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Disabled people urges public to support their fight for accessible air travel

A woman in a wheelchair being pushed through a busy airport main concourse by an attendant to get to her next gate and catch her flight.
Photo: Marg Johnson

Paralyzed Veterans of America is alerting the public to the challenges people with disabilities commonly face during air travel and asking for support of their efforts to ensure accessible air travel for all. This call to action comes as the busiest travel time of the year begins.

PVA has long been at the forefront of air travel accessibility. Now, the organization calls on Congress to pass legislation requiring accessible design standards that would include a path of travel for people with disabilities onto airplanes and improve enforcement of passenger rights for travelers under the Air Carrier Access Act with a private right of action. Furthermore, we urge airlines to increase training of their personnel and contractors to assist passengers with disabilities during the boarding and deplaning processes.

“The way things are now, flying with a disability is a danger,” said Charles Brown, national senior vice president of Paralyzed Veterans of America. “Earlier this year, I was injured when being transferred from a wheelchair to an aisle chair to board a plane for a cross-country flight. And again, when transferring to my seat. I ended up with a fracture that led to a serious infection, months in the hospital and follow up visits. If there were more standards and training for staff assisting passengers with disabilities, this would not have happened.”

PVA is asking the public to support their fight for equal accessibility for all people by signing up to learn how to help and take action at pva.org/travel.

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