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Japan instructs taxi operators not to refuse wheelchair users

taxi in Shinjuku

The Transport Ministry of Japan is instructing taxi drivers not to refuse wheelchair users when they drive accessible taxis, reports NHK.

“Universal design” taxis are larger in size and have a space for wheelchair user so they can easily carry passengers in wheelchair.

The Japan National Assembly of Disabled Peoples’ International conducted a survey last month across the country on the use of such taxis.

It found that among the 120 cases surveyed, there were 32, or 27 percent, in which wheelchair users were refused taxi rides.

It is a violation of the law for cab drivers to refuse a passenger in wheelchair, or the driver does not know how to operate the Accessible Taxi for persons with disabilities. The instruction says such cases are subject to administrative action.

Officials are promoting the introduction of accessible taxis for persons with disabilities ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games.

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