Jetstar Bans Child with Disability From Boarding With Stroller

Jul 14, 2011
Tagged with:

A New Zealand family, flying with a child  requested to bring their stroller on the flight, but was denied. Theo, who is 2 years old has Down’s syndrome, and suffers from a rare condition, non-neurogenic neurogenic bladder, which can lead to renal failure. The family of 4 taking a short flight (on Jetstar), only had three carry-on bags for the trip, but were shocked when told Theo’s stroller could not be carried on as there was no room.

The family was told at the gate that the stroller, would not be allowed on the cabin, despite explaining that the stroller is needed their disabled son. And also, explaining that the stroller is able to be folded down to the size of a large umbrella and weighs about 17 lbs. But, when the family was seated, they were shocked to see a crew member walking past them carrying a large green bag that was placed under one of the back seats — it turned out to be a musical instrument for another passenger. The family wanted to know why their stroller which can be folded down to a large umbrella was denied, but yet flight attendants found room for a musical instrument.

To make matters worse, when the family arrived at their destination, they discovered their stroller had been damaged in transit. Then, during their final flight back, the cabin being only half-full were stopped again from taking the stroller on board. Mrs. Scott explains that the staff had treated them terribly and seemed to have no sympathy. “It’s almost like you’re having to justify your son’s disability to them,” she said.

A spokeswoman for Jetstar, which has faced criticism of its customer service in the past, said the airline sincerely apologized to the Scott family for the inconvenience and had sent them four $50 vouchers. It would also cover the cost to repair or replace the stroller.

Author: Jenny Carlton