Are wheelchair users the only disabled?

You could read this along side the thread that starts : “If one more person says… “

The current MS Matters has a letter from someone offering the idea that only those in wheelchairs should be allowed to park in disabled bays, and asking for comments. Well here is mine:

This is a totally selfish and narrow-minded approach to disability.

If followed through, it means that anyone who is not in a wheelchair is not disabled (Oh wow, won’t the Government and the DWP like that one) and completely ignores all the other disabilities that need the wider spaces of disabled parking bays.

Yes, we have all seen the tough-looking 30-something jump out of a big car and run (yes, really run) into the shop for his ciggies, and wondered if he was using his grannie’s blue badge.

Rant over! So the next time some well meaning soul says the “Gosh, don’t you look well” bit, smile sweetly, and trot out the put-down you have been practicing all week.
“Oh dear, I am sorry about your eyes. Can they cure the problem?”


my brother in law is in a wheelchair, he can peddle further and last longer than my walking , he deserves his blue badge but by god so do i

Hi Geoff

I read that letter too and thought how narrow minded it was. I don’t have a blue badge but there are days when I could really use one. Just a 2 minute walk (probably 30 seconds for someone without a stick!) means I want to sleep for half a day at the moment but I’m hoping that’s just a short term blip. However I am well aware that that there are some of us who never recover and need the blue badge bays as they may look quite well at the start of a walk but are probably gritting their teeth by the end of a quick trip to the shops.


This is rediculous! Us wheelies do need a wider space to park in, but those with walking sticks, rollators or who simply walk slower and with difficulty certainly do need extra space, plus to be as close to shop doors as possible.

I have almost been mowed down by motorists who haven`t seen me sitting in my chair, at a lower level than walkers.

The very idea is nothing short of scandalous!

Yes, the DWP would really go to town on this one.

luv Pollx


Hi there,

Hubby and I also read that letter and we couldn’t believe it. Now hubby is in a wheelchair pushed by me as his arms are weak to push himself. However in days gone by when he could get by with a tri walker if it had been miles away from the disabled parking bay he wouldn’t have managed that journey. The blue badge should be given when proof of a mobility problem is at hand any genuine person should be able to use that bay no matter in or out of the wheelchair.
If the discrimination starts between disabled about disabled then we have no chance to fight our grounds…

Unity is the key not separation!!!


Hi, I’m a wheelchair user and appreciate the help I get parking etc, but that doesn’t mean other people with mobility issues should be discriminated against. If people have difficulty mobilising they require the same amount of support. Well that’s my penny’s worth. The letter shows no understanding of disability.

It’s a sad indictment on the view of disability - we have enough to deal with without having to deal with letters from nincompoops :-/ Mary

Sorry didn’t mean to put nincompoops - I just got carried away - people have the right to voice their opinon - I guess I’m just a bit upset by the letters suggestion but I don’t want to upset anyone. Mary

When I read that letter I thought that perhaps as a power wheelchair user I need the space a lot less than people who are still struggling on their pins. There’s the space issue of course but in my powerchair I could get from one end of a superstore car park to the other without too much trouble.

As always there are people who break the law (moral as well as statute) and use the spaces illegally but my goodness if people with MS can’t perceive the need in others then we are doomed.

Mary – I don’t think nincompoop was too strong!


I have not read the letter but I totally agree. Only disabled parking slots should be for people in wheelchairs. Only Blue Badges should be given to wheelchair users; the only people who should get DLA are wheelchair users. Euthanasia should be made legal and encouraged for any not a wheelchair user. Any and all drugs should be freely available to wheelchair users; everyone one of those moany lot who just have a little problem walking should pay double; forget about disguised symptoms.

I’m a wheelchair user; I wonder if the person who wrote that letter is a church goer; votes Tory and is a wheelchair user; makes you think dun it!

I think the answer is that there needs to be enough disabled bays so that people with and without wheelchairs are accommodated. I don’t use a wheelchair but I still need my door to be able to fully open in order to get in and out.

My local Morrisons has only 8 disabled parking bays. If I go on a weekday, I’ve got no chance of parking as that’s when the elderly tend to flock to supermarkets. Conversely, there are around 30 parent and child bays which are only ever half full. And a lot of those tend to be used by parents with kids way over pushchair age which, let’s face it, is why they are the wide bays in the first place. It’s especially annoying when there are plently of spaces at the other end of of the car park which are never used, meaning that they could easiy treble the number of disabled parking bays without causing any more inconvenience other than a few more able bodied people haing to walk a further 20 ayrds

And that gets to the heart of the matter.

I need a wide space to get out of the car - and I need a wider space to get back into it. And, no, I am not (yet) in a wheelchair.
I do not have a problem with wider spaces for wheelchair users, provided I can have one that will accomodate my needs.
The comment that I objected to was was that ONLY wheelchair users should be able to use the disabled bays.

If I go to the Royal United Hospital in Bath, the disabled parking area has some extra-wide bays set aside for wheelchairs only.
If I go to the Great Western Hospital in Swindon there is a large number of spaces for the disabled - all wide.
If I go to Odstock Hospital (Salisbury) there are a few roughly normal width disabled bays scattered around (unless you know where one of the staff car-parks is - right near the back entrance to the FES unit).
Yes, the postcode lottery applies to hospitals as well.

The only way I can handle a normal width bay is if it is on the end of a row - then I can get the door open wide. I get the step out (I need the extra height to swing the leg with the dropped foot in) get in, my wife puts the sticks and the step in, and closes the door. She gets out of the way and I back the car out so that she can open her door wide and get in. Yes, she is disabled as well. So now you see why I consider the person who wrote that letter to be selfish. There was no thought for anyone else at all

And like caz said, we do not need the disabled discriminating about the disabled.


Hi jane, I get what you`re saying, about us wheelies being able to get from a to be more easily than those on dodgy legs. But, as i said in my reply to this thread, I have often been almost knocked down, as car drivers do not always see me in my wheelie…a very scary time!

luv Pollx

Hi all me again,

Well after writing my last sermon the other day, today became a reality. Took hubby to a gym for people with MS and not one disabled parking space. I drove miles away in the carpark to find a space but ok I could drive in it but how would I get hubby from the front seat. No room next to his side so he can transfer to his wheelchair. Yes I had to drive to the main door get the wheelchair out of the boot and sit him in it. Leave him outside the building and drive back to the space. What if he was alone and he was the driver…Yes more disabled spaces required and I see the point now of some for wheelchair users who need the side room and disbaled spaces without the big side spce for those with canes sticks etc.


Sorry to nitpick, but stick/cane users often require the big side spaces as well, I know I do. I need to be able to open my door fully in order to get in an out and standard width spaces just don’t allow that. The answer has to be big side spaces for all blue badge holders and car parks need to be encouraged to provide enough for wheelchair and stick users allike.