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“She Didn’t Look Disabled”: Ill Passenger Refused Ryanair Assistance at Stansted

23-year-old Ryanair passenger Nathalie Allport-Grantham, who suffers from Ehlers-Danlos syndrome postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome, was initially allegedly refused assistance boarding a Ryanair flight departing from London Stansted Airport (STN) because the employees responsible for providing assistance did not believe that she looked disabled. Allport-Grantham claims to have reserved the necessary assistance ahead of time, and was eventually provided reluctant assistance. A Ryanair spokesperson claimed that the airline is in contact with Allport-Grantham in order to help resolve the issue.

To read more on this story, go to Mirror.co.uk.

[Photo: Shutterstock]

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MimiB22 January 11, 2018

I had a temporary neurological condition that made it difficult for me to walk. I didn't "look" impaired until I fell. Walking sometimes caused me to collapse when my lower extremities just gave out. I could usually stand up straight and take a few steps, but I never knew when my legs would buckle. At home, I used a sit on walker. I didn't want to travel by air, but it was necessary twice during that period. It was much safer for me to be pushed in a wheel chair up to the gate and into the plane. I had a letter from my doctor explaining my situation, but felf my medical condition was no one else's business and didn't want to show it to judgemental strangers. I never actually had to, but I got some rude questions and comments from both chair pushers and gate personnel. I recovered and no longer require assistance, but I remember the indignities of being questioned about an "invisible" impairment and why I needed help getting around the airport and onto and off the plane. There may be a few who take advantage of handicap rules and provisions for their advantage, but am sure the huge majority of people who ask for it, genuinely require assistance.

flyerCO January 11, 2018

In EU, the AIRPORT, NOT the AIRLINE is the one responsible for assistance. The airline simply notifies the airport. As frequent flyer with disability, I wish EU would go back to like the rest of world. The airline has zero control now over the airport's cheapest bidder for service. They can't punish or fire these companies. Omniserve being one of the worst.

nadabrainiac January 9, 2018

"Even though trained professionals say differently, you don't look like a psychopathic serial killer, so, of course I'll go out on a date with you."

Boggie Dog January 7, 2018

Seems the first step to a resolution is a legal complaint against Ryanair. Either Ryanair complied with the law or didn't.

tortellini January 7, 2018

I'm an so angry. When I had (not visible but severe!) health issues, everytime I requested the wheelchair I got unhappy and grunting faces. They thought I was abusing, even other passengers or at the gate. Nobody has to justify why requesting a wheelchair, still I'd be happy if the airline industry would request a medical certificate (but just one time and not for every booking), just to prevent abuse.