Tuesday 3 December marked the official launch of the “please offer me a seat” badge campaign.
Last week, on the International Day of Disabled Persons and during Disability History Month, the “please offer me a seat” campaign was launched at Nottingham City Transport’s Travel Centre. The launch saw representatives from Nottingham City Council, Nottingham City Transport (NCT), Nottingham Express Transit (NET), Disabled Employee Support Network and the Disability Involvement Group join together.
Nottingham City Council are working in partnership with both NCT and NET to offer two different badges to public transport users in the city and wider area. The campaign features two different badges. One badge that says, “please offer me a seat” and another that says, “happy to move for you.”
A member of the Disability Involvement Group, who work in partnership with Nottingham City Council, thought up the concept of the badges after seeing a similar campaign successfully launched in the capital with Transport for London.
The badges have been created to help improve awareness of hidden disabilities. It also aims to encourage public transport users to offer their seats up to people who may need it more than they do. Many disabled public transport users have experienced an unwillingness to offer their seat from other public transport users despite being in visible pain and discomfort. Whilst this may be in part due to naivety or ignorance, many disabled people have experienced hostility towards themselves on public transport. With the introduction of these badges, disabled people can gain confidence on public transport through knowing that other users are more than happy to move for them.
It is also hoped that the badges will increase the confidence of disabled people when it comes to asking other public transport users if they can have their seat. The “happy to move for you” badges will break down the existing barriers for disabled people as they will know who is happy to be approached and that potential confrontation can be removed.
If you want to wear either of the badges, you can pick one up from the Victoria Travel Centre at Victoria Bus Station, NCT’s Travel Centre on South Parade, or NET’s Travel Centre on King Street. If you have both good and bad days with your disability, you are welcome to pick up both of the badges so that on your good days when you may be more mobile, you can offer up your seat to a fellow disabled person who may need the seat a little bit more on that day.