Monday, 22 January 2007

Priority by law or why I need to get a life

I went to Birmingham on Saturday and got very very excited on the train up there.  I frequently have to argue with people about moving their luggage or themselves or their child in the buggy out of the wheelchair space which I've reserved.  On at least one occasion the journey care assistant with me (a member of station staff who helps people with disabilities around the station and on to trains, etc) asked a mother to move her child and when she got off the train she had a go at me saying there would have been room for me and the child.

So when I got onto the train and saw that the wheelchair space was now absolutely plastered in "Wheelchair Space" signs I was pleased.   When I saw that the design had been changed to include instructions on where luggage could be left instead and it now included three other little words beneath the wheelchair space - Priority By Law - I was ecstatic.  So much so that I had to take several photos of this momentous sign that really made my day.  I was important.

Although the fact that we require "priority by law" signs on wheelchair spaces is a whole 'nother story.  After all, TAB's don't have to have that plastered all over their seats on the train do they.

Priority by law

Close up on the wording

And then when we got to Birmingham I finally remembered to take a picture of their disabled toilet sign in the bullring - I've been going there for three or four years now a couple of times a year and I giggle at it every time.  Because unfortunately whilst the shopping centre managers and designers might live in a world where wheelchairs can fly up stairs, I don't.

Luckily for me we then come to the second reason it makes me giggle - the ladies and gents are up the stairs but the disabled toilet is opposite the stairs on that level.

Wheelchair users should climb the stairs

Oh how I wish that one day these things won't make my day and make me want to take photos.  How I wish that one day I can get a life and stop being impressed and ecstatic about things that to TAB's are just little stupid things and not a big deal.

How I wish that day was now.


Christamae said...

I don't think it's silly to be excited about progress with disability rights. I would be psyched, too. From your last few entries it seems like you're doing good which is great. Congrats on the certificate!


Karen said...

I'm like you in this respect Emma. It feels like a victory for wheelchair users but the mind boggles re the toilet. I'm going to try to post an answer to the question youleft ages ago on my carepage today, so keep your eyes open.

Love Karen

Jacqui said...

I don't know whether you need to get a life. I like reading about this type of stuff as although the progress is slow, at least its happening. The sign is so funny, even more so because it isn't true.

Kathryn said...


I can see why seeing some progress would make you really happy. There are signs like the one to the toilet's just below stairways all over a college I have to go to sometimes. I see them and think I should write a letter telling the school that they need to get their act together and update their disabled access. I was incredulous at first, but then it just made me mad. I just thought, what if I needed to bring Ellie to the lieu? I would have to drag her kid kart up a winding flight of stone steps?


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