SRS‘d by section. If there are any lost letters, that’s because my keyboard hates me.
SRS: White- in which I seem like an advertiser
- Y’know how wheelchair users are always searching for a cup holder to go on their wheelchairs? Check out the Lug Cup Travel Cup Holder. It’s $20 and attaches to the handle of any horizontal bar, can hold up to a 20 oz drink, and is shown attached to a transport wheelchair. Size: 1-1/2”H x 4”W x 4-1/2”D.
- (Warning for flashing light in video) Check out the electronic pillbox! It’s a steep $248, but can remind you about your taking medication. Size: 14”L x 7”W x 2”H.
- Arthritis Pain Relief Gloves. $50, works like compression stockings. Sizes: XS (6”-6-3/4”), S (7”-7-3/4”), M (8”-9”), L (9-1/4”-10-1/2”), XL (10-3/4”-11-1/2”), XXL (11-3/4+).
- Automated Medication Dispenser. $149, gives you your meds when they should be taken. Attaches to the wall.
…I was really bored on the plane, okay? But seriously, check out their Health and Wellness section.
SRS: Yellow- the ableism at the airport and things to remember
This is how I traveled: with cane, carrying a backpack, Zera carrying a backpack and pulling both suitcases. Often I had a drink in hand. I always wore long, black pants and a t-shirt with a jacket or hoodie. I seemed young.
In order to travel to my destination, I took two planes there and back, and had an hour layover each time.
A lot of this stuff may be repetitive or obvious to you, but I’m writing it all down just in case.
- I’m most upset over this. They ask me if I can walk through and stand for 5 seconds. I say yes. They don’t tell me that they won’t provide a chair on the other side, and it takes freaking forever to get my cane back. (Sitting on the floor is not an option for me- I can’t get up from that position.)
- Apparently passports are not valid unless signed, and you can’t sign it there. So lucky I had another form of ID…
- Expect staring and staring and staring.
- Also expect hateful or suspicious looks if you seem ‘young and fit.’ (One person actually asked Zera, “why does such a young person need a cane?” when I wasn’t there.)
- The expressions get even worse if you are sitting in the same area as elderly people- you get glared at and people think you’re not “really” disabled.
On the Plane
- Going through the gate, all I needed was my cane for early boarding. Zera (who is abled) got to come with me.
- The flight attendants are nice enough, but are incredibly unhelpful- they just tell you to go down to the gate and well, that’s it.
- On 2 flights, they had a person in the back to lift the suitcases up for me. (Zera couldn’t lift them.) On 2 flights, they didn’t. The first time, another passenger did it. The second, a flight attendant agreed to lift the suitcases with Zera. We were lucky on that first flight. You wouldn’t believe how many people just passed us by and refused to help. (And the person who helped was a fellow disabled person who wasn’t supposed to lift heavy objects- sorry!)
- Don’t let anyone take your cane. I needed it during the flight, and the attendant had put it up in the overhead storage, under all the luggage. I couldn’t get it out. Stow it on the floor and glare at anyone who complains.
- The bathrooms are hell with a cane. You have to use one hand to press down the water knob, and have the other under the water to wash it. The flow stops if you ease up on the pressure.
- When you need to leave the plane, no matter if you only have a 1 hour layover and this plane is 45 minutes late, you’re expected to board last. Because people who need assistance can go to hell, apparently.
When the Gate is Too Far Away for You
- At the airport, you have to flag the cart people down yourself. No one offers to call them, or lets you know that they even exist.
- You can ask a gate attendant to call for you. They are required to pick you up at the gate or within ~30 feet of it (if they can’t drive all the way up).
- I think you’re expected to give them tips*. The one who drove me was surprised at the $5, so I’m pretty sure they often get $1.
- If they have room, they’ll let your abled friend ride with you.
- The one I met held one of the suitcases for me so it wouldn’t fall out of the cart. They were a really nice person in general, and not in the condescending way.
*That’s right, tips. For providing a service that you need. That should be free. That you couldn’t get around without. Yeah. >:|
Leaving the Secure Area of the Airport
- You have to ask, you may think they’re imaginary, you may have hell finding them, but the mythical things called elevators actually exist. I used one. It was a rare experience finding this elusive creature, and it came quickly when I called it.
- Unfortunately, the myth that these elevators had chairs inside them is false. You must stand or lean against the bars.
I took 4 suitcases back with me, in addition to the 2 carry-ons that Zera and I had. They weighed 20, 30, 30, and 40 pounds. (AKA, too much for Zera to lift safely.)
- Don’t expect help when you’re checking them or getting them off the conveyor belt.
- Don’t expect to be able to get close.
- Or have enough room to lift the stuff off.
Awesome advice for travelling!
Submitting this on behalf of and by request of Anna Johnson of Glens Falls, NY.RAGE.
Background: I am on disability. As such, I use the Medicab service to get to doctor appointments and such. I go to Planned Parenthood for my women’s care services.
Today I called them to set up a ride for tomorrow. I have an appointment at Planned Parenthood because of some ongoing problems, and the nurse who saw me there last week wanted me to see their doctor, who only comes in a few days a week. So, appointment, 10:15 am. Schedule cab ride there and cab ride home. I’ve never had a problem with that before.
I call, and when asked, I say that I need to set up a ride for tomorrow. They ask me where. I say, “Planned Parenthood,” and give the street address.
“I’m sorry, we don’t do calls to Planned Parenthood. We don’t do abortions,” says the guy on the other end.
At that point my jaw hit the floor.
“This is an appointment with a doctor,” I said, steam coming out of my ears.
“What’s the doctor’s name?” he asks.
I tell him.
“I’ll have to check with my supervisor,” he says.
I wait a few moments. He comes back and says, “It’s okay since it’s just a doctor’s appointment.”
I manage to be civil, and finally hang up.
Still. Whiskey. Tango. Fuck. First, that he assumed that I would be having an abortion simply on the grounds that I was going to Planned Parenthood (I live in a not-too-wealthy, somewhat rural area - a lot of women depend on PP for well-woman care). Second, so what if it was an abortion? They should still provide transportation for women who need it!
Asscactus. I have not the words.
I’m posting a question thatIhave for once, in the hopes that someone may have experience in the area.
I’m Canadian, and currently on government disability which covers my rent and some incidentals, along with comping the price of my medications. I’ve been looking into the idea of returning to university as a full-time disabled student (2 courses) but my disability caseworker has informed me I can’t be on disability and attending school, that it has to go through student loans.
Now, I’ve also called around to other government offices and gotten completely different answers. No one seems to think that this area is covered by their department.
I am applying for a student loan, but even if I can get one to cover my living expenses it will still be money I need to pay back at some point, and since I’m taking half the classes most students would a semester the debt for living expenses will pile up.
So, disabled Canadians- if you’ve navigated this area before, I’d really appreciate some tips. I’m already confused and exhausted by other things, and I’m running out of time to go back this fall.
towearoutaday-deactivated201206 asked: Especially for the post about asking for special aids or missing school, can you include things like epilepsy, CP, Parkinson's (yes, younger people can have Parkinson's) since I do a lot of volunteer work and surprisingly those of us with neurological disorders tend to not be as vocal. When I was at LSU, the guy in head of disabilities said, "people with epilepsy never come to ask for accommodations and I don't know why." I would really appreciate more posts geared toward the neuro side.
Thank you for writing in! I’m going to take a look over the next few days and see if we can cover that a bit better. If there’s anything you’d like to see posted in particular (or anyone else) submit & we’ll put it through.
Also, if it takes a bit longer, your patience please - as I wrote the mods are having a bit of a time right now, but I’m going to try & get some resources out that as soon as possible!
Thanks again c: