'No improvement' in disabled access at university, Hull student says

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Media caption,

'The door doesn't close so I can't go to the toilet'

A student who complained about the lack of disabled access on a university campus says she is "disheartened" that improvements have still not been made.

Wheelchair-user Sarah-Marie Da Silva said she still cannot access some areas at the University of Hull.

The zoology student highlighted the issue last month with an image of herself on social media sitting in a stairwell during a lecture.

The university's vice-chancellor said she was "really sorry".

Ms Da Silva said she was still forced to use freight lifts and once became trapped in one for 20 minutes when it broke down.

She also said she felt "humiliated" after she had to be carried up a staircase when a stair-lift to her lecture theatre was broken.

'Stuck at the back'

She added that she was still unable to sit with other students during lectures.

"I'm either isolated at the front or I'm stuck at the back by myself," she said.

"I just feel so disheartened that they think it's OK to treat us like this."

Other problems the first-year student highlighted included the doors of accessible toilets not closing properly and emergency alarm cords being at the wrong height.

She said despite repeated appeals to the university nothing had changed.

Image caption,
Ms Da Silva said she had to be carried up a staircase after the stir-lift broke

Vice-chancellor Prof Susan Lea promised the university would "absolutely" sort out the problems over the next month.

"I am personally really sorry that she's had this experience at the University of Hull," she said.

"It is very sad that we are in this situation," Prof Lea added.

"Things have gone wrong here and we need to address them and take urgent action. We are addressing all of these issues that are being raised."

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