The following letter was sent to the Majorca Daily Bulletin, The Director of Airport Authority, The Director of Easyjet, The European MP, The Majorcan Government Director and Age Concern in Spain and England among others.
It is with distress and disgust I have to write this letter of complaint concerning the physical abuse I recieved on arrival at Palma Airport on 16th May 2001 from a member of the airport staff.
The attendant transferred me from the plane by ambilift and lowered me to the ground, for some reason not known to me he roughly snatched my stick that was tucked under my arm and down the inside of my wheelchair, swinging my stick over my right shoulder, hitting me on the side of my head and knocking off my spectacles. I yelped in pain and shouted tranquilo. He did not respond.
On arrival at the carousel he shouted levante, levante at the same time grabbing my hand luggage and yanking it off my knee. As the strap was over my head the bag did not leave, he nearly pulled me out of my wheel chair, I screamed in pain and again shouted tranquilo. This episode was witnessed by some of the other passengers. He then bent down and roughly grabbed my right ankle, snatching my leg off the footrest. I yelled again tranquilo. He hoisted me roughly out of the chair and left, muttering esta tonta. The passengers who had witnessed my rough treatment asked me if I was ok. By this time I was very distressed and in severe pain; I still am. My medical condition is cancer of the bone marrow, osteoporsis and arthritis. These are very painful conditions and this is why I am registered disabled. My sister who was travelling with me understands and speaks Spanish. She challenged him, asking him, who is esta tonta?. After some discussion with my sister the attendant returned and intimated that he had gently lifted the bag over my head. He did not! By this time I was even more distressed and in severe pain. His identity badge was not visible.
The final insult came when my luggage arrived. One of the passengers lifted my case off the carousel to put it on the trolley. I found the bottom corner of my case smashed and the wheel stayed on the carousel.
The case is irreparable, completly ruined. I understand I should have reported the damage before I left the airport but by this time I was too distressed and in too much pain to try to find someone to report it to, even if I was physically able to do so. I just wanted to get to my destination to get some pain relief.
I must say that the treatment of the elderly and disabled passengers at Palma Airport is the worst I have ever come accross. The attendant just dumps you at the carousel and leaves you to fend for yourself. I feel we are being discriminated against.
This is not my first trip to Palma, I usually visit twice a year and this treatment always happens, with the exception of the abuse.