• ​​​​​​​in cooperation with the Supreme Council for Health and the Ministry of Health
  • BAC introduces a new scheme for a seamless travel experience to all passengers with hidden disabilities. 

Muharraq, Bahrain – Under the slogan “We See You”, Bahrain Airport Company (BAC), the operator and managing body of Bahrain International Airport (BIA), has announced the official launch of the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Scheme, under the patronage of H.E Lieutenant General Doctor Sheikh Mohamed Bin Abdullah Al-Khalifa Chairman of the Supreme Council of Health, and in collaboration with the Supreme Council of Health and the Ministry of Health. The event was attended by Gulf Air Group Holding Chairman (GFG) H.E Mr. Zayed R. Alzayani, GFG CEO Mr. Jeffrey Goh and BAC CEO Mr. Mohamed Yousif Al Binfalah along with BIA strategic partners.  

Bahrain International Airport has become the second airport in the Middle East to implement the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Scheme. This pioneering initiative aims to enhance the travel experience for individuals with hidden disabilities, ensuring their needs are recognized, understood, and supported throughout their journey. The Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Scheme is a globally recognized program that employs the use of a discreet sunflower symbol to identify passengers with non-visible disabilities. By wearing the sunflower lanyard, individuals can indicate to airport staff that they may require additional assistance or have specific needs that should be addressed.

Passengers with hidden disabilities such as autism, anxiety disorders, dementia, Crohn's disease, and more, who require additional support, can proceed to check-in counter B19, where they can receive the Sunflower lanyard. Wearing this lanyard will signify to all airport staff members that the passenger may need special handling and assistance during security procedures, navigating the airport, or boarding.

H.E. Lieutenant General Doctor Sheikh Mohamed Bin Abdullah Al-Khalifa, Chairman of the Supreme Council of Health commented on the significance of this program, "The Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Scheme is a critical step towards fostering inclusivity and understanding within our society. By partnering with Bahrain International Airport and the Ministry of Health, we aim to raise awareness and promote a more supportive environment for individuals with hidden disabilities. We believe that this initiative will contribute to their overall well-being and enable them to travel with confidence."

H.E. Mr. Zayed R. Alzayani expressed his contentment about this Bahrain Airport Company initiative, stating, "This initiative aligns with our vision of creating a more accessible travel environment, ensuring that every passenger feels supported at Bahrain International Airport. We work side by side with our strategic partners across the airport to enhance the travel experience for passengers with visible and invisible disabilities, such as those with autism, chronic fatigue, and post-traumatic stress disorder. The initiative also falls in line with the resolution of the General Assembly of the International Civil Aviation Organization and the United Nations Convention of 2019 on the rights of persons with disabilities, both of which affirm the right of all individuals with disabilities to enjoy all basic rights and freedoms, regardless of their types.”

He further added, “We aim to meet the needs of individuals with disabilities at all stages throughout our airport, especially those with invisible disabilities such as autism, chronic fatigue, or chronic pain.”

Mr. Paul White, the CEO of Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Scheme said expressing his excitement about BIA joining the scheme,” We’re thrilled that Bahrain International Airport is joining the global Hidden Disabilities Sunflower network. The launch of the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Scheme highlights the airport's commitment to create a welcoming environment for passengers and visitors with non-visible disabilities. It serves as a reminder that non-visible disabilities should not act as a barrier to travel and we're excited to see the positive influence the Sunflower will have on the travel experiences of People of Determination at Bahrain Airport."

BAC has already conducted comprehensive training for a total of 100 frontliners from various airport stakeholders to equip the airport staff with the necessary knowledge and skills to provide specialized support and assistance to passengers with hidden disabilities. The training encompassed BAC terminal operations, Aviation Security, Gulf Air, Duty Free, Airport Police, Customs, Immigration, Hala Bahrain, and Bahrain Airport Services (BAS).

The launch of the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Scheme at Bahrain International Airport signifies a major milestone in the pursuit of a more inclusive travel experience, ensuring that all passengers, regardless of their abilities, receive equal opportunities and exceptional service throughout their journey. For more information, please visit www.Bahrainairport.bh.

About Bahrain Airport Company (BAC)

Bahrain Airport Company (BAC) is the operator and managing body of Bahrain International Airport (BIA), the gateway that connects the Kingdom with the world. Tasked with developing the airport’s infrastructure, facilities, and commercial offerings, BAC has transformed BIA into the most modern boutique airport in the Gulf. With a strong focus on innovation, efficiency, and culture, BAC’s goal is to ensure that BIA stands out as a best-in-class airport that reflects the Kingdom’s distinct character and strengthens its position as a financial, cultural, and aviation center in the region. Since assuming the responsibility of managing and operating the airport in 2010, BAC has cemented BIA’s reputation as an attractive hub for airlines and passengers.

For more information visit www.bahrainairport.bh
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