Bradford wheelchair users come together to fight unfair taxi charges,

News item posted: 19 June 2017

Last week, Turning Point’s Bradford learning disabilities service teamed up with Keighley and Craven People First to organise an event raising awareness of the unfair extra charges levied by taxi companies in the local area upon wheelchair users. These charges can result in wheelchair user’s paying up to double the normal fare.

These charges can mean that taxis can become prohibitively expensive for people who may struggle to use public transport, or are unable to use a car. This means that those with disabilities are unfairly restricted in their leisure pursuits, their contribution to the local economy, and their participation in local democracy.

The Equalities Act 2010 prevents taxi operators from charging extra for wheelchair users however, the relevant section of the Act has not come into force and has no enactment date, so taxi operators in Bradford have taken advantage of this loophole to levy the extra fees.

The event offered attendees the chance to hear from representatives of Bradford Council and the West Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive, as well as players from the Bradford Bulls rugby league and wheelchair rugby teams.

Caroline Byrne, Project Co-Ordinator at Turning Point Bradford said:

“Taxi journeys are a vital lifeline for many of the people we support, helping them to play a bigger part in their communities, and take advantage of the opportunities that the Bradford area has to offer.

“However, it’s important to remember that  this is not just a problem for people with lifelong conditions, but for anyone who has to use a wheelchair, at any time. That’s why so many different groups have come together to support this campaign.”

Those who wish to show their support can sign a petition calling for an enactment date for the relevant section of the Equalities Act here.