Issues around 'Flying' — Scope | Disability forum
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Issues around 'Flying'

MarkatOmniserveJLA Member Posts: 1 Listener
Issues around 'Flying'.

Hello, I am interested to learn of the experiences (good and the bad, poor etc.) that disabled people experience when wanting to 'fly'. Flying is the one area of travel were improvements, while very welcome, seem to not go far enough and many people find air travel impossible for themselves still. The same 'attitude' toward the disabled I find still exists in air travel, that used to be common place on public transport. We have come along way since those dark days of the attitude that disabled people should not be able to travel on public transport, however there is still much work to be done to 'change attitudes' of the same nature, regarding air travel. A lot of help does exist for PRM's (persons with reduced mobility), but as each individual has 'individual circumstances', ignorance of such is still discriminating against people with more severe conditions. This is largely down to attitude. Aircraft manufacturers and designers, as well as the air lines themselves seem to be missing the one vital element when it comes to bringing air travel in to the modern era of the 21st century. YOU, If you are the person who through not fault of their own, are not only denied the 'ability' to fly on many airlines, because of design and layout etc. but also because of bureaucratic red tape and regulation that makes no allowances for change and improvements to be made, quite simply because, 'they don't have to'. If we can do it with buses, train, taxi's and ferries, restaurants, shops, sports venues etc. then air lines should no longer be that one area where they can get away with only doing the bare minimum to show them in a good light, rather than excelling themselves. If they can find space for 2 toilets that make 1 larger one at the back, then why fill the space with 6 extra economy seats or 2 first class seats? Why not a PRM 'Classification' of seating that is both practical and affordable. No one this day & age should have to undergo the indignity of having a full plane load of passengers, watching you being pulled down in an uncomfortable narrow 'aisle chair' then lifted and 'bumped' across 2 seats into a window seat, often with no chance of using the toilet for several hours neither. Most if not all airports now have 'Assistance' which can be pre-booked before travel in both directions, which is a great help. Sadly for an increasing number of people and for differing reasons, even with all the best will in the World, there is also a growing number of people who have resigned themselves to the fact that they can no longer fly at all. Not because of a lack of 'Assistance' to get you through the terminal and onto the aircraft, but because of the aircraft design and the airlines inability to cater for more complexed needs. It's not malicious, it seems more a case of 'not being aware' of the complex issues of many passengers or how the airlines themselves can go that bit further to address them. The have proved that 'travel for all' is not impossible. If you have the money, some one who can not travel in economy can happily travel in business or even first class. Others need just that little bit more, by way of alteration to the facility offered within the seating pod, that transforms to a 'bed'. If they can do these improvements for the attraction of more revenue by providing a premium service for the business client and more well off, then surely they can make 1 or 2 such places available (even convertible to and from disabled to able bodied) on every new aircraft that comes off the production line. Currently, they don't have to, but rather than go down the road of legislation, I think that the airline industry are more receptive to the desire to address these issues, however, they just are not fully aware of them. This is something that they won't be able to do themselves and this is where I believe, that they 'Need our help' to do that. Disabled input from the drawing board is vital to bring air travel into line with all other forms of transport. 



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