June 9, 2014 Empire Service Rails to Recovery Program Provides Access to Life-Saving Medical Care

Craig Schulz

Amtrak Contact

212 630.6933


Beau Duffy

NCDOT Contact

518 457.6400


Sandra V. Nardoci

Voices of Hope Contact

518 366.7653

Qualifying families receive discounted fare on select travel

ALBANY – Amtrak, in partnership with New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) and Voices of Hope, has launched “Empire Service Rails to Recovery,” a new program providing discounted rail fare for passengers and families traveling for treatment of life-threatening medical conditions.

Qualifying passengers can receive a Buy One – Get One Free discount on state-supported Amtrak Empire Service trains operating in New York State. To qualify, passengers should visit the Voices of Hope website and register with one of 22 participating member agencies. Once registered, the customer is directed to Amtrak.com to book travel and receive the discount.

“Amtrak is proud to partner with NYSDOT and Voices of Hope to launch this important program,” said Amtrak Government Affairs Officer Bill Hollister. “As members of this community, we are pleased to provide a valuable service to the traveling public, especially families already carrying the heavy burden of debilitating illnesses.”

“We are excited to work together with Amtrak and NYSDOT on the Empire Service Rails to Recovery Program that will benefit so many of our Capital Region Voices of Hope families touched by life-altering conditions,” said Sandra V. Nardoci, Chair and Co-Founder of Voices of Hope. “This program will greatly assist our families both financially and emotionally and we look forward to a long and successful partnership.”

New York State Department of Transportation Commissioner Joan McDonald said, “NYSDOT is pleased to join with Amtrak and Voices of Hope to help families in need travel to receive urgently needed medical care. By discounting train fares for these important trips, we ensure that families have an affordable travel option that relieves the burden of traveling by car during a stressful time.”

About Amtrak®

Amtrak is America’s Railroad®, the nation’s intercity passenger rail service and its high-speed rail operator. Amtrak and its state and commuter partners move people, the economy and the nation forward. Formally known as the National Railroad Passenger Corporation, Amtrak is governed by a nine member board of directors appointed by the President of the United States and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Anthony R. Coscia is board chairman and Jeffrey R. Moreland is vice chairman. In FY 2014, nearly 31 million passengers traveled on Amtrak on more than 300 daily trains – at speeds up to 150 mph (241 kph) – that connect 46 states, the District of Columbia and three Canadian Provinces. Enjoy the journey® at Amtrak.com or call 800-USA-RAIL for schedules, fares and more information. Like us on Facebook, Follow us on Twitter (@Amtrak) and check out our blog at blog.amtrak.com.

About Voices of Hope

Voices of Hope is a consortium of non-profit 501(c)(3) organizations located throughout the Capital Region that meet quarterly to network, exchange resources, ideas and share best practices. The organization’s mission statement is “To Collaborate, Bringing Hope and Services to Children and Families Touched By Life-Altering Conditions.” More information is available on our website.


The New York State Department of Transportation’s mission is to ensure our customers – those who live, work and travel in New York State – have a safe, efficient, balanced and environmentally sound transportation system. The Department oversees 17,500 bridges, more than 15,000 centerline miles of roadway, and numerous facilities for bicyclists and pedestrians, in addition to developing and coordinating comprehensive transportation policy. NYSDOT also assists in the development and operation of transportation facilities for railroads, mass transit systems, ports, waterways and aviation facilities. The Department also maintains a comprehensive statewide master plan for the balanced development of commuter and general transportation facilities. You can follow NYSDOT on Facebook and on Twitter (@NYSDOT).