Wheelchair Space on buses – what’s next after Court victory?

Photo outside supreme court after victoryMessage from Doug Paulley to Transport for All supporters following his victory at the Supreme Court last month.

I’m Doug Paulley who fought the Supreme Court case about non-disabled people occupying the wheelchair space on buses.

This judgment is a wake-up call to transport providers, to take effective action for all disabled and older people who struggle every day to travel on public transport.

It means that bus drivers must require and pressurise non-disabled people to vacate the wheelchair space if needed by a disabled person. If they don’t, the company has broken the law and you can sue them. My solicitors are already working on a number of cases, which were “stayed” pending the Supreme Court judgment.

Arriva have already changed their Conditions of Carriage to state that non-disabled people are required to move from the wheelchair space when needed by a disabled person. We’ve made this change. Other companies should follow.

This isn’t the end of the story – The Minister for Disabled People and the Department for Transport were waiting for the judgment and promise to act on it.

“My” case would have failed at an early stage without the wonderful support of disabled people such as you. The Equality and Human Rights Commission wouldn’t have funded it, and the Supreme Court wouldn’t have given permission to appeal, without the great public interest you have caused. I hope you are proud of your actions: you’ve shown what a difference you can make when you raise your voices.

I am profoundly grateful for all the support so many disabled people have given the campaign, the case and me personally. I shall never forget it. I’d like to urge you to join Transport for All – we know what a difference campaigning makes.

All the best, and in solidarity,