Paralyzed Veterans of America says air travel often dangerous and inhumane for people with disabilities
Thursday, December 2, 2021, 11:23 am
As the busiest travel season of the year kicks off, Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) is sounding the alarm about serious issues people with disabilities still face when traveling by plane. Broken wheelchairs, injuries from improper transfers to and from airline seats, and no access to in-flight restrooms are common problems paralyzed veterans, and others with disabilities, routinely experience when flying.
Air travel remains decades behind public spaces on land, even 35 years after the Air Carrier Access Act mandated changes. PVA has been fighting for accessibility for all people with disabilities for 75 years and is asking the public to help push for change.
On November 17, in conjunction with YourUpdate TV, Charles Brown, the national president of Paralyzed Veterans of America conducted a nationwide media tour to address these issues.
Charles was critically injured two years ago after improperly trained airline personnel dropped him onto the jetbridge during a transfer from his wheelchair to an aisle chair to board the plane. The fall broke his tailbone and caused an infection that he barely survived. He spent months in the hospital recovering. Charles says he and other paralyzed veterans frequently experience horrendous conditions when they fly.
“It is unacceptable that 35 years after the legislation was passed, someone in a wheelchair still can’t access a bathroom on an airplane and risks serious injury or death because airline personnel are not properly trained,” said Brown. “These are basic safety and civil rights issues, and every American should be outraged.”
Accessibility issues affect 65 million Americans with disabilities, which could include someone in your family now or in the future, and this number will grow as the population ages.
To learn more about accessible travel and to support PVA’s fight, visit pva.org/travel