There are millions of disabled people in the world. Fortunately, many of these people are lucky enough to be able to get around in wheelchairs easily. It may not be the easiest way to get around; however, wheelchairs give a person independence that they thought that they might have lost.
Most public places today are handicap accessible. This means that there are handicapped parking spots, bathrooms that allow room for wheelchairs, and ramps so that wheelchairs to get to various parts of stores and restaurants. Business owners, towns, and cities have implemented these things into their buildings as to not discriminate against those who rely on wheelchairs. Those who need wheelchairs to get around should be able to go to all of the same places that a person who doesn’t need a wheelchair. This is something that a bus driver in Paris understood, and decided to teach his passengers a valuable lesson.
Francois Le Berre
Francois Le Berre is a man from Paris, France who relies on a wheelchair to get around. He has multiple sclerosis, which has weakened his legs to the point where he relies on a wheelchair. Francois likes his independence; therefore, he uses his wheelchair to go out and run errands. When he needs to travel too far from home to get there in his wheelchair alone, he often takes the bus. In most cases, he has no problem getting on and off the bus himself. As soon as the bus drivers see him waiting at the bus stop, they put down the access ramp to allow him to get on the bus. On one particular day, things weren’t this easy for Francois. It wasn’t the bus driver or the ramp that prevented him from getting on the bus; it was the passengers.
The days started out typically for Francois. He and his brother were out running errands together and waited at the bus stop to get home. They were the only ones there waiting, and when the bus pulled up, the driver immediately lowered the ramp to provide access for Francois to get on the bus. While the ramp was lowered, Francois couldn’t get on the bus. The passengers didn’t move so that he could get by to set himself up in the aisle in the back of the bus. The bus driver was furious. Bus driver kicks everyone off to make room for man in wheelchair.
When the bus driver saw that the passengers weren’t moving to allow Francois access to the bus, he put the bus in park and stood up. The turned to the back of the bus to address the passengers and said “Terminus! Everybody off the bus!” He was serious. He wanted every passenger off the bus. People got up slowly and began filing off the bus. Most of them were in shock, and the others were angry that they would need to wait at the bus stop for the next bus to arrive. The bus driver didn’t care. He wanted these insensitive people off his bus.
When everyone got off, Francois and his brother looked at the bus driver also in shock. He told Francois that he and his brother could get on the bus. He then told the rest of the passengers that they could wait for the next one. Francois and his brother boarded the bus, and it took off, leaving the rest of the passengers behind.
Francois and his brother wondered why the bus driver was willing to take such drastic measures for them. The bus driver told Francois that he didn’t have a family member or a friend in a wheelchair. He told them that he believed that it is up to others to help those in wheelchairs. Most people don’t need help; they simply need people to move aside to allow them room. He said that when the passengers didn’t move aside, it infuriated him to the point that he had to do something. He said that these people needed to be taught a lesson in humanity and civility.
Posting the Story
An organization called Accessible Pour Tous, which means Accessibility For All heart the story, and they posted it on Twitter. They wanted people to know how kind the bus driver was to Francois when he needed it the most. The Twitter post went viral. Over 5,000 people shared the post, and over 10,000 expressed their admiration for the bus driver’s good deed.
The post received all positive feedback. People were calling the bus driver a hero, and others congratulated bus driver. Everyone agreed that he did the right thing by kicking everyone off the bus that day.
Fortunately, the bus driver didn’t get any backlash from the bus company. Even though he left passengers on the street, he wasn’t reprimanded. The Twitter post gained so much attention that the bus company was proud of what the driver did for Francois that day.