- 17 March 2023
I have been working with local mum, Heather Sturdy, to improve the experience of wheelchair users on First Glasgow services. This follows the refusal of some drivers to permit Heather to use bus services along with her baby and pram. Her plight has previously been featured in the media. Following this I arranged for a site visit to Ruchill (where she stays) by senior First Glasgow officers to meet Heather and discuss this issue. They brought along a bus from their fleet and we had a very constructive discussion about the service Heather and her family should expect.
First Glasgow apologised for the unacceptable experience Heather has had to endure when she has refused entry to a bus with her wheelchair and pram. First Bus accept this should not have happened.
Whilst acknowledging many drivers are kind and helpful, First Glasgow have pledged to do all they can to ensure all their drivers are clear that travellers such as Heather should not only be permitted to travel but also supported. We discussed various other measures that could be introduced and the intention is to have a follow up meeting later in the year.
It is vital that organisations such as First Glasgow hear direct from those with lived experience such as Heather’s and continue to ensure that services are appropriately designed and staff suitably trained. I am very grateful to Heather for sharing her story in an effort to improve the experience of those living with disabilities who rely on public transport.