With more 80,000 young people accessing the Transperth network each month, it’s important that we ensure they can get to where they need to go safely. Unfortunately, many young people are not very experienced at assessing risk. This is something of which our frontline team is acutely aware as they face the challenge of keeping all our passengers safe during their commute.
Something you may not know about is that the PTA has a highly-acclaimed community safety program specifically designed to address these challenges. The Right Track is the PTA’s program that’s all about safe travel – with the aim of encouraging our young passengers to become more responsible for their own safety.
Through our youth engagement activities and school education program – which is endorsed by the School Curriculum and Standards Authority (SCSA) – we mentor and educate young people about risk and the role they need to play in the community to promote safe choices.
Our transit officers play a critical role in the delivery of key messaging. As the PTA’s front-line officers responsible for the safety of all passengers, TOs often have challenging, negative interactions with young people. In 2019, the Right Track program undertook a rapid social innovation process to challenge the assumptions and ensure our messaging and focus remain relevant and achieve their intended goal: to improve the overall safety of travel for young people on our services.
Using a strengths-based approach with everything we do when working with young people, our work is varied in form and delivery, with overarching themes of respect and safe choices.
“We love what we do,” says Right Track coordinator David McMahon. “The approach to address these underlying risk-taking behaviours is so different – we invite young people along for the journey.
“In addition to the SCSA-endorsed resources, we deliver our key program messaging through Urban Art, Hip Hop, Student Film and Reporter programs – involving our TOs to work alongside the students, breaking down the barriers of mistrust and building rapport along the way.”
The Right Track Reward Card program also aims to address this, providing an opportunity for TOs to have positive interactions and build trust with young people. The Rewards Cards help celebrate those making responsible choices.
“Ultimately, we want our young people to feel safe and respected, and feel they can go to our TO team for support – we need them to know and trust the systems that are in place, particularly those who are vulnerable.”
If you’re interested in knowing more about the PTA’s Right Track program, Click Here, and if you want to see the range of resources on offer Click Here.
If these programs could help address risk-taking behaviour at your school, we would love to hear from you. Email email@example.com or call 9326 2055 to see how we can work with your school community to bring about positive behaviour change for safer travel for all.
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