The International Air Transport Association (IATA) 75th Annual General Meeting (AGM) has unanimously approved a resolution to improve the air travel experience for the estimated one billion people living with disabilities worldwide.

Presided by Walter Cho, chairman and CEO of Korean Air and Annual General Meeting (AGM) president, the resolution confirms the commitment of airlines to ensure that passengers with disabilities have access to “safe, reliable and dignified travel”, and calls upon governments harmonise national legislation and regulations which otherwise could create a patchwork of confusing or even contradictory requirements for passengers and airlines.

The resolution calls upon governments to make use of the IATA Core Principles on passengers with disabilities in the development of national legislation and policies. One such core principle states that airline and aviation service staff should be supported by their employers in acquiring and maintaining the proper knowledge, skills and abilities to provide passengers with disabilities a seamless and dignified travel experience

“Airlines were ahead of their time when, 50 years ago, we set out standards to ensure passengers with disabilities had access to air travel. But now we need to go further. The numbers of persons with disabilities travelling by air are set to increase significantly as populations expand and grow older. We applaud the UN Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities. With today’s resolution the industry is committed to ensure that passengers living with disability can travel safely and with dignity,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s director general and CEO.

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