Most of the 577 deputies elected on Sunday entered the Palais Bourbon on Tuesday. Among them, Sébastien Peytavie, elected in the 4th constituency of Dordogne, is the first elected in a wheelchair to enter the National Assembly. The MP does not want to be just a standard bearer for people with disabilities during his term of office.
It’s a suit jacket on his knees and sleeves rolled up that Sébastien Peytavie pushes his chair into the Salle des Quatre Colonnes. The new 40-year-old deputy ends his first day in the National Assembly. Not without a touch of pride. “It’s an institution so I’m very proud and honored to go back there,” he says on Europe 1.
“We didn’t think about accessibility issues”
A day shared between meetings and administrative details to settle. It was therefore necessary to go through, in a wheelchair, the ten buildings that make up the Bourbon Palace, an old building that was not always very accessible at the time it was built. “We weren’t thinking about accessibility issues, so there is a place with a slightly steep ramp,” he explains at the microphone of Europe 1.
“And afterwards, it is especially the hemicycle which is small. So it is very difficult to access all the seats. I will be seated next to the ministers, therefore completely at the edge of the road. And therefore for that, it is necessary to arrange a voting box, a tablet and then a microphone which are installed”.
Accessibility concerns that are already in the process of being resolved. The new deputy intends to settle these practical questions as quickly as possible and then think about the commissions he wishes to join: social affairs or sustainable development.