Doug Paulley wins First Bus discrimination ruling
The BBC printed an article on a disabled man who has won a legal ruling against the bus company First Bus Group over its wheelchair policy. You may remember I reported on a similar case with Arriva buses earlier this year. It seems that bus companies allow passengers who have already boarded the bus to take priority over disabled people in wheel chairs who want to board the bus.
Disabled people cannot stand up
Let’s be sensible. A baby can be picked up out of the buggy, the buggy can be folded up. A disabled man using a wheelchair cannot get out of his wheelchair, collapse it and then stand up. disabled people are in a wheelchair for a very good reason – they cannot stand up.
The buses operate a first-come-first-serve policy. They do not tell people where they can and where they cannot sit. Notices are put up in the buses saying that certain seats are reserved for disabled people in wheel chairs and people with buggies but anyone can sit in them. That concept is absolutely fine by me.
Where does the problem lie?
- Should people already occupying the space voluntarily move thus making space for a person in a wheelchair?
- Should the bus driver tell people to move from their seat so that there is space for the wheelchair?
- Should the bus company insist that priority be given to people in a wheelchair?
I can see this getting horribly complicated. I think people should take it upon themselves to ensure there is space for a person in a wheelchair on the bus. On the London underground people could see I was disabled so they would volunteer to stand up and give me their seat without being asked. OK I did not have a wheelchair but…
Imagine the outrage if a bus company refused to allow a mother and baby onto the bus because there was not enough room for the buggy?
I don’t think we should blame the bus company. This is definitely a moral dilemma.
Doug wins First Bus discrimination ruling this is a BBC article