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Suburban train Proastikos does not allow access to people with disabilities

Without any explanation the management of suburban train Proastiakos announced that people with disabilities will have to access to these trains as of February 19, 2024.

The managing company “Hellenic Train” made the announcement not through its official website and social media accounts but through wall stickers. Next to disability wheelchairs the Proastiakos added that also “no bicycles etc” will have access to the trains “until further notice.”

Lawyer, Aleka Zorbalas, a woman with mobility issues revealed in her post on social media that the suburban station informs with a rough wall sticker that it does not accept disabled strollers, bicycles etc, without further clarifications, for which it refers to the publishing houses.

“For the Suburban train to not allow the transportation of people in wheelchairs exceeds all limits of cynicism, cruelty and inhumanity” she stressed among others, adding that “They deprive you of transportation. They deprive you of the trip. If you don’t have your own car and people to transport you. If you don’t have money for a taxi. Only those who has and possesses will live, survive. Let the rest cut their throats (…)”.

The reason

According to newspaper “Rizospastis” report, the company did not even bother to inform and explain neither on its website or nor on its social media accounts.

According to the report, “the reason for this shameful exclusion of the disabled from the suburban train routes is the lack of rolling stock.”

The report noted that “the trains that until now ran the suburban route Thessaloniki – Larissa have been reduced due to a lack of spare parts in recent years.”

“Therefore, the suburban trains that allow access to the disabled, are designed to allow faster boarding and alighting of the public, unlike the older ones that have stairs. So the most modern ones were transferred to another line that better serves the profitability of the business, despite the fact that people with special needs are left without access.”

More specifically, these modern trains have been transferred from northern  Greece to Attica, since the company decided that it is more advantageous and profitable to relocate them there, so in the suburban area Thessaloniki – Larisa, the routes are run with rolling stock that has steps that do allow access to people with disabilities,” rizospastis stressed news website tvxs.gr reported.

It should be recalled that early January, the Transport Ministry allowed drivers of public transport means to refuse boarding to disabled people on public transport if the infrastructure is not suitable.

Instead of banning public transport means when they have no infrastructure for people with disabilities, the Ministry quick to form a legislation …

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3 comments

  1. But the people who decide which rolling stock is available is the train company, as is clear in the article. By passing a law allowing denied access to disabled people if there is “no suitable rolling stock” the government are saying that train companies are completely free to discriminate against disabled people. Are there no anti-discrimination laws in Greece?

    Yet another example of the government acting in the interests of the rich and powerful and against the interests of the people who they claim to represent. Democracy is a myth.

  2. And the government allows this,do we really want to live in a country that has such cruel governments?

  3. I think they must be breaking European law.disabled people have rights under European law and one of them must be the right to put themselves and their wheelchairs on trains,great to put them the train operators through the European Courts of Justice.