Saturday, January 5, 2008

Jay Leno disses Amtrak for charging wheelchair users more

I'm a Jay Leno fan - and am glad to see his show back on the air.

Tonight he won my heart again when he spoke about Amtrak's policy where they've charged wheelchair users more to ride on their trains and how it is wrong. [Amtrak won a lawsuit against a disability group in 2005 where the judge ruled that Amtrak only had to provide one accessible spot for a wheelchair and one spot to store a chair and can charge passengers more when they have to provide additional spaces for wheelchair users. The lawsuit occurred after Amtrak charged some members of the group 200 dollars in addition to the regular ticket price of 90 dollars to travel together and the group sued Amtrak. ]

Go Jay. I wish more people would speak up about issues like this, that are so blatantly wrong.
[visual description: A photo of Jay Leno, who is smiling, is shown. Actually I think he's smirking. He's wearing a dark suit and a tie.]


cindyTN said...

I'm a regular reader and I'm really disappointed that you're not posting as much as you used to. I read your blog through a feed and looked forward to a number of posts a day from you. I know you wrote about changing your blog but I hope you start to write more again.

Ruth said...

Cindy, Thanks for reading my blog . I post as much as I can, but what I write here is just the tip of the iceberg of what I'm doing offline. Right now there are lots of posts I would like to write and lots of things I would like to participate in that I don't have time for. However, I have many excellent blogs in my blog roll that you can check out when my blogging is slower than usual. Also check out the disability carnivals that will lead you to many bloggers!

Courageous Grace said...

Weird. My mother and grandmother made a trip from TX to WA and back last year via Amtrack and got a discounted rate on account of mom's disability. At the time she was only needing her walker so I'm wondering if this problem is specific to wheelchair users?

Ruth said...

It's about providing space . Perhaps her walker fit or folds.

Discounted rates are available for disabled - that's true as it is on other forms of mass transit. But that discount doesn't help much on Amtrak if you're charged that extra 200 fee on top of it( which they applied in the lawsuit-) pretty hefty .

What Amtrak does is charge extra in addition to the normal fares if they have to remove seats. Amtrak claims it's fair since they would charge this for anyone they needed to remove seats for but of course if you can't get out of a wheelchair, that is a problem.