Are you familiar with this similar dreadful scenario? You use a wheelchair but you gotta get somewhere, so you park on the curb patiently waiting for a cab to stop. But you wait, you wait and you wait some more, realizing no cabs are interested in stopping. And the reason? Your wheelchair.
All cabbies see when they see us? A lot of work. It’s blatant discrimination and it happens all around the globe, even sadly in London where nearly every cab is wheelchair accessible. Here are three videos highlighting this serious issue. Get ready to be appalled.
Video #1: Paralyzed Brooklyn music producer finally hails cab after 1 hour
Scotty Hard is a music producer from Brooklyn, New York and he’s only been paralyzed since 2008. A T5 paraplegic, he was injured when he was t-boned while driving home from the studio, and since his injury he’s had a rude awakening to the world of hailing a cab from a wheelchair.
In this video from Vocativ, you get to watch as he attempts to hail a cab. It takes him over an hour and it’s a dangerous adventure, from weaving between idling cars so he can be seen by cabs to checking out the subway for accessible station, Scotty finally snags a ride.
Video #2: Disabled UK comedian demonstrates how bad it can be
Laurence Clark, a comedian with cerebral palsy from the United Kingdom, loves to poke fun at social issues. In this video, he shows just how bad it can be for a wheelchair-user trying to hail a cab in the UK.
Even despite wearing a t-shirt that reads, “I need a taxi” and an able-bodied friend holding a sign above his head that says, “He needs a taxi,” no taxis stop until an able-bodied man finally comes in to help hail. Yup it’s that bad.
Video #3: Higher fares for disabled passengers? It’s legal in Tasmania
And a ridiculous law exists in Tasmania, Australia where it’s completely legal for cabbies to charge disabled passengers an extra dollar per fare. While disabled residents of Tasmania can get reimbursed for their cab fares by the government, what if you’re disabled and visiting Tasmania?
The reason for the higher fare? Helping us is ‘more work’ even if a cabby gets us to our desired location in the normal time. This may be enough to make most wheelchair-users never want to visit this part of the world despite local disabled residents trying to get the law changed. Will they be successful?
While there are a handful of cab drivers who don’t mind taking passengers who use wheelchairs, most unfortunately fall into the other category. Please, have your wits about you the next time you’re trying to get a cab, and don’t let their rudeness surprise you.
What do you do when cab after cab ignores you?
Watch the videos!