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Not Disabled Enough. Apparently.

(59 Posts)
Peanutbutteroneverything Tue 30-May-17 14:38:15

I am sure that I will get flamed for this, but genuine AIBU as it has really irritated me.

DS 5 has autism & ADHD (includes sensory issues etc.)

We sometimes go to soft play in our local town. We had an annual membership that has just run out, so I looked at the renewal options. I saw at the desk they mentioned a concession for disabled visitors. DS receives DLA and usually gets a concession at the various places we go.

I asked the lady on the desk and she said she'd grab the duty manager to sort it out. Duty manager, "what's his disability?" I explained and she said. "We don't consider that to be a disability so he can't get the concession." I made a face and she went on to say, "Concessions are only for people in a wheel chair." I started to say that disabilities come in many forms!

"Your son can use the facilities." And then she walked away and I sort of felt a bit confused

Whilst it is true that my son uses 'some' of the facilities, he needs a lot of additional support from me, we often only stay a very short period of time because if it gets too busy/noisy DS gets overwhelmed and anxious and we have to make a hasty exit. Some days he walks in, freaks out and we leave before venturing in!

So AIBU to be annoyed at their attitude? To be honest, it isn't about the concession itself, more the principle of the matter I suppose. Then I got to thinking of the other places I take DS too, he can still 'access' whatever it is in his own way, even though he gets a concession. Does this mean that if he can do that then he shouldn't get it?

KatnissMellark Tue 30-May-17 14:42:30

Wow. Surely they don't get to decide what's a disability and what isn't?!? I feel like this should be reported but I'm not sure who standards?

showergel1 Tue 30-May-17 14:42:34

It's not up to them who is and isn't disabled.

ArchieStar Tue 30-May-17 14:43:45

Wow. To receive DLA you must be classed as disabled by the government. If you're on Facebook you could leave a review or tweet the company and say you're not happy?

The way your OP reads is that they're happy to take money off wheelchair users as they will only be able to use certain parts, whereas someone like your DC who does not have mobility issues but can still suffer with sensory issues has to pay full price coz he isn't disabled enough. Wrong!!!!

Pollydonia Tue 30-May-17 14:45:55

Is that even legal? I'd be taking this further if I where you, op.

metspengler Tue 30-May-17 14:47:59

It is up to them who they subsidize, however.

They need to change their material to read "wheelchair users" unless they particularly like their customers having the experience of a "duty manager" at a soft play telling people what they don't consider a disability.

Disabled does not mean "exclusive to wheelchair users". If they mean that, that is what they should say - honestly parents of disabled children have enough to deal with, without having to endure a spot diagnosis by Dr Thicko because their company can't use English properly.

mayoli Tue 30-May-17 14:48:19

Only disabled if they use a wheelchair??? No. Definetely complain to trading standards, and contact the manager/company if poss. That's disgusting, and also illegal, I'm sorry that happened OP

ALemonyPea Tue 30-May-17 14:49:42

That's an awful attitude! Was she the manager?

Do they have a FB page? I'd be tempted to put something on there questioning it.

JessicaEccles Tue 30-May-17 14:50:03

OmFG. I have had this before- but rarely so blatantly and so wrong. You need to make a Big Complaint about this. It's incredible in this day and age someone could still come out with this shite.

MrsJayy Tue 30-May-17 14:51:43

You need to complain if this is their stance they need to change their consession to wheelchair user only btw they cant do that either because it is ilegal

TalkingSheds Tue 30-May-17 14:52:12

YANBU they are BU. Like you say, your ds struggles in other ways, sensory overload being one. I would definitely be taking this further, they have advertised this disability discount, your son has DLA, he should really be able to claim this concession too.

MaisyPops Tue 30-May-17 14:53:38

Sounds like the person you spoke to is very poorly informed.

I would contact management and ask them what forms of identification are required for the concession rate.

But, I wouldn't have a go at/about the person you spoke to. It sounds like poor training rather than them being awful.

Once you have clarification on what 'counts' then suggest more staff training

VolunteerAsTribute Tue 30-May-17 14:58:56

Surely a discount is at the manager's discretion and not a legal entitlement.

It's a business. If you don't like it, don't go.

Can anyone show it's illegal as opposed to simply saying it is?

MaisyPops Tue 30-May-17 15:01:57

I'm no expert volunteer But if they are saying a disability reduction exists then there'll be guidelines on what 'counts'. E.g. a friend of mine has a child with profound special needs so they have a pass (from the council I think) which gets them in places at a reduced rate. It's great for them because they often can't do all day.

They can't have a discount for disability where the criteria is 'does the person on the counter think you look disabled enough'.

MrsJayy Tue 30-May-17 15:07:00

If you are advertising a disability concession for a bussiness you can not pick and choose a disability to suit to give concession for.

AwaywiththePixies27 Tue 30-May-17 15:07:11

Duty manager, "what's his disability?" I explained and she said. "We don't consider that to be a disability so he can't get the concession." I made a face and she went on to say, "Concessions are only for people in a wheel chair." I started to say that disabilities come in many forms

Wow. What a completely ignorant and uninformed bitch she was.

If it's a chain OP is their a HQ you can address this too?

Benedikte2 Tue 30-May-17 15:08:17

I'd complain to the management in writing. The Duty Manager may not be properly trained. Explain in your letter that your DS can get only limited use of the facilities for the reasons you set out here. Most organisations accept the definitions of disability set out in statute and regulations and don't formulate their own ad hoc version.

cdtaylornats Tue 30-May-17 15:08:54

By facilities I suspect he meant toilets.

If you are advertising a disability concession for a bussiness you can not pick and choose a disability to suit to give concession for.

You absolutely can.

AwaywiththePixies27 Tue 30-May-17 15:10:25

Volunteer if you're advertising a concession for disabilities you can't really pick and choose what you think constitutes a disability.

VolunteerAsTribute Tue 30-May-17 15:10:48


It's fair enough to not be an expert, but no one can offer any proof that anything untoward has happened beyond their opinion.

Opinion's are like arseholes remember.

That isn't meant to be offensive, but people should be clear as to what is an opinion and what is fact.

trulybadlydeeply Tue 30-May-17 15:11:59

Well if your son receives DLA, then he is classed as disabled.

In your position I would email/write to the manager, explain what happened, and ask for a copy of their policy on their concessions for disabled people. Check on their website first to see if it is there, though.

Explain to them how your son's disabilities affect him, and his use of the facilities, and if it is the case that it is a concession for wheelchair users, rather than for disabled people in general, then obviously that is their decision, but point out that this rather very narrow view of disability sidelines a substantial number of people with significant and complex disabilities.

AwaywiththePixies27 Tue 30-May-17 15:12:22

You absolutely can.

How and why? My DM is disabled. Can't walk more than a few yards without a triwalker thing. By the woman in the OPs logic she wouldn't be entitled to a concession because she's not in a wheelchair.

MrsJayy Tue 30-May-17 15:14:00

The soft play need to say our play area is not suitible for wheelchair users <offer discount> they can't say they need DLA as proof then decide not to give concession

MaisyPops Tue 30-May-17 15:14:37

OP said that they asked about disability concession and were told that the disability doesn't count. Legal or not, that is shockingly poor service.

My understanding comes from my friend who had a pass for her child because of disability. That combined with the fact there's disability descriptions in law makes me think it has to be more than just 'no you don't look it'

OP is right to seek clarification. Otherwise kids could be eligible depending on who is on the serving desk.

FoofFighter Tue 30-May-17 15:16:07

Direct them to the DDA disability discrimination act

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