Landmark disability discrimination decision

Thursday 14 March 2013

People with Disability Australia (PWDA) applaud the decision handed down today by the Federal Court in the case of PWDA member, Julia Haraksin’s three-year battle with Murrays Australia Ltd.

The Court found Murrays Australia had directly discriminated against Ms Haraksin when they refused to accept a booking from her because none of its buses were wheelchair accessible.

PWDA President Craig Wallace said, “We congratulate and thank Julia Haraksin for her efforts in the Federal Court today.  This judgement sets an important precedent for all Australians with a disability and puts all public transport operators on notice. They can’t afford to ignore the Disability Standards. This is a win for all people with disability who are asking for a fair go and the infrastructure to travel to work, visit family and take part in community like any other Australian.”

The Court ruled that Murrays have a legal obligation to comply with the national Disability Standards for Accessible Public Transport 2002 which require all new public transport vehicles to be wheelchair accessible with 25% of transport operator’s existing fleet to be accessible by 2007.

“We should not be forced to take cases to the Federal Court to gain access to basic services which everyone else takes for granted,” said Mr Wallace.

MEDIA: Craig Wallace 0413 135 731
Phone: 02 9370 3100 Toll Free: 1800 422 015 Email: pwd@pwd.org.au
People with Disability Australia Incorporated (PWDA) is a national disability rights and advocacy, non-profit, non-government organisation. We have a cross-disability focus, representing the interests of people with all kinds of disability and our membership is made up of people with disability and organisations mainly constituted by people with disability.
Our vision is of a socially just, accessible and inclusive community, in which the human rights, citizenship, contribution, potential and diversity of all people with disability are respected and celebrated.