People with personal lived experience of disability have been appointed to the boards of each of the five public transport bodies.

Making the announcement, Minister for Transport Shane Ross said today marks a "fairly radical departure in the history of State board appointments."

He said that for too long, people with disabilities have been restricted to expressing their views and needs in the media.

From today, those voices will be heard at the very top of the State boards overseeing the provision of our country's public transport system, he said.

Minister Ross announced the appointments to the boards of Bus Éireann, CIE, the National Transport Authority, Dublin Bus and Iarnród Éireann.

He said the new appointees' role will be to challenge management in making public transport vehicles accessible for people with disabilities.

Welcoming the move, Disability Federation of Ireland CEO John Dolan said the participation of people with the lived experience of disability is critical.

But he said it cannot be a substitute for those boards exercising their statutory responsibility to provide disability accessible public transport.

The move has also been welcomed by Fianna Fáil, but the party's transport spokesperson Robert Troy said he hopes that Minister Ross' responsibility for providing accessible transport does not end here.