Firstgroup Plc v Paulley: SC 18 Jan 2017

The claimant wheelchair user alleged discrimination by the bus company. The space reserved for wheelchair users on a bus had been wrongly occupied by a passenger who refused to vacate the space. The claimant said that the bus driver should have obliged that passenger to move, rather than just requesting it.
Held: The appeal was allowed, but to a limited extent. An absolute rule that a non-wheelchair user must vacate the space would be unreasonable: in many circumstances it could be unreasonable to expect a non-wheelchair user to vacate a space, let alone, to get off the bus, even where the space is needed by a wheelchair user. However the company policy that a user should be only asked to vacate the space was not sufficient, and in appropriate circumstances, the user could be asked to relocate within the bus.
Lord Neuberger, President, Lady Hale, Deputy President, Lord Kerr, Lord Clarke, Lord Sumption, Lord Reed, Lord Toulson
[2017] UKSC 4, [2017] WLR(D) 22, [2017] RTR 19, [2017] 1 WLR 423, [2017] 2 All ER 1, [2017] IRLR 258, UKSC 2015/0025
Bailii, WLRD, SC, SC Summary, SC Summary video
Equality Act 2010 20(3) 21 29, Public Service Vehicles (Conduct of Drivers, Inspectors, Conductors and Passengers) Regulations 1990
England and Wales
Appeal fromFirstgroup Plc v Paulley CA 8-Dec-2014
The claimant a wheelchair user had been unable to travel on a bus when a mother had left her sleeping child in a pushchair. The mother said she was unable to fold down the pushchair, and would not move the child. The claimant said that the driver . .
CitedArchibald v Fife Council HL 1-Jul-2004
The claimant was employed as a street sweeper. She suffered injury to her health making it difficult to do her work. She was dismissed, and claimed that being disabled, the employer had not made reasonable adjustments to find alternative work for . .
CitedRoads v Central Trains Ltd CA 5-Nov-2004
The court considered the meaning of the ‘duty to provide a reasonable alternative method’.
Held: The policy of the 1995 Act was to provide access to a service as close as it was reasonable possible to get to the standard offered to the public . .
CitedAkerman-Livingstone v Aster Communities Ltd SC 11-Mar-2015
Appeal about the proper approach of the courts where the defendant to a claim for possession of his home raises a defence of unlawful discrimination, contrary to the Equality Act 2010, by the claimant landlord. In particular, the issue is whether . .
CitedLancaster v TBWA Manchester EAT 17-Feb-2011
DISABILITY DISCRIMINATION – Reasonable adjustments
The Appellant, a senior art director at a marketing and advertising agency, was aged 50 . .
CitedSecretary of State for Work and Pensions v MM and Another CA 4-Dec-2013
The Secretary of State appealed against a ruling made against him as to the processes used for deciding whether a claimant was entitled to employment and support allowance.
Held: It was not within the power of the Upper Tribunal to order the . .
CitedLeeds Teaching Hospital NHS Trust v Foster EAT 14-Jun-2011
EAT Disability Discrimination : Reasonable Adjustments. If there is a real prospect of an adjustment removing a disabled employee’s disadvantage, that would be sufficient to make the adjustment a reasonable one, . .

Cited by:
CitedRowley, Regina (on The Application of) v Minister for The Cabinet Office Admn 28-Jul-2021
Failure to Provide Signers was Discriminatory
The claimant challenged the failure of the respondent to provide sign language interpreters to accompany public service broadcasts during the Covid pandemic. The parties agreed that the steps taken for later broadcasts had satisfied the . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 07 August 2021; Ref: scu.573343