Breaking Barriers: Healthy Minds Forum & Accessible Calderdale Unite to Improve Transport Accessibility
Disabled participants shared how they often are made to feel like a burden while taking public transport and have even received abuse from other passengers for using priority seats. Others shared how the long term stress of using public transport meant they just didn’t have the emotional capacity to use it anymore; they are staying at home instead, increasing social isolation. Others are forced to pay for taxis, deepening the economic inequality that they already face.
We then dreamed about our ideal accessible world - creating comic strips of day to day journeys in which all the barriers we normally experience are solved with innovative solutions. Ideas ranged from electric charging points for mobility scooters in public places, to trained, friendly staff who are helpful with ramps and organising seating.
Ideas and experiences shared will be taken back to the mental health inequalities action group at the Healthy Minds Forum, to inform our next steps on action we need to take to improve mental health for everyone.
Disability activism and mental health movements have always worked in solidarity. The Forum looks forward to working with Accessible Calderdale more in the future to put pressure on policy makers to ensure a world that is accessible for all, and where nobody is socially isolated.
Written by Georgia, Membership & Engagement Coordinator