[bct] Re: Making things cross disability accessible

  • From: Tim Cross <tcross@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 26 Feb 2006 00:23:39 +1100

Hi Dan,

agree that what is needed is creative thinking. The real problem is
ignorance and a failure to consult. Whats worse is the danger that
those building curbs, paths, buildings, web sites etc will get
concerned that if they consult, time to completion will blow out and
so will costs. The result is that often those who know better don't
obther trying to find out how to best do something because they are
worried the costs will blow out. 

Whats really important is education and advocacy combined with
individuals with disabilities being prepared to work for a solution
and not wait for one to be provided.

However, I am beginning to get very angry with the current pro
business attitudes we are getting all the time. People are now less
important than business and thats a shame. 

A while back, I had a fight with the local council over sandwhich
board advertising signs and the encroachment of business space into
public space. Where I live, businesses have taken to putting sandwhich
borads, display racks, table and chairs all over the footpath. I
tried, with quite a few others, to get this practice stopped or at the
very least some restrictions which wouldn't make trying to navigate
down town a complete nightmare. We were unsuccessful because the
council was afraid of upsetting local businesses who argued they would
go broke if they were forced to put their stuff against the shopfront
and less out in the middle. the problem is, each wants their stuff to
stand out more than the other, so they all move further and further
out into the space which use to be public areas. 



The Scarlet Wombat writes:
 > Darrell, I agree, but with a reservation.  Sometimes, somebody will get the 
 > short end of the stick.  This is often more a matter of perception than 
 > reality.  When dealing with multiple disabilities, we must be willing to 
 > compromise so all may be accomodated.  This can mean, at times, that we end 
 > up in suboptimal situations, but then, so will everyone else.  Perhaps with 
 > more advances in technology, such situations will be minimized.
 > Often, meeting the needs of multiple disabilities is just a matter of 
 > creativity.  Curb cuts that work so well for folks in chairs are deadly to 
 > us.  The simple solution is to texture the pavement or concrete in a manner 
 > that will alert the blind person to the cut and still provide the access to 
 > the street and sidewalks those in chairs need.  This is a simple example, 
 > and nobody gets the short end of things with it.
 > Dan 

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