Lords recommend closing pubs without disabled facilities in select committee report reviewing Equality Act of 2010

 
Francesca Washtell
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The House of Lords select committee report recommended closing pubs and other buildings that did not provide adequate disabled facilities (Source: Getty)

A House of Lords report has recommended that pubs, restaurants and clubs that do not provide disabled toilets and and disabled-friendly facilities should be shut down by local councils.

The select committee report reviewing the Equality Act of 2010 and Disability said disabled people are being "let down" by inadequate facilities in transport, such as taxis, and public buildings.

The report found laws "designed to protect disabled people against disability discrimination simply aren’t working in practice, and that employers, service providers and public are still not adapting to their needs".

"Access to public buildings remains an unnecessary challenge to disabled people. Public authorities can easily side-step their legal obligations to disabled people, and recent changes in the courts have led to disabled people finding it harder to fight discrimination," the committee said in the report.

Baroness Deech, the committee's chairman, said the government bears "ultimate responsibility" for enabling disabled people to "participate in society on equal terms".

However, the British Beer and Pub Association has disagreed with the proposals for local councils to crackdown on building closures.

"Shutting pubs isn’t the answer, but we should all be encouraging pubs to be as accessible as possible. A lot of simple modifications can be made, and staff training is also key," a spokesman from the British Beer and Pub Association said.

"Keeping the customer informed is very important, which is why we urge pubs to have an access statement so that customers can see in advance what facilities are on hand. There is a lot more information in our Access Guide, "An Open Welcome" on our website, which we are currently updating with the latest advice and guidance."

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