Getting on and off of an aircraft are problematic in too many situations.
Recently, I was asked if I could board last, since there was no one to help load me in the plane. Understandable. Then, this gentleman comes to help, and he asks another flight attendant to help him, as he was by himself, and I require a complete lift. By then, another female employee comes to help. So, the first gentleman who came to help instructs the female that when the two gentlemen lift me, she should move my chair and replace it with the aisle chair. It was clear to me not any one of these three individuals had any clue what needed to happen. Assistance should be provided by knowledgeable individuals! Another lawsuit was waiting to happen! Educate employees! All of them should have at the very least a cheat sheet they can refer to if they are tasked with the care of another individual!
On another flight, as I arrive to DC after a VERY long flight from LAX late at night in the evening. I wait, and wait, and wait for assistance to get off the plane, as I cannot walk. The flight attendants were EXTREMELY helpful, as we (my service animal) were cared for to the upmost. When these contractors came to assist me, they could barely speak English. I asked them to move me forward, and one of them said “What?” I said it louder. Then he proceeded to say to me “You don’t have to yell.” He still didn’t move me forward, so the other person had to tell him in his native tongue to move me forward. They didn’t know how to transfer from the aisle chair to my wheelchair. I had to give him step by step instructions. Even then, he hastily moved 1/2 my body without collaborating with his partner–what a mess!! To top it off, I asked him to gather my items from the chair, and he left my Theracane! There needs to be training! And English speaking people to assist, as we ALL have different and unique needs.”Sgt. Jacqueline Baskett, CA