Disabled YMCA Head traumatized by Jamaica airport incident

(Jamaica Gleaner) Transport Minister Dr. Omar Davies has ordered an investigation into the reported mistreatment of a disabled woman at the Norman Manley International Airport recently.

Sarah Newland-Martin, the Head of the YMCA, was reported as saying that she was subjected to harsh and humiliating treatment at the airport by a policewoman.

The incident reportedly happened on March 19, when she arrived in the island on a connecting flight.

Newland-Martin said she was ordered to remove her specially designed prosthetic legs which she uses to walk.

She added she was unable to properly reattach the legs as the special device to do so was already in her checked luggage.

She noted that this made moving around difficult for her during the 21-hour flight.

Newland-Martin said she has been left traumatised by the ordeal.

This afternoon, Dr. Davies expressed regret at the incident saying that while security personnel are mandated to carry out their functions, it is expected that they would do so in a professional manner, especially when it comes to persons with disabilities.

The transport minister has since asked the Chairman of the Airports Authority of Jamaica to conduct an investigation into the incident and provide him with a report.

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