Europe Jun 25, 2012
UK: Campaigners with disabilities are calling for bus and train companies with a poor record on accessibility to be stopped from getting future contracts.
Under Government proposals, 500,000 people could lose their Disability Living Allowance – which many people with disabilities use to pay for taxis, to qualify for a Blue Badge or to rent Motability cars.
Inaccessible transport is named as one of the major barriers to disabled people getting to work and it is thought the changes to benefits will lead to a large increase in people with disabilities being dependent in public transport.
In a protest on June 19 up to 100 people with disabilities gathered together at Abingdon Street bus stop (which is opposite the Houses of Parliament) and rode together to the Confederation of Passenger Transport, which represents the bus industry.
MPs were invited to join them, to see the reality of travelling on public transport as a disabled person.
Abingdon Street bus stop is one of the 40% which is not fully accessible. In this case it is because it is too high for a wheelchair ramp.
Adam Lotun, from Disabled People Against Cuts, has told LBC 97.3 of his own terrible experiences using public transport.
“I too have had to throw my chair off and sort of ‘bumslide’ off trains before or [the same] to get on to trains because the guards, the promised services, are not there.”