Disability & public transport. Working for you?

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62 posts
Can well believe it,

At least now people have the means to document/upload it now. Theres loads to be found all over YT.
PLANE PAIN : Disabled dad, 44, in tears after being left on a Thomas Cook plane for TWO hours after everyone else got off.

A DISABLED dad broke down in tears after being left on a plane for two hours after it landed because his special assistance never arrived.



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He had already spent 10 hours on the Thomas Cook flight from Florida which was taking him home from a dream £6,000 trip to Disney World with his daughter, 11.

But the dad says he suffered “distress and humiliation” after he was made to stay in his seat along with his carer and daughter while everyone else on board left.

Mr Khaliq, who has spinal muscular atrophy, told the M.E.N: "After a couple of hours I got distressed and started shouting.

“There was a moment when I was actually crying. My daughter saw me crying. I wanted this to be special for her.

"This was one of her dreams, to go to Disney World. It spoiled it a little bit.”

The drama only came to an end after newly recruited cabin crew came aboard for training.

Mr Khaliq, from Ashton-under-Lyne, outside Manchester, threatened to dial 999 to get the fire service to rescue him.

The new recruits' tutor raised the alarm but it took another 30 minutes for a wheelchair to be brought to the plane.

"They went to get some equipment but didn't return for about half-an-hour.

“When they did come back they said they'd had a problem with my wheelchair which had gone with the luggage rather being kept at the gate. I said 'just get me off the plane.'

"Then they lifted me out and got me off the plane. They used a smaller wheelchair."

The fiasco meant that Mr Khaliq had spent almost 13 hours in his seat - he had boarded the aircraft in Florida 90 minutes before the rest of the passengers.

'I WAS IN A LOT OF DISTRESS'

He said: "I was in a lot of distress, especially with my daughter who didn't leave my side. She stayed there with me the whole time. I was more worried about her. She's only 11.

"I was concerned that the cabin crew had left me because I believe they are not supposed to leave passengers on board."

The dad had booked the trip through DisabledHolidays.com and the company says it booked “special assistance” for him at Manchester Airport.

Mr Khaliq has spinal muscular atrophy which is a condition that makes muscles weak and causes problems with movement.

The genetic disease affects the part of the nervous system that controls voluntary muscle movement.

It causes an individual to lose the ability to walk, eat and breathe.

PLANE WRONG

ABM Aviation, which is partnered with Manchester Airport, has apologised and promised to investigate.

A spokesman said: “ABM Aviation endeavours to work closely with airports, airlines and other service providers to ensure a seamless service to all passengers.

"We are concerned to hear of Quamer Khaliq's complaint, received 13th June 2019, about his special assistance experience at Manchester Airport.

"Please be assured that we take all passengers feedback very seriously and are actively reviewing the situation to ensure a smoother process for the future.

"In the meantime, ABM Aviation sends their sincere apologies and assurance that we are deeply committed to service excellence for all passengers we serve.”

'CLEARLY UNACCEPTABLE'

A Thomas Cook Airlines spokeswoman said: “Mr. Khaliq’s experience was clearly unacceptable.

"On arrival into Manchester, our crew made multiple attempts to connect with Manchester Airport’s special assistance providers, and a member of the Thomas Cook Airlines team stayed with Mr. Khaliq until he was met at the aircraft.

“We have asked Manchester Airport to look into what went wrong with its provider to ensure that this does not happen again.”

A Manchester Airport spokesman said: "We are committed to ensuring all our customers enjoy a positive experience when travelling through Manchester Airport, and are therefore disappointed to hear the standards we expect of our partners do not appear to have been met on this occasion.

“We have raised this matter as a priority with ABM Aviation, our special assistance provider, and will work with all parties concerned to understand what happened here, and will ensure any lessons are learned.

“As an airport, we have invested heavily in the services we provide to passengers requiring special assistance over the past 12 months.

"We changed special assistance provider at Manchester at the start of this financial year and heavily invested in resource and new equipment.”
Disabled people in West Yorkshire let down by lack of fully-accessible toilets, figures reveal.


It is a situation reflected across the UK, with charity Muscular Dystrophy UK warning that a lack of facilities is "failing disabled people".

Disabled toilets with a changing bench, hoist, privacy screen and space for two carers are the only facilities that qualify as fully-accessible Changing Places, according to Government policy.

Research by Muscular Dystrophy UK shows that 67 toilets in West Yorkshire meet these criteria - equivalent to just 2.9 toilets per 100,000 people.

Provision varies considerably across the UK. Residents in Scotland have the best access, with 3.6 toilets per 100,000 population, while London has less than one per 100,000.

More than half of the toilets in West Yorkshire are found in public buildings, including community centres, churches and leisure centres, with most of the rest in attractions, such as theatres, libraries and museums.

Across the UK, just 18 pubs, restaurants and cafes have a Changing Places toilet, and less than one per cent of railway stations have fully-accessible facilities.

Muscular Dystrophy UK said the figures, released to mark Changing Places Awareness Day on July 19, "paint a disappointing picture".

Head of policy and campaigns Clare Lucas said: "Everyone deserves to use the toilet safely and with dignity, but the 250,000 disabled people who need assistance to use the toilet are being excluded from society because there aren't enough accessible toilets.

"Without enough of these vital facilities, people are being forced to cut trips short, stay at home, or even consider options as extreme as surgery.

"Going to the toilet is a basic human right, but too many disabled people are being denied this."

Charity Disability Rights UK added that the majority of standard disabled toilets are not fitted with adequate support equipment.

Chief executive Kamran Mallick said: "Standard toilets are designed to provide sufficient space, and other facilities such as grab handles.

"Changing Places go further, with additional equipment, such as height adjustable changing benches and overhead hoist systems."

According to Muscular Dystrophy UK, there have been positive developments in the campaign for fully-accessible toilets over the last 12 months.

In May, the Government launched a consultation on making the facilities mandatory in new, large public buildings.

The Department for Transport is also providing £2 million in funding to install fully-accessible toilets at motorway service stations in England.

Local Government Minister Rishi Sunak said: “We are determined to increase the number of Changing Places so people with disabilities have the freedom to enjoy days out in dignity and comfort.

“We are consulting on proposals that would add these life-enhancing facilities to more than 150 new buildings a year, including shopping centres, supermarkets, cinemas, stadiums and arts venues.

“I would like to encourage everyone to have their say before the consultation closes.”
Let's hope Mr Khaliq doesn't get a dvt through all that. If the plane had had a departing flight in an hour's time, they would have found a way to get him deplaned. The airport rep claimed to have invested heavily, another way to say the disabled negatively affect their bottom line.

Regarding lack of disabled toilet facilities, a sports club I use has just replaced their toilets. They've widen a cubicle door and stuck a disabled badge on it. I've already complained to my particular club that a £1 sign on a door does not a handicapped toilet make. This is the same place that has room for 100 cars to park but not a single one with a handicapped ♿ sign!
Paralympian Sophie Christiansen stuck on SWR train.

A gold medal winning Paralympian was left in tears after she became stuck on a train when there was no guard to help her off.



Wheelchair user Sophie Christiansen, who has cerebral palsy, tweeted a video of her ordeal on her London to Godlaming journey.

The footage shows a passenger holding the train doors open for the dressage rider until an exit ramp is provided.

South Western Railway (SWR) said it had apologised to Ms Christiansen.

The 31-year-old from Ascot said she was told SWR staff were aware she was travelling on the service but when she arrived at her stop there was no-one waiting with a ramp.

"It's always the general public helping me; I don't know what I'd do without them," she said.

"Without the help I probably would've ended up in Portsmouth at the end of the line because there is no real way for me to block the door to stop the train from moving."

Ms Christiansen said she "went home and cried" because of the repeated difficulties she faces over accessibility on trains.

She said she was stranded "one in 10 times" and called on the government to lobby rail companies to improve disabled access.

Despite previously speaking to SWR's inclusion manager about introducing automated ramps to make travelling for disabled people smoother, Ms Christiansen claims manual ones are still in place.

"I literally don't know what it will take for the rail in this country to make the service more accessible," she said.

"There should be a different system to allow me to be independent".


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Andy Masters, head of services at disabled rights charity Back Up, said stories like Sophie's were "all too common".

He said wheelchair users routinely needed to consider problems over access at stations and whether they would manage to find a guard to get them on and off trains.

"An easy journey is not a given, but being able to use public transport is essential to most people's daily lives.

"It allows us to go to work, socialise and get to where we need to be. Accessible stations allow disabled people to live the lives they want, just like everyone else.''

SWR said it was investigating the incident "as a priority" and it was reviewing the process "to make sure this doesn't happen again".

Rail Delivery Group, which represents UK train operators, said it was working to bring "thousands of new, more accessible carriages on track and speeding up the process for passengers booking assistance."
Update on an article posted earlier in this thread :


Hope for disabled passengers as Pontefract Monkhill Station may get step-free access at last,



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Pontefract Monkhill Station has no step free access from its Platform 1, resulting in hassle and difficulty for wheelchair users and pram-pushing parents.

Rail bosses have fielded years of criticism about the problem, with one disabled passenger saying this year that the lack of facilities left him feeling "like a second class citizen", as he's forced to make a seven-mile round trip to avoid the station every time he travels between his Pontefract home and Leeds.

Now, Wakefield Council has bid for £1m worth of cash from the Department of Transport to install a lift at Monkhill.

If successful, the local authority says it will put up an extra £1.2m themselves to help fund the venture.

Coun Matthew Morley, the council's portfolio holder for transport, said: "Currently, Monkhill Station is extremely difficult for our disabled residents to access, with many having to travel to Castleford to get a train. This is simply not good enough in 2019.

"This funding and our £1.2million contribution would enable a lift to be added to the existing footbridge, which will be refurbished, allowing much easier access.

"We hope the bid is successful and that we can help improve the lives of our disabled residents and visitors."

However, passengers will have to wait to discover whether or not the bid has been successful, with a decision on that not due until the spring of next year.

Among those affected by the problems is local man Damon Nicholson, whose case was raised by Coun Morley and Pontefract North councillor Lorna Malkin earlier this year.

Mr Nicholson, who is in his early 30s, typically bypasses Monkhill when travelling home from Leeds, because there is no way he can leave the station in his wheelchair.

Instead, he travels onto Knottingley and then gets a train back in the opposite direction, so he can get off at Platform 2, which he can exit the station from because there's a ramp.

Speaking in February, he said: "This has been going on ever since I started using the trains, which was when I was 18.

"I feel like a second class citizen every time I use the train and it just really upsets me.

"I've paid for my disabled railcard and I always pay my fares on time, and I don't know what I'm getting for my money.

"It's very frustrating having to travel separately from my friends."

Network Rail, who are responsible for the station, has previously said it is committed to improving access to platforms.
Chris From The Gulag wrote:
Mon Nov 04, 2019 6:22 pm
Update on an article posted earlier in this thread :


Hope for disabled passengers as Pontefract Monkhill Station may get step-free access at last,



Image


Pontefract Monkhill Station has no step free access from its Platform 1, resulting in hassle and difficulty for wheelchair users and pram-pushing parents.

Rail bosses have fielded years of criticism about the problem, with one disabled passenger saying this year that the lack of facilities left him feeling "like a second class citizen", as he's forced to make a seven-mile round trip to avoid the station every time he travels between his Pontefract home and Leeds.

Now, Wakefield Council has bid for £1m worth of cash from the Department of Transport to install a lift at Monkhill.

If successful, the local authority says it will put up an extra £1.2m themselves to help fund the venture.

Coun Matthew Morley, the council's portfolio holder for transport, said: "Currently, Monkhill Station is extremely difficult for our disabled residents to access, with many having to travel to Castleford to get a train. This is simply not good enough in 2019.

"This funding and our £1.2million contribution would enable a lift to be added to the existing footbridge, which will be refurbished, allowing much easier access.

"We hope the bid is successful and that we can help improve the lives of our disabled residents and visitors."

However, passengers will have to wait to discover whether or not the bid has been successful, with a decision on that not due until the spring of next year.

Among those affected by the problems is local man Damon Nicholson, whose case was raised by Coun Morley and Pontefract North councillor Lorna Malkin earlier this year.

Mr Nicholson, who is in his early 30s, typically bypasses Monkhill when travelling home from Leeds, because there is no way he can leave the station in his wheelchair.

Instead, he travels onto Knottingley and then gets a train back in the opposite direction, so he can get off at Platform 2, which he can exit the station from because there's a ramp.

Speaking in February, he said: "This has been going on ever since I started using the trains, which was when I was 18.

"I feel like a second class citizen every time I use the train and it just really upsets me.

"I've paid for my disabled railcard and I always pay my fares on time, and I don't know what I'm getting for my money.

"It's very frustrating having to travel separately from my friends."

Network Rail, who are responsible for the station, has previously said it is committed to improving access to platforms.
It depends. Trying to convince airport security workers my caree cannot walk at all was hard. I insisted on a full security pat down instead. Getting onto the plane with his wheelchair was also difficult. Luckily we had booked a row of seats in the middle of the business class cabin and a layover flight. That really saved my sanity.
Just a reminder. Just as adults can have hidden disabilities, so can children. Even small children with mobility problems may get no help until they are of a certain age - of at all. They use prams, and those prams go on buses. Not all children can, or should, be carried. This may be the case more often than people realise, and my daughter has had to contend with people’s indignation and disapproval that she dare take up a space that should go to someone deserving.
My granddaughter has as much right to travel safely in her pushchair (complete with special harness, as others do in their wheelchair.
Yep ... plenty of cases , manor by manor , where less abled ( I do not like the word DISABLED ) citizens ... without visible signs ... suffer discrimination merely by being in the outside world.

A couple of regular at my local food banks have reported " Second class " treatment from the local job centre merely by not having a firm grasp of the English language unless spoken
slowly ... nor ability to type via a computer keyboard when it comes to updating their UC journals.
ladybird wrote:
Mon Nov 11, 2019 5:10 pm
Just a reminder. Just as adults can have hidden disabilities, so can children. Even small children with mobility problems may get no help until they are of a certain age - of at all. They use prams, and those prams go on buses. Not all children can, or should, be carried. This may be the case more often than people realise, and my daughter has had to contend with people’s indignation and disapproval that she dare take up a space that should go to someone deserving.
My granddaughter has as much right to travel safely in her pushchair (complete with special harness, as others do in their wheelchair.
This. All of it.
62 posts