Hey I see loads of disabled members of the dragon squad in the comments but we need more engagement within the TYT community about disabled content about topics that are so important to millions of Americans but get swept under the rug.
Disabled access under the ADA is not enforced there are many buildings and businesses we have no access to including medical care. A study in 2017 found that 1 in 5 doctors offices cannot accommodate a person in a wheelchair. A study this last year by a Harvard Doctor found most doctors are ableist and try to get out of having patients with disabilities.
Airlines lose or damage 20 wheelchairs a day. We are treated as unwanted baggage to get on off planes I know many in the community have had legs broken in the aisle chairs.
I want to see some of these topics brought up especially on unbossed as Nina Turner is talking about universal healthcare the mistreatment of the disabled community is rampant and needs brought to light.
Also on todays show when discussing Fetterman, Nina used otherly abled and differently abled. I appreciate her trying to use inclusive language however those are offensive to many of us. The preferred language is Disabled or Person with a disability. The false positives language is grating on us. That being said it is wheelchair user not wheelchair bound. I have been a paraplegic for 4.5 years I don’t find wheelchair bound offensive but many many many people do especially as there are ambulatory wheelchair users who face that stigma.
I love TYT community I just wanna see the disabled corner speak up and speak out let’s educate some folks.
I also want to say while my own experience is limited to mobility impaired disabilities I recognize hearing and visually and intellectually impaired also face discrimination and difficulty in all the same aspects we do.
I want to give some of you who may not have a wheelchair user in your direct orbit what it is like to fly as a wheelchair user.
Emergency flights, forget it. We have to give 48 hours notice for an aisle chair to load you on the plane (Southwest Airlines is an exception for manual chair users as we can load onto the first row seats from our chair).
Get there early for security checks; while you can skip the extensive line, you are subjected to an invasive search. Which will take longer than routine security checks, and often you will be cycled through multiple security officers as they try to pass you off to someone else. I have sat in an area and had the team forget me when looking for a male to pat me down.
Power chairs and power assistance devices are frequently powered by Lithium batteries which have been approved to fly, but many uninformed airlines workers turn power chair users away, including Representative Jim Langevin (Rhode Island)
Once at the gate, you are strapped into an aisle chair, a human hand truck. Most often, the porters aren’t very familiar with it, it is in disrepair, and you are squeezed through the aisle, your knees and legs being banged into the armrests (which people with paraplegia have brittle bones below injury, making a break easy). Say goodbye to your 5k or more custom chair and hope it’s intact and present at your destination.
Now, at your seat you have to shuffle over the dividers. Take the seat cushion from your wheelchair and place it on the seat you will sit on to avoid developing a pressure ulcer. My cushion is 3 inches tall, which makes me at the wrong height in the plane chair but avoiding a skin ulcer means the discomfort is worth it. Hopefully, you booked a window seat, or people will be climbing over you and thinking you are rude for not getting up to allow them in and out.
Most long-distance flights are supposed to be equipped with an aisle chair in case you need to use the Lavatory during the flight. However, many don’t have the chair, and if they do, it will be the attendant’s first use. They will treat you as an inconvenience. There will be a spectacle as they get you in the chair. The other people in your row have to stand back in the aisle. as you transfer, you are pushed inside the lavatory with your back to the door no room beyond the aisle chair. An attendant will be waiting outside the door for you to do your business and bring you back to your seat. Short flights don’t have an aisle chair. Many chair users have been advised to dehydrate themselves (obviously bad for your health, but especially if you catheterize, it Leads to bladder infections) or wear a diaper (oh and then sit in a soiled diaper for hours?)
Plane arrives at your destination, you will be the last person off the plane, and then when you finally get to the gate. Still strapped to a human truck like Hannibal, you don’t see your wheelchair, or if you do see your chair, the attendant will ask, “did it have a backrest when you boarded?” Or “Do you think you can still use it with the wheels bent like that?” I cannot stress enough how commonplace broken or lost mobility devices are with air travel.
It is now time to argue with the baggage claim desk about the state of your chair. (In my experience, the flight crew is friendly and understanding about the situation, and baggage claim will now make it somehow your fault for being disabled) the whole time you fight with baggage control, you are in one of the airport stroller chairs, unable to propel yourself. (Last Halloween, Disabled Rights Activist Engracia Figueroa, a person with quadriplegia, died from pressure sores because of being left in one of these chairs for hours and was unable to do pressure relief in such an awkward chair)
After hours of back and forth of arguing with baggage claim folks, you will get a rental chair that is in no way fitted to you and will be bulky, cumbersome, and difficult to maneuver. Manual chair users will get a hospital chair which again is not made to accommodate the cushion you need, so the wheels won’t be easy to use because you are sat too high with footrests sticking out way in front of the chair, so you won’t be able to reach the counter in front of you but will have to parallel park next to it and awkwardly do what you need. Not to mention the turn radius is obnoxious. And there isn’t a foot strap, so your legs continually fall off and drag. Also, it will be an 18 or 20 inch wide seat, so you are wider than you need to be, again making it difficult to maneuver and forget about getting through 30-inch interior doors because an 18-inch seat pan after you add wheels and handrims means you are the 28 inches of clearance those doors allow. Power chair users will be given the rental shop’s single loaner power chair, which is falling apart and again not made for the individual, and the battery won’t be able to hold a charge.
A repair will take weeks to months while you are stuck in the improper loaner chair, or a replacement will take months to a year. You will be forced to go through vendors that the airline works with as opposed to your preferred supplier. And it will be back and forth of hours-long phone calls and emails while you try to take back the independence you are accustomed to in a chair that is like weighted chains on your ankles pulling you under instead of wings lifting you.
Thank you for the reminder to keep disability-based discrimination issues at the forefront. I appreciate the link as well. It gave me something to do to help. I wish I could do more. I’m not 100 on service dog etiquette, so I hope it’s not wrong to say that is an adorable dog.
Aww you can definitely tell the person their service dog is handsome. However never pet or distract a working dog. The owner will let you know if it is ok to do so, but talking to the animal, petting the animal or feeding the animal are all things to avoid. And his name is Lou Ferrigno Jr and he is a very handsome good boy! Thank you for reading through and using the link!