Former Labour home secretary David Blunkett is to chair an assisted travel advisory board relaunched by EasyJet.
Two new members have been appointed to the independent advisory group for the budget carrier.
The airline carries around 2,000 passengers each day across its network who require special assistance – more than 760,000 this year.
The group was originally established in 2012 as the special assistance advisory group to provide independent guidance and strategic advice on the evolving needs of passengers requiring special assistance.
New members of the board are Josh Wintersgill, a British entrepreneur, aspiring Paralympian and inventor of the easyTravelseat which enables wheelchair users to transfer with more safety in and out of their wheelchairs to an aircraft seat; and Emily Yates, an accessibility consultant and broadcaster who advises on disability issues.
They join long-standing board members, aviation accessibility policy expert Roberto Castiglioni and Ann Frye, an international specialist in meeting the transport needs of a diverse range of travellers requiring assistance.
Blunkett, now a member of the House of Lords, said: “I am pleased to chair the reconstitution of the advisory board, welcome the new members who will provide invaluable advice and have the continued support of the easyJet team and its leadership.
“The board’s members will work hard to help to continue to transform the passenger experience, and support the airline in its commitment to bring about continuous improvement.”
The airline’s customer experience director Antonio Shabbir said: “It’s our mission to make travel easy and accessible, no matter what our customers’ needs and so I’m delighted to be relaunching our advisory board, which has played a key role in helping us to drive improvements in accessibility over the years and we are grateful for the support of all members both existing and new to continue this important work.”
Yates added: “I’m pleased to be working with EasyJet and others with personal and professional lived experience to build positive and sustained change from the inside out: operationally, digitally and within the built environment.”
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