Menu
A+ A A-

UK Aviation Minister Robert Goodwill praises industry efforts to meet the needs of people with invisible disabilities

Robert Goodwill MPAt the Airport Operators Association annual dinner on Tuesday, UK Aviation Minister Robert Goodwill MP praised airports and airlines making a difference by meeting the needs of people with invisible disabilities.

 

In his keynote speech, Mr Goodwill said that one of the challenges for airports is the sheer diversity of the customer base. 

 

"Airports do a good job of helping physically disabled passengers, but what about people whose disabilities are not immediately noticeable, those with hidden disabilities?," the Aviation Minister said. "For dementia sufferers, air travel can be confusing, and even frightening; crowded terminals. Security checks. And fear of flying itself. All these factors can deter people from travelling."

 

Mr Goodwill said that according to a research conducted by the Civil Aviation Authority, as many as 7 percent of all people could be avoiding air travel because of a hidden disability.

The Aviation Minister pointed out that when the CAA did a review of airports’ and airlines’ current arrangements, they found a wide variation in standards and practices, with some airports described as ‘significantly underprepared’ to meet the needs of people with hidden disabilities.

 

"However, there were some impressive examples of good practice too," Mr Goodwill said. "At Gatwick, for instance, more than 80% of frontline staff have received Dementia Champions and Dementia Friends training. On top of this, the airport’s introduced its own NVQ Level 2 Certificate in dementia care."

 

The Minister also praised measures to help autistic children and their carers put in place by Manchester Airport.easyjet 250th Airbus aircraft in flight

 

Mr Goodwill, who recently met with members of the UK Prime Minister’s Dementia Taskforce said he was told how they’ve been working with the aviation industry on this issue.

 

"I was particularly impressed by the feedback they received from someone who cares for a dementia patient, who praised the outstanding door-to-door service they’d received from EasyJet on a recent trip," Mr Goodwill said. "So there’s lots of great work going on."

 

Mr Goodwill concluded his speech by saying that each airport will find its own solutions as there is no "one size fits all" recipe and urging operators to consult with passengers with dementia and organisations to really understand and respond to their needs.

 

Related Articles

Heightened security levels and flying with a disability

American Airlines sued for losing dementia sufferer

Non-Passenger Escort Passes Make Flying With Dementia Safer

Easyjet First Airline To Join Dementia Friends Initiative

Air Travel Tips Flying With Dementia Checklist

 

Testimonials

"I emailed Reduced Mobility Rights not knowing where my email was going, I received a swift response that anticipated my need to be heard and understood. Thank you for ever."

ROSE CITON

Company Info

 
Reduced Mobility Rights Limited
Registered in England and Wales.
Company No : 07748812
2 Woodberry Grove, London, N12 0DR
Phone: +44.(0)7786.993741
 

 

DONATE

You have the power to make a difference. Donate now to help us make access to air travel easier for everyone.

Amount: 

Newsletter

Cookie Policy

We use cookies to create the best website experience for our readers. By continuing to use our site, you agree to the placement of cookies on your device. Please read our cookie policy to learn more about cookies and learn how to disable them.