A new trial will see disabled passengers and those with hidden conditions, illnesses and injuries receive a blue badge to alert fellow passengers of their need for a seat on public transport.
The “please offer me a seat” badges, which are similar to the popular Baby on Board badges, are being trialled from next month to help passengers who need a seat, but often have difficulty getting one.
Transport for London (TfL) is recruiting 1,000 people to take part in the European-first six-week trial to assess how successful it is for passengers to use and the reactions of others. They will also be given a card that can be shown to TfL staff.
It follows passenger feedback and TfL research that found people with hidden disabilities and conditions, or those undergoing treatments, can find it difficult to get a seat when they need one – particularly if their need isn’t obvious.
Members of the public have also been developing their own solutions to the problem, such as a ‘cancer on board’ badge. Its creator, James McNaught, will be taking part in the TfL trial.
Alice Mitchell-Pye, Policy and Research Manager, Leonard Cheshire Disability says: `We are very pleased that Transport for London trialling a scheme to help disabled customers, particularly those with hidden conditions, get a seat on the Tube, trains or buses more easily. Many disabled people find it difficult to use public transport, and for people who have an invisible disability, it can be even more challenging when they can’t get a seat. This small act of consideration from Londoners could make a huge difference to disabled people getting around the city and being fully involved in all London has to offer.’
Any customers interested in taking part can get in touch with the research agency 2CV, who are working with TfL on the trial, at email@example.com
For more information on TfL’s new seating card and badge, TfL’s Travel Support card or any other accessibility initiatives visit tfl.gov.uk/accessibility