David Gale, a disabled campaigner has hit-out at local transport, which he believes is failing a generation of disabled people. David from Lockerbie took part in a nine month undercover investigation as part of a national survey for the Muscular Dystrophy UK project Traiblazers, a network of 700 young disabled people across the UK. The ‘End of the Line’ report shares disturbing experiences across buses, trains, taxis and the underground.
The UK-wide report finds shocking accounts of abuse and threats from staff and passengers, a disabled passenger hospitalised by the dangerous design of a bus, two –thirds of disabled travellers denied boarding a bus due to the negative attitude of the driver of the public, and a third of disabled people left stranded after taxis refused to pick-up because of their disability.
“Young disabled people in Scotland told alarming stories of feeling trapped and struggling with a transport network that neglects their needs. We heard of issues with taxi drivers unable to pick up disabled people, leaving them stranded and out of options. Others reported being denied entry to buses, despite wheelchair spaces being available.”
Despite all the progress made, public transport still has a long way to go before it is truly compliant with the Equality Act 2010 and other disability discrimination legislation, states the report.
Tanvi Vyas, Trailblazers’ manager said,
“It is disturbing to learn of such shocking experiences across Scotland. The fact that young disabled people are being denied life opportunities by an inaccessible network is a national disgrace. While we recognise and welcome improvements to transport over the years, it is clear from this report that much more needs to be done. Local authorities and transport operators need to engage with charities and ensure that transport works for everyone. No one should be left behind.”
Read the End of the Line report in full here (http://www.mdctrailblazers.org/assets/0000/1411/_End_of_the_line__Report_FINAL.pdf)