Disabled woman told to pay £10 for Ikea store assistant to fetch bag of hinges off the shelf

A YOUNG disabled woman from Middlewich was shocked when she was told she would have to pay for a store assistant at Ikea to fetch a packet of hinges from the shelves for her.

Olivia Cole, 23, went to customer services at the store on Gemini Retail Park on Friday to return a set of faulty hinges that came with a new wardrobe she had brought the week before.

After queueing to speak to an advisor Olivia, who suffers from recurring compartment syndrome, asked if someone could fetch the replacement item from the warehouse for her because she was struggling to walk.

But she was told she would have to pay £10.

Her mum, Caroline, said they expected a new packet of hinges to cost around £5 – half the amount the store wanted to charge Olivia for someone to get them off the shelf.

Caroline said: “We made a special 30 mile trip there and Olivia went to customer services on her own.

“She really wants to be independent.

“She said to the assistant, ‘I can’t walk very far, would it be possible for someone to get the packet for me?’ But she was told there was a charge of £10.

“She just came back to me quite upset by it.

“It wasn’t like she wanted them to do all her shopping for her, she just wanted to swap a faulty item. It’s terrible.”

Caroline, from Middlewich, complained to the company on their Facebook page but said Ikea was ‘rude and flippant’ to her.

She added: “I wrote on their Facebook page because I was so annoyed by the way my daughter was treated. All I wanted was an apology and to make sure it doesn’t happen to anyone else, I’m not interested in anything else from them.

“I got some quite rude answers from the company and they said they are not going to change the policy.”

An Ikea spokesperson said: “At Ikea we want to make it easy and convenient for all our customer to shop with us.

“For visitors with disabilities we offer a range of services, including assisted shopping, which can be requested at the customer information desk or by telephoning the store in advance.

“We are sorry to hear that on a recent visit to the Warrington store a customer was not offered the assisted shopping service as expected and we thank the media for bringing this to our attention.

“We are investigating this incident with the store to understand why this happened and welcome the customer to contact us directly so we can discuss her experience with us and apologise for our mistake.”

Source: http://www.middlewichguardian.co.uk/news/15513475.Disabled_woman_told_to_pay___10_for_Ikea_store_assistant_to_fetch_bag_of_hinges_off_the_shelf/

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