Begley calls on Translink to remove barriers for those with disability
Following a meeting with the Leonard Cheshire Disability charity, West Tyrone MP Órfhlaith Begley has called on Translink to remove barriers for people in rural communities with a disability:
“Today I met with local man Aaron McKane of the charity who described the difficulty that many people experience travelling on a public bus.
“Translink recommends that service users notify them in advance 24 hours before a person in a wheelchair requires a wheelchair friendly bus.
“However, if you live in a rural area 48 hours notice is required. Translink need to urgently address this disparity between urban and rural areas. We all have a responsibility, particuarly those delivering public services, to ensure that people can live their lives unimpaired by their disability.
“I will attend a meeting with Translink on Friday which has been arranged by Aaron McKane and the Leonard Cheshire Disability which will challenge them on this issue.”
Sinn Féin MLA Michaela Boyle also added,
“I have previously raised this issue with Translink on numerous occasions and they give assurances that if they are contacted 24 hours in advance a bus will be provided, this is not the case in rural areas.
“There is not always a lowered bus available which can fit a wheelchair in rural areas. I have been advised by Translink that often a seat must be removed on the bus to allow the wheelchair on board.
“We must continue to put pressure on Translink to ensure any new capital which they receive for the purpose of upgrading their fleet be prioritised for the services which are not currently 100% accessible for people with a disability.
“Sinn Féin will continue to fully support this campaign to challenge Translink on this policy.”