The UK Civil Aviation Authority is consulting on a new regulatory framework, designed to ensure passengers with hidden disabilities get the assistance they need from airlines. 

The new set of proposed guidelines sets out the CAA's view of what EU-registered airlines need to do to comply with the legal regulations, which entitle anyone with a disability, including those with hidden disabilities, to have assistance when travelling by air. 

Hidden disabilities include, but are not limited to, dementia, autism, learning disabilities, anxiety issues, mental health impairments and hearing loss.

The CAA's new framework provides guidance on: Information and communication prior to travel; boarding and on-board the aircraft; staff training; and priority following disruption. 

In preparing this framework, the CAA has met with a number of leading organisations representing the interests of people with hidden disabilities, including the National Autistic Society, the Alzheimer's Society, Epilepsy Action, Mental Health Working Group, RNIB and Action for Hearing Loss, as well as attending meetings of Prime Minister's Dementia Challenge Air Transport Task and Finish Dementia Group. In addition, we have consulted our colleagues in the CAA's Consumer Panel. 

The consultation, aimed at passengers, charities, airlines, airports and other industry and government stakeholders, will run from Tuesday November 21, for 10 weeks, to February 2, 2018. 

To read the consultation and submit feedback go to: https://consultations.caa.co.uk/cmg/guidance-for-airlines-on-assisting-people-with-hid

Last year the CAA launched a similar framework, to improve assistance for passengers with hidden disabilities at airports.  We will be reporting on how well UK airports have implement those guidelines early next year. 

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For further information contact the CAA Press Office on: 0207 453 6030 or press.office@caa.co.uk
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