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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 16154
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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I a man booked to go on a cruise as a holiday of a lifetime

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I a man booked to go on a cruise as a holiday of a lifetime with my son who has muscular dystrophy and uses a wheelchair full time. He is brilliant but physically weak and cannot turn over in bed independently. At home he has a clever electric bed which enables him to manage movement by pressing a remote control.
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: UK UK
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: Leters to Cunard twice
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I have mentioned disability equality legislation. They say on

Good morning. I will assist with your question - be aware this is an email not chat service therefore i maybe delayed in replying.

are you asking if Cunard have to accomodate his needs?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Thank you. I am quite able at communicate with companies over issues like this and could forward previous correspondence?
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
do Cunard have to accommodate my son's bed? Or can they rely on maritime rules to avoid?
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Are you in the U.K.?

Anyone providing a service like this has to make “reasonable adjustments” to cater for people with a disability.

It comes down to whether what you are asking for is a reasonable adjustment.

If you are asking them to provide a bed, then I don’t think it is.

If you are asking them to allow your sons only bed, then it isn’t as unreasonable as asking them to provide a bed but I still think it goes over and above what could reasonably be expected.

If there is a maritime rule which covers this then the maritime rule overrides everything else. I have experience of this.

Sometimes, “reasonable adjustments” are impossible. For example, it would be impossible to alter the workplace to make a building site suitable for anyone in a wheelchair who wanted to be a bricklayer.

Quite a few other things override the Equality Act and “listed buildings” is one of them. If the front entrance is listed, then you cannot put in a wheelchair ramp. I about that because the front entrance to our previous office was in exactly that situation. Our rear office door was not listed but was up 10 steps and putting a ramp in was simply not physically possible.

I fully appreciate that this is the answer you wanted.

Of course, you could always take the matter to court for breach of the Equality Act but it’s not something that I would be hanging my hat on with any hope of being successful. Sorry.

Can I clarify anything else for you?

I am happy to answer any specific points arising from this.

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Thank you.

If you still need any points clarifying, I will still reply because the thread does not close.

Best wishes.


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