London Subway Now Catering to Those With Hidden Ailments

London Subway Now Catering to Those With Hidden Ailments

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After a successful trial run in autumn, transport authorities in London are going to offer special subway badges to people with invisible disabilities starting in spring 2017.

The badges, reading “Please offer me a seat”, were tested by 1,200 different people who were told that they were not obligated to describe what their illness was to fellow passengers. Participants reported that 72% of journeys felt easier as a result of the badge and on 86% of journeys, participants reported feeling more confident when asking for a seat on public transport. 98% of the users said they would absolutely recommend the badge to somebody who would benefit from it.

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Until the badges are successfully released, disabled passengers can use the Transport For London’s Travel Support Card to request special seating from fellow riders or subway personnel.

According to the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), an individual with a disability is a person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; has a record of such an impairment; or is regarded as having such an impairment. Invisible disabilities can include anything from joint pain, chronic dizziness, migraines, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, fibromyalgia, or Lupus.

This is not the first affirmative action UK lawmakers have taken for people suffering from unseen afflictions either – earlier in 2016, Scottish Parliament allowed a 10-year-old girl with Crohn’s Disease to hang her specially designed invisible disability signs on three of their handicap accessible restrooms.

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(Photo by Transport For London)

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