Cards
Comment cards are available on all Island Transit buses. Customers may fill out a card and give it to the Transit Operator, or they may place it in the mail (return address provided on card).

Face to Face
Customers may call one of the above numbers to request a meeting with the Operations Supervisor or Operations
Manager. The meeting can be at the Island Transit Operations Base or another mutually agreed upon location, which may include the customer’s home if they are unable to meet elsewhere due to disability. If the customer determines his or her home would be the best location to meet, another Island Transit Supervisor will accompany the Operations Manager.

Other Accessible formats available upon request.