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Disability Rights UK responds to accessible railways report

25 February 2022

The Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee has submitted a new report to the Department for Transport on railway accessibility.

The report considers what a fully accessible railway means, and accepts ‘that it is a challenging concept for two reasons: it is difficult to envisage a railway where there are not, at least, some operational and physical characteristics that represent a barrier to some Disabled people, and full accessibility is a moving target in the sense that technology, our understanding of disability and, indeed, of accessibility is constantly evolving.’

DR UK Rail Policy Adviser Stephen Brookes said: “This report pulls no punches by saying that disability access is viewed as an expensive add-on within the industry, as opposed to being seen an opportunity to increase independent living for disabled people, and to develop increased revenue from many people who have been historically side-lined by the industry.

“We are clear that the much needed changes have to acknowledge the importance of the creation and full inclusion of pan-Disabled access panels who are willing to share their life experiences, all of which should be more widely and consistently used in all aspects of rail planning and staff training.”