Can Airlines Deny Me Passage Just Because I’m Disabled?

airplane_landing_199029I’m getting a lot of questions this week in regards to Mark Smith’s recent incident with American Airlines. Smith is a power-wheelchair-user who was on his way home from Abilities Expo in Southern California, when a gaggle of American Airlines employees boarded the aircraft and informed him that they needed to remove him from the airplane because of “captain’s orders”. So he was transferred to an aisle chair, and taken back to the jet bridge, and was later transported on another American Airlines flight. Continue reading

Don’t Believe Everything Airline Employees Say

I got an e-mail from a reader a few weeks ago that seemed rather odd. Not the e-mail mind you, but rather the subject the reader was addressing. Basically she wrote to tell me that as she was boarding her United flight in Oklahoma City last month, the gate agent informed her that United will soon be rolling out a new policy that will require passengers to reclaim and recheck their wheelchairs at connecting cities, as a condition of gate checking them. Continue reading