A wheelchair user has been left feeling “discriminated” against after a DPD courier allegedly refused to help her take her delivery inside.
Told not to order things if she can’t carry them inside herself, Jessica Sturrock, 47, said she was feeling like a “nuisance” outside her own home by the courier.
She lives with a muscle-wasting disease called type 3 spinal muscular atrophy (SMA).
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The condition affects the use of her legs and as such she is a full-time wheelchair user, but the comments she says she received left her feeling a victim of ableism.
She had ordered two chairs to her Surrey home, in Horley, but they arrived early, turning up on March 2.
But the two large boxes were left on the door while she was home alone and when she asked the driver to help her bring them inside he refused.
Jessica said that she was told by the driver that it wasn’t “company policy” to carry deliveries inside.
DPD has since apologised to her and said that kind of behaviour “isn’t acceptable”.
She told SurreyLive: “I was so shocked, he carried on refusing, saying it wasn’t company policy.
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“I was told in no uncertain terms by him I should ‘plan better’. Did he just not want me to be disabled on the day he was delivering?
“I was made to feel like a nuisance, I was quite upset and angry by it because I didn't think I was asking for too much.
“You’re literally talking about two or three steps. He said I should use a different courier if I wanted something brought into the house.”
She continued: “His next suggestion was that I ask my neighbour to lift it in for me, my neighbour is an 80-year-old woman.
“The thing that really upset me was that he went on to tell me that perhaps I shouldn’t order things if I’m disabled and I can’t get them inside.”
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Explaining the impact the interaction had on her, she continued: “It was really hurtful, I said it’s discriminatory. I was made really angry by his obvious ableism and his lack of help. I was shaking, I was really upset.”
She says she immediately got in touch with DPD after the altercation.
Speaking to SurreyLive in response to a request for comment, a spokesperson for DPD said: “We are very sorry to hear about this.
“We take accessibility very seriously indeed at DPD and have introduced a range of options for parcel recipients to help, including the ‘More Time Needed’ preference in the DPD app, in recognition of the fact that some people need more help at the door.
“While our drivers do an incredible job and regularly go above and beyond for customers, the behaviour here isn’t acceptable.”
The spokesperson concluded: “We wish to apologise to Jessica and can confirm that action will be taken with the driver, and they will receive retraining.”
The Daily Star has approached DPD for further comment.
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