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A key feature of WACDA's "all of the above" approach is legislative advocacy. We actively advocate on policy and legislation. We seek to shape the future of disability rights in Washington and beyond. See below to learn more about our position on important issues and legislation. 


Few of us, if any, escape the stress of modern air travel. For passengers who use mobility aids, flying can be a uniquely stressful and challenging endeavor. Discriminatory treatment and physical barriers have long made it particularly difficult for passengers who use mobility aids to fly safely and comfortably.  

The Air Carrier Access Act has helped protect air travelers with disabilities from discrimination for over 35 years. In March 2023, Senator Tammy Baldwin reintroduced the Air Carrier Access Amendments Act (S. 545) to “protect and expand the rights of airplane passengers with disabilities, improve air travel safety, and close service gaps that passengers with disabilities frequently encounter in air travel.” The proposed legislation would require the U.S. Access Board to establish enhanced training for airline employees and contractors in assisting travelers in wheelchairs and to outline new actions that airlines must take if a wheelchair becomes damaged or lost during transit. It also grants wronged parties a private right of action to sue negligent airliners, whereas the original Air Carrier Access Act only permitted wronged parties to file a complaint with the Department of Transportation. A House version, H.R. 1267, was introduced at the same time. 

WACDA strongly supports the passage of S. 545 and H.R. 1267. These bills represent a crucial opportunity to expand protections for travelers with disabilities. The initial Air Carrier Access Act made great strides in helping people with disabilities gain equal access to the skies. However, both inherent shortcomings of the original Air Carrier Access Act and the modern realities of travel have made its modification necessary. For instance, the number of wheelchairs lost or destroyed in transit remains staggering. Data from airliners reported by the Department of Transportation shows that, in the first eight months of 2023, almost 1.4% of wheelchairs transported on an airplane were either lost or returned to their user damaged or destroyed. This creates a substantial risk for any passenger with a mobility device that they may be unable to safely and comfortably transport themselves when they reach their destination. 

Current procedures and means of recourse are not sufficient. S. 545/H.R.1267’s proposed new trainings for employees and proposed new procedures will ideally help alleviate these concerns and ensure that air travel remains as safe and accessible as possible for passengers who use mobility aids. Allowing a private cause of action in cases where these trainings fail will help those impacted seek justice and motivate airlines to remain active and invested in accessibility.  

WACDA encourages all supporters of disability rights to contact their Representatives and Senators to express support for this legislation. Contact information for U.S. Senators can be found here. Representatives and their contact information can be found here. A call, letter, or brief email can support improving accessibility for travelers using mobility aids and can help keep this issue at the front of our policymakers' minds.


For residents of Washington, federal legislators can be reached at the following: 


Senator Patty Murray can be reached here

Senator Maria Cantwell can be reached here

Representative Suzan DelBene of Washington's 1st District can be reached here

Representative Rick Larsen of Washington's 2nd District can be reached here

Representative Marie Gluesenkamp Perez of Washington's 3rd District can be reached here

Representative Dan Newhouse of Washington's 4th District can be reached here

Representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington's 5th District can be reached here.

Representative Derek Kilmer of Washington's 6th District can be reached here

Representative Pramila Jayapal of Washington's 7th District can be reached here

Representative Kim Schrier of Washington's 8th District can be reached here

Representative Adam Smith of Washington's 9th District can be reached here


Representative Marilyn Strickland of Washington's 10th District can be reached here

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