ARTICLES OF INTEREST
This story is about the challenges we face, even when intentions are good In its September 12th edition The New York Times food critic Frank Bruni presented an article entitled “When Accessibility Isn’t Hospitality”. It details the trials and travails of several mobility-disabled New Yorkers seeking pleasant dining experiences at trendy eateries in the city. It shows the difficulties they encounter, even when the ADA is technically complied with and the intentions of everybody from the owners to the wait staff are faultless, and leads us to once again utter the query: when will society’s consciousness catch up with our reality? The article illustrates that good intentions are not enough!!! Mr. Bruni’s excellent article can be found online at http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/12/dining/12acce.html?pagewanted=print.
Alliance celebrated Disability Action Week by officially launching its new e-service, http://www.australiaforall.com.au, which is a national One-Stop-Shop for accessible tourism in Australia. The Alliance is a volunteer not-for-profit community service. Its website is devoted entirely to accommodation and tourist venues which cater to the requirements of people with physical, vision and hearing impairments. Over 160 facilities ranging from large resorts to small farm stays, B&B’s, restaurants, museums and outdoor activities, have asked to be part of the website. This new e-service is a result of a National Survey undertaken by the Alliance regarding the barriers confronted by people with disabilities when they have tried to make vacation arrangements or visit tourism venues. Some of the problems highlighted by the survey of 1,300 participants were –
47% complained that even though they telephoned an accommodation or tourist venue to find out if it was accessible for their mobility aids (wheelchairs etc), and were told it was, they found it was not when they arrived.
42.7% of participants with a physical disability had difficulty in finding accessible vacation accommodation
36% had difficulty in obtaining information on the accessibility of the area they wished to visit.
86.7% of vision impaired participants found a lack of Braille/tactile signage in hotels/motels
80% found a lack of either information in alternative formats or audio displays in tourist venues, such as museums
100% of hearing impaired participants found that there was a lack of vision alarm systems for emergency egress in hotels
90.0% found a lack of captioning on TV’s in all accommodations
81.8% found a lack of touch audio information screens with captioning in tourist venues.
In addition to the website, you can contact AustraliaForAll Alliance’s Co-ordinator Sheila King (an Access Now® member) at 07 4125 7771 for further information.
Have you ever wondered how one gets from the boardwalk to the beach in a wheelchair? Stymied on how one modifies a home to accommodate a disability? Unsure about what transportation is available for the disabled in Miami-Dade County, Florida? For all those with physical or sensory disabilities, a new, updated, second edition of the handbook, ACCESS MIAMI, has the answers…
ACCESS MIAMI is a local resource guide for folks who use canes, crutches, walkers, wheelchairs or other aids. It features information ranging from access to parks and pools to educational facilities and employment. The handbook is easy to use. Divided into categories, it includes a description of services offered and all the necessary contact information. For more information, please e-mail Rochelle Baer at: firstname.lastname@example.org (Congrats to Rochelle for a thoroughly good job!)
ACCESS MIAMI is available, free of charge, at:
The Center for Independent Living, 501 NE 1st Avenue, Suite 102
Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, 1095 NW 14 Terrace
Shake-A-Leg, 2600 South Bayshore Drive
Miami Lighthouse for the Blind, 601 SW 8th Avenue
Human Services Coalition,
Books & Books, all branches.