I'm heartbroken I have to write this.
On Friday 11th November me and my best friend travelled from Cornwall to London to visit the Pokemon Center.
I had planned this journey for months, from the moment the pop up store was announced.
I became increasingly anxious about the long que times, I'm sure many people did.
I knew that, personally, I would not be able to que for 7-12 hours to get into the store. I would struggle to que for more than 1-3 hours.
I began looking into accessibility.
I was delighted when I found a thread by a member of staff stating that the Pokemon Center had an accessibility que.
To access the que all customers must provide photo ID and one of the following-
-A Personal Independence Payment (PIP) letter
-A Disability Living Allowance (DLA) letter / Attendance Allowance
-'Access to Work Declaration' letter dated within the last three years
-A Blue Badge holder
-A Carer Pass
-An Access Card
I approached the security for the pop-up shop.
I showed the security guard my diagnosis letter and photo ID.
The member of staff took a VERY brief look at my letter and said that it was not acceptable evidence.
I was gobsmacked. It met the criteria set out and I had followed the #PokemoncentreLondon hashtag to ensure...
The security guard explained to me that they were vetting people trying to use the accessibility que more thoroughly and that I would now need to provide a PIP entitlement letter or a doctors letter stating I am unable to que
The board did not say this. I had followed many Twitter users who had been granted entry with similar evidence.
I was heartbroken, I began crying.
I explained to him that I simply couldn't cope
The member of staff was dismissive and unwilling to listen to me.
By this point
I asked to make a complaint to another member of staff who was managing the que. This member of staff was polite and spoke with other staff about what was happening.
I know my disability better than anybody else, I understand my limitations and I followed what the board had stated.
My friend spent a long time, approx 15 minutes speaking with them. She went through the letter with them,
Only for one member of staff to turn around to her and ask why I would want to go into the store in the first place if I had sensory difficulties!
Yes, I'm autistic, yes some things are more difficult.
That does NOT mean I do not get...
One member of staff did say they could 'try' to get me into the accessibility que Saturday morning. Unfortunately, this isn't good enough.
I struggle with uncertainty
I decided that I couldn't go using the standard que and went shopping around London with the support of my friend.
I managed to have a lovely time, this was my treat for my 25th Birthday.
Unfortunately, the pop up store is difficult to contact.
Thank you for reading.
If you disagree with the concept of an accessibility que, I don't know what to tell you.
I will not respond to hateful comments.