February 2011 Archives

Ms. Rosangela Berman-Bieler was recently appointed as UNICEF's Senior Adviser on Children with Disabilities, in the Gender, Rights and Civic Engagement Section of the Division of Policy and Practice, New York. Rosangela is a Brazilian journalist, publisher and disability rights advocate, who is known internationally for her work on disability issues. She founded the first Independent Living Centre in Brazil in the 1980s, and is also founder and president of the Inter-American Institute on Disability and Inclusive Development, an NGO created to promote social, economic and political empowerment and participation of persons with disabilities in the LAC Region, and in Portuguese-speaking countries in Africa. Rosangela has worked as a consultant for the Inter-American Development Bank, the World Bank and various UN agencies, focusing on disability, inclusive development and poverty alleviation in Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa. One of her most notable achievements is helping to negotiate the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. 

Within UNICEF's renewed focus on equity, Rosangela will contribute her extensive expertise on mainstreaming disability, as well as and her strong advocacy and networking experience, to help ensure that the principles and practice of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities are incorporated in UNICEF's advocacy, programming and humanitarian work. She will work with UNICEF's Regional Offices and Headquarters Divisions, to provide strategic leadership and will act as an advocate and facilitator of good practice and innovative action to support UNICEF's fulfillment of its mandate to promote and protect the rights of children with disabilities, and its commitment to be an inclusive organization. Rosangela may be reached at rbermanbieler@unicef.org.

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Desde Solidaridad Digital


El director de Accesibilidad Universal de Fundación ONCE, Jesús Hernández, pidió este viernes la colaboración de "todos" para crear una sociedad "accesible" y "mejor" para todas las personas, durante la clausura del II Foro Internacional de Diseño Universal, celebrado en Málaga.

 

Hernández, que felicitó al Ayuntamiento de Málaga por esta iniciativa, animó a los asistentes a "difundir lo que han vivido" durante el Foro, ya que, dijo, "es una cuestión de todos y cada uno de quienes componen esta sociedad crear una sociedad mejor para todos".

 

Además, se refirió al trabajo realizado durante más de 20 años por la Fundación ONCE para incorporar la accesibilidad y el diseño universal a todos los ámbitos de la vida y crear "una sociedad para todos", y, puntualizó, "poco a poco lo vamos consiguiendo".

 

Anteriormente, Hernández participó en la mesa redonda "Nuevo concepto de ciudad. Aspectos económicos y sociales", donde abordó la inclusión del diseño para todos en las compras públicas en Europa.

 

COMPRAS PÚBLICAS TIC

En este sentido, explicó que el pasado 2010 concluyeron los trabajos del mandato europeo sobre compras públicas de tecnologías de la información y la comunicación (TIC) accesibles, con el objetivo de definir unos requisitos de accesibilidad para los productos y servicios adquiridos por las administraciones públicas.

 

Según afirmó Hernández, se han iniciado los trabajos de la segunda fase de este mandato con el objetivo de armonizar las pautas en el proceso de compra pública, aplicando los criterios de accesibilidad, y crear una herramienta que ayude a los profesionales que se dedican a realizar estas compras dentro de la Administración porque en esta línea, puntualizó, "hay escaso conocimiento".

 

Asimismo, destacó el mandato europeo 420 de requisitos de accesibilidad en las compras públicas de productos y servicios en el entorno con un objetivo similar al del sector TIC. En este sentido, afirmó que Fundación ONCE, junto al Ayuntamiento de Málaga, ha impulsado el desarrollo de una herramienta que ayude a realizar estas compras.

 

Tras el Foro, el Ayuntamiento de Málaga, en colaboración con otras entidades, impulsará la "Declaración Málaga" con el objetivo de establecer un concepto catalogado de diseño universal y pondrá en marcha una red de ciudades por la accesibilidad.

 

"PROYECTO CAMPUS" DE REPSOL

Previamente, se presentó el "Proyecto Campus" que será la nueva sede social de Repsol YPF en Madrid. Ocupará una superficie de tres hectáreas, cercana a la Estación de Atocha, y albergará a 3.800 trabajadores.

 

Según explicaron Teresa Gallo, arquitecto del Departamento de Proyectos de Fundosa Accesibilidad-Vía Libre, e Ignacio Valencia, ingeniero del proyecto, se trata de un proyecto de última generación que dispondrá de alta tecnología enfocada a la eficiencia energética, sostenibilidad y respeto medioambiental.

 

Una de sus premisas es la dimensión humana del proyecto, concebido en el centro de la urbe para facilitar la conciliación laboral y la mayor accesibilidad y comodidad de los empleados de Repsol.

 

Como señalaron ambos ponentes, Repsol ha confiado en Vía Libre (compañía del Grupo empresarial de la Fundación ONCE) por medio de la adjudicación de dos concursos de control de calidad en materia de accesibilidad que, iniciados en mayo de 2009, tendrán una continuidad de varios años.

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DA AGÊNCIA BRASIL:

Os desfile das escolas de samba do Grupo Especial do Rio de Janeiro terão uma novidade

 este ano. Pela primeira vez, os deficientes visuais poderão ouvir uma narração detalhada dos desfiles dentro do Sambódromo. O serviço é gratuito e estará disponível no domingo (6) e na segunda-feira (7), além do desfile das campeãs (12).

De acordo com a Secretaria Municipal de Turismo, um funcionário descreverá, ao vivo, as alegorias, alas, fantasias, enredos e evolução da escola que está se apresentando. Os deficientes receberão as informações por intermédio de um fone de ouvido. Eles poderão retirar os fones em cabines da prefeitura, instaladas na entrada do setor 13, exclusivo para portadores de deficiência.

Ao todo, 60 fones poderão ser usados por dia. No setor 13, 300 ingressos para pessoas com deficiência já foram disponibilizados pela Riotur (Empresa de Turismo do Município do Rio de Janeiro).

O novo sistema é considerado um avanço pela vice-diretora do Instituto Benjamin Constant, Maria da Glória Almeida. Segundo ela, a iniciativa cumpre a lei da acessibilidade.

A vice-diretora, que também é deficiente visual, enfatizou a importância da inclusão dos deficientes visuais nos espetáculos de lazer. "Você vai compartilhar de fato o evento. Vai participar realmente como membro efetivo."

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Out of Africa - some good news!

Piet Human is a dynamic experienced South African entrepreneur. His new innovative audio-visual tour guide has been years in the making and promises to be a new type of travel resource for those with disabilities.

The meeting report below illustrates how Piet's can-do attitude cuts through knots of miscommunication and discriminatory air travel policy to end up with progress toward sustainable justice and customer loyalty among travelers with disabilities. 

Thanks to Piet - and the long tradition of high quality tour operations for visitors with disabilities in South Africa - this group he called together moved South Africa farther up the list of most desirable countries for travelers with disabilities to visit. Yabo! Let's go!

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South Africa is hosting several International Conferences for persons with disabilities later this year. Some agencies and Tour Operators were surprised by the rules for Deaf passengers on our domestic flights. When Jennea Bezuidenhout of Access2Africa Safaris reported these problems to her associate Piet Human of Incar Travel Guide in Johannesburg, he immediately saw an opportunity to start a corrective action plan.

His 10 years working for the National Institute for the Deaf and being self-employed developing Accessible Tourism Systems, gave him enough experience to soon spot the problem areas as he started to study reams of documents by the Civil Aviation Authority and local Airline policies.

Realizing that this could become a long and expensive exercise he nevertheless managed to set up a meeting with the senior manager at the CAA the very next day.

When he got there the meeting suddenly grew to a dozen people! All involved in policy making issues for the disabled in aviation. "That was the quickest presentation I've put together in my mind ever!" says Piet!

He restricted the meeting to issues of a Deaf nature, as that was the most urgent at the time. The airlines rules causing the problems stated things like: A maximum of 8 Deaf passengers are allowed on a 160 seater aircraft. Another airline insisted on 1 able person to accompany every 5 disabled passengers.

These were the main points and outcomes of the meeting:

The CAA acknowledged shortcomings in the rules and regulations, and has embarked on a renewal project concerning their regulations for domestic airlines, but unfortunately the process has grinded to a halt some time ago.

Amongst the many CAA regulations of 1997, no 121.07.15 stated: "The operator of a large commercial air transport aeroplane shall establish procedures, including identification, seating positions and handling in the event of an emergency, for the carriage of passengers with a disability."

Piet remarked: "This was the one statement in the document that for me stood out as part of the problem. At a glance, all the other regulations made perfect sense for wheelchair users, but certainly not for Deaf passengers."  

He went on by suggesting that a shortcoming in the wording of that regulation regarding "Carriage of passengers with disability" should be seen as part of the problem. Airline operators were expected to form their own rules within the CAA regulations, and it is exactly there where defective rules are being created by inexperienced people perhaps even without any consultations with the disabled or their expert advisors. Without a doubt the essential requirement of using expert advice should form part of the regulation.

It came as a great relief when the CAA officials immediately accepted his proposal without any hesitance. Piet pointed out that it is no abled bodied person's fault for not knowing the finer details of a Deaf traveler needs to be safe on an aircraft. But it is a gross oversight for them not to involve people in the know when it comes to policy making.

DeafSA, the regulating body for people with hearing loss in SA has got a popular slogan: "Nothing for the Deaf without the Deaf!" Can you now see the point!?

Me. Yolinda Mooloo, responsible for the new drive behind change, reiterated her undertaking to rekindle the fire to get the CAA's updating process back on track, knowing full well that it is a long and tedious undertaking.

So what about the immediate problems for Deaf group bookings, as no new rules are likely to be ready in time for the conferences this year?  

The CAA agreed that the limitation on the number of Deaf passengers per flight as well as the 5:1 able persons rule is NOT a requirement as far as safety and other regulations are concerned for the CAA. The CAA never suggested that to airlines in the first place!

Airlines should begin to realize that a Deaf passenger can do everything, except hear! There are no logical reasons why any Airline would require these limitations as a safety measure. That can be confirmed by many experts in Deaf matters around the globe.

In view of the immediate need for the conferences this year, Piet was asked to write to all the operators and refer them to Mr. Thabo Fisha at the CAA  fishat@caa.co.za, 011 545-1210 who chaired the meeting. Agents need to request an agent exemption from these limitations, which will then enable all Deaf groups to travel together and as they wish with no restrictions other than that they will not be seated around the emergency exits on any aircraft.  

This exemption will be provided by the CAA, effective for all domestic flights for this year. Agents should allow 3 days for processing. 

Piet pleaded with the CAA not to leave the matter there, but instead continue the process of moving forward until fair and practical new rules are in place that will not undermine people's dignity, all in line with our great new exemplary constitution.

The best news of the day was that the meeting fully supported that need as well. A permanent solution will be sought by the CAA, but this time with the right advisors in place! Piet made a point of recommending the meeting to tap into international resources such as Scott Rains (USA) and Simon Darcy (Australia) who both are powerful role players in Universal Access issues.

On that happy note, the meeting adjourned!

And the best of all? This took only 2 days to materialize!

 

 


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XVI World Deaf Congress in Durban

You may be planning to attend the World Deaf Congress and enjoy the sights of Durban, South Africa.   


EARLY BIRD REGISTRATION IS OPEN UNTIL 15 APRIL 2011
For further information, check on WFD Congress website: www.wfd2011.com/ The WFD Congress Registration is available now online. For fees and registration visit: http://wfd2011.com/registration

 

WorldCongressRegistrationposterWEB.jpg

The synopsis of the World Congress Theme has affirmed by both the WFD Board and OCWCWFDSA on 21st April 2009, the following:-

We come together to share our cultural heritages, our improved well being, the advancement of our human rights and our rich contribution to global prosperity; to demonstrate we are an essential part of human diversity in the world and its development.

We come to learn from each other, to actively share common responsibility amongst ourselves and in the rest of the world.

We come together at this Congress to collectively face current changes and future challenges confronting Deaf communities across the globe.

We also come together in celebration of our future; to reaffirm the linguistic, cultural and political capacity of national and the worldwide Deaf community, to continue the recognition of sign languages in national laws and international policies, and to celebrate artistic, cultural, economic and social accomplishments.

The XVI World Congress of the World Federation of the Deaf aims to inspire its attendees to take forward the concept of a renaissance, a rebirth of Deaf communities worldwide.


Welcome

It is a great pleasure and honor to write the first message as President of World Federation of the Deaf for this new website of XVI WFD Congress 2011 in Durban, South Africa. You all are welcome to enjoy reading these pages and use them as an important source of information for the coming Congress and WFD General Assembly.

DeafSA as one of our 130 Ordinary Members of WFD is a host for the first ever WFD General Assembly and WFD Congress to be held in Africa continent. I am sure it will also bring the biggest number of African Deaf people, activists, professionals, interest groups ever in these important meetings to share their experiences, knowledge and expertise to be used for welfare and improving human rights of Deaf people in Africa and all over the world. It will also be very exciting then to share what we have achieved through using the Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the first international Treaty ever that recognizes sign languages and linguistic human rights, linguistic identity and culture of Deaf people. I am sure participants all over the world will enjoy beautiful nature and city of Durban and South African culture with its great hospitality and friendliness as well.

Dear users of this website, I am sure you use actively this to prepare yourselves to participate in these important international events and learn more about DeafSA and its activities.

Wishing you enjoyable and useful moments with this website,

Markku Jokinen

WFD President

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Although he is studying American Sign Language (ASL) just up the road from me here in the San Francisco By Area I have still not been fortunate enough to meet Maged Nabawy who I have been corresponding with for years. Maged has specialized in tours for Deaf travelers. Now Egypt, like Thailand post-tsunami, is putting out the welcome mat to invite tourists to return.




 
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The news of DOT's $2.5 million fine against Delta Airlines posed a journalistic dilemma. On the one hand we knew that this newsworthy event would get its predictable 48 hours of media mindshare but what is the responsibility of those who specialize in reporting about and consulting on inclusion of travelers with disabilities? How could the bully pulpit of social media bring light where there was sure to be heat?

Enter Gerald Adams Scootaround's manager of Online Services.

Gerald was first introduced to me with high praise by some of the pioneers in Inclusive Tourism. Read his guest article about how Scootaround works in the background to make the industry work for us and you will see why.

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Each year, more and more travelers are choosing air travel as their primary mode of transportation. The benefits easily outweigh most other traditional forms of travel; from increased safety and security, a wide selection of flight times across multiple carriers, and best of all, reaching one's destination in the quickest manner possible.

As the amount of passengers increase -- the FAA projects that air travel is scheduled to double in the next 20 years reaching the one billion passengers per year mark by 2021 -- so does the likelihood of passengers traveling with personal mobility equipment. As the mobility equipment industry reacts to a demand by "new seniors" or the "new-aged" as they are being labeled, manufacturers are being asked to produce a more adaptable, portable set of devices that allow a more robust and mobile lifestyle.

New interior on Delta Air Lines' Boeing 737-80...

Image via Wikipedia

With air carriers experiencing the higher volumes of traveling mobility equipment, it is inevitable that equipment damage in transit will also increase exponentially. There is now a growing demand to provide a service for addressing the repair of this equipment while still meeting the special needs of the disabled customer.

This has created both a challenge and an opportunity for progressive air carriers.

Enter Scootaround's Optimum Service Program (SOS)

Launched in 2008, this program and its team of mobility equipment specialists, now support more than 25 carriers worldwide. SOS, the first program of its kind anywhere, is designed to serve the equipment claim requirements of both the traveling public and the airline industry. Scootaround initially had come to be known as the primary national service for individual traveling customers who required mobility equipment rentals at their point of destination. From that beginning Scootaround's scope grew to include specialized mobility rental services at the major convention centers and primary venues throughout the United States. When the service of equipment damaged in transit began to become a more profound requirement, Scootaround was the company of choice to embrace this service. The results have been positive with Scootaround now actively engaged in providing the services for a variety of airlines including Delta/Northwest with whom they first initiated the service.

Services for the Air Carrier - For those travelers disadvantaged by personal mobility equipment damage in transit, Scootaround has been actively involved in working towards an expedient and efficient means of addressing the traveler's requirement to be provided with an interim equipment solution to allow the continuation of their travel needs. They also provide a complete assessment and repair solution for the damaged equipment. Through their established nationwide network of repair depots, SOS is now able to handle claims involving all types of mobility equipment (e.g. mobility scooters, power chairs, wheelchairs, rollators, etc.).

Delta Airlines has used the SOS program for a number of years and has looked to Scootaround for both claims support and for assistance in enhancing their mobility equipment handing procedures.  After employing the services of the SOS program, David S. Martin, Manager for Delta Airlines Disabilities Program said

I have every confidence in the work Scootaround has done and will do for Delta and our customers -- so much so that we have contracted with them to handle all of Delta's claims for North America

That confidence has encouraged the SOS team to continue their ground-breaking services and to help work towards better solutions for damage occurrences.

Services for the Individual Traveler - For individuals who require a mobility device repair for equipment damaged in transit, the SOS team will step in to handle the claim on their behalf. The traveler need only place a call to the Scootaround's One-Call System and an SOS team member will initiate the repair process and deal with the airline directly. The SOS service has grown to include a series of team members that have helped many travelers receive their mobility equipment back with the least amount of disruption.

From a simple joystick repair to a more profound repair of specialized or custom equipment, the SOS team continually demonstrates the expertise required to get the mobility device up and running as soon as possible. This is not always an easy task given today's ever-changing mobility equipment market. The team is constantly exposed to claims involving highly-customized equipment, older, antiquated models and even current models that are be hot off the assembly line.

Another available service for travelers is to leave their mobility equipment at home and have a rental unit delivered and waiting for them at their point of destination. With more than 1500 locations nationwide, Scootaround can be called upon to deliver mobility equipment rentals to businesses, hotels, resorts, convention centers, outdoor venues and almost anywhere travelers require mobility assistance. With thousands of rental customers served each month, Scootaround has the experience to supply the best rental equipment option. 

What's Next?

As the SOS team continues to stay in touch with the industry changes, Scootaround Inc. will continue to support ongoing efforts for service and industry enhancements while continuing to provide the traveling community with the support needed for their equipment needs.

More about Scootaround and SOS:

www.scootaroundoptimumservice.com 



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Málaga Promove Diseño Universal

En la imagen, cartel del Foro

En iniciativa fue promovida por el Ayuntamiento de Málaga a través del Área de Accesibilidad, la Consejería para la Igualdad y Bienestar Social de la Junta de Andalucía, la Fundación ONCE y el Comité Español de Representantes de Personas con Discapacidad (CERMI).

En esta segunda edición del foro también han colaborado el Ministerio de Sanidad y Política Social a través delIMSERSO y el Real Patronato sobre Discapacidad, el Centro Estatal de Autonomía Personal y Ayudas Técnicas, y la Federación Española de Municipios y Provincias (FEMP).
Entre los sectores representados han destacado agencias de turismo accesible; empresas especializadas en ascensores y elementos elevadores, automoción y medios de transporte; comunicación y nuevas tecnologías; domótica; educación, formación y empleo; estudios de arquitectura, ingeniería, diseño industrial y construcción; fabricantes de juguetes; mobiliario y electrodomésticos; movilidad y tele asistencia; seguridad y control de accesos; servicios para la salud y el bienestar y telefonía e informática.
Durante el  congreso s realizaron una serie de mesas temáticas en las que se abordaron todos los ámbitos del diseño universal, como por ejemplo las formas de comunicación derivadas de la irrupción de las nuevas tecnologías y las ventajas de la domótica y la edificación accesible.
Entre las principales novedades de esta edición destacó la inclusión del "Espacio de Experiencias", en el que se recogieron  las buenas prácticas más destacadas vinculadas al diseño universal a través de paneles gráficos. Este Espacio de Experiencias incidirió en los mismos temas abordados en el congreso y relacionados con las nuevas formas de comunicación derivadas de la "revolución tecnológica" y el nuevo concepto de ciudad accesible.
En total fueron 22 experiencias llevadas a cabo por distintos ayuntamientos y diputaciones de toda España, proyectos de éxito y las buenas prácticas más recientes desarrolladas para mejorar la accesibilidad y construir ciudades para todos.
Noticias relacionadas:
Source:

Expantion of Haneda, Tokyo International Airport.

Image via Wikipedia

With leadership, foresight, and a sense of justice like this in other countries would air travel improve for people with disabilities worldwide?

Following Andy Kennedy's argument in "Can the Airlines Survive the New Access Fines?"

would Delta Airlines have been fined $2.5 million US if the airport had used the simple good design - Universal Design - described here?

Even if one argues that serious distortions of business culture and fiduciary responsibility to shareholder reside in the upper management of Delta Airlines could such a culture sustain itself when "exclusion is excluded by design" like this?

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By Takeharu Yasuda / Yomiuri Shimbun


Japan's airports have been rapidly improving their buildings and facilities based on the concept of "universal design" as a wide variety of people, such as the elderly, parents with baby strollers and people using wheelchairs, pass through airports.

Universal design refers to hardware and software considerations to enable anyone to safely and comfortably use public facilities.

Looking at the departure lobby of the international passengers terminal building of Tokyo's Haneda Airport, Prof. Yoshihiko Kawauchi of Toyo University said, "I believe the universal design of this airport is world class."

Kawauchi, who uses a wheelchair, was deputy chairman of a universal design consideration panel for the terminal building, which opened in October last year.

The most hotly debated issue in the panel's discussions was the design of doors for multifunction toilets.

In the terminal building, all restrooms are equipped with multifunction toilets intended mainly for people in wheelchairs, those with baby strollers, and those with artificial bladders.

Not only the interior fixtures but also the doors were designed for easy use.

People in wheelchairs with weak arm strength usually find automatic doors convenient.

But when such a person is accompanied by a helper, an automatic door can become troublesome. If the helper assists the disabled person in getting situated on the toilet and then politely steps away to provide some privacy, the door's sensors may think it is time to leave and open the door, possibly exposing the person on the toilet to the view of passersby.

For people who are visually impaired, the buttons to open and close the automatic doors can be difficult to locate.

Thus, the airport's universal design panel finally chose doors that open manually and are made of very lightweight material.

Elevators at the airport are equipped with emergency buttons for the hearing-impaired, because ordinary emergency buttons are useless for such people as the system only enables the user to talk with staff.

If a person presses the special emergency button for the hearing-impaired, an airport employee will come to the scene and communicate with the troubled user through written messages or sign language through the elevator's glass doors.

Also, the terminal building introduced the world's first non-sloping boarding bridges. The building also has toilets exclusively for assistance dogs.

The design of the building also took into consideration the convenience of nondisabled people.

The electronic flight information boards employ fonts that make it easier to distinguish 0 from O. The boards also display the content of announcements from speakers, thus are convenient for not only the hearing-impaired but also others who missed hearing the announcements.

There are also 85 "concierge" staff stationed at or near information counters. All of them speak English, and some also speak Korean and Chinese. They can accompany people in wheelchairs and communicate with sign language.

Guide maps for the visually impaired are available. The Braille maps, which fold in half, are useful to nondisabled people as well.

Nobuhisa Nakamura, senior manager of Tokyo International Air Terminal Corp., which manages buildings at Haneda Airport, said: "We'll reconvene the universal design panel, possibly in autumn this year. We'll examine tasks to further improve the facilities."

Centrair in Tokoname, Aichi Prefecture, which opened in February 2005, is said to be the nation's first airport to employ the concept of universal design in its buildings.

That airport's design was made more universal not only by engineering hardware improvements but also by considering opinions from disabled people and outside experts.

This approach was also taken in work on Haneda Airport and the international passengers terminal building of New Chitose Airport in Chitose, Hokkaido, which opened in March last year.

In July 2005, the Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Ministry drafted an outline of policy for promoting universal design in which all kinds of people can comfortably live.

The ministry has encouraged construction and renovation of public transportation and facilities, including airports, based on the concept.

Makoto Nakazawa, president of Barrier Free Co., a Tokyo-based firm assisting companies and organizations in introducing the universal design concept, said: "Though Haneda Airport's level of universal design is textbook-perfect, it's too costly for ordinary companies and hotels to do the same.

"The level doesn't need to be perfect for everybody from the beginning. It's important to start on the parts that are possible to do now."

(Feb. 23, 2011)
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Baby boomers turning 65: 

What does it mean for all of us?

As the birthday celebrations commence, University at Buffalo faculty experts are available to comment on tips and trends related to aging in America. Topic areas include elder law, geriatric medicine, hearing loss, mental health, television viewing and designs for living.

The thoughts of the UB faculty members are summarized below.  

Will hearing aids become a fashion statement? Rock music takes its toll 

Richard Salvi, PhD, UB professor of communicative disorder and sciences, otolaryngology and neurology and director of the UB Center for Hearing and Deafness, is an expert in deafness and hearing loss.

According to Salvi, "baby boomers now have reached an age where hearing loss and tinnitus become major health problems. Many have already lost much of their hearing and developed tinnitus (ringing in the ear) due to many years of listening to loud rock music.

"Hearing aids, not yet considered a fashion statement, will by necessity become a necessary part of the boomers dress code as the prevalence of age-related hearing loss begins to accelerate beyond age 65. While hearing aid technology and miniaturization have steadily advanced, restoring the hearing of our youth remains a formidable challenge," he says.

"Hearing health care costs are skyrocketing due to noise exposure and aging. The Veterans Administration ranks hearing loss as one of its Top 5 major disabilities. In 2010, the Veterans Administration paid out more than $1 billion for tinnitus disability claims alone. The trends in the VA are a reflection of those in the general population."

Severe to profound hearing loss and tinnitus associated with aging and noise exposure are not just hearing problems; they can lead to social isolation, anxiety and depression contributing to an overall decline in one's general health, Salvi says.

Salvi can be reached by phone at 716-829-5310 or by e-mail at salvi@buffalo.edu.

Near-death continues to be a reality on TV

Today's television lineup includes many reality shows about ESP, "true-ghost" stories and the wonder of near-death experiences. Are they aimed at the elderly? Pop culture expert Elayne Rapping, PhD, professor emerita of American studies, says that whether they are aimed at the elderly or not, her hunch is that's who is watching them. "After all," she says, "TV supports wishful thinking and shows that entertain the connection between the here and the hereafter may be more enticing to an aging population than to those who don't plan on leaving the earthly plane anytime soon."

Rapping can be reached at erapping@gmail.com

Aging-in-place may replace nursing homes in the future

Anthony H. Szczygiel, a professor in the UB Law School, has extensive experience lecturing, studying and actively taking on cases of elder law and says the elderly and near elderly are demanding changes in how society, governments and the courts deal with aging-related chronic care.

"Traditional nursing home stays are being replaced with new ways of dealing with chronic needs, such as the Greenhouse Project for rethinking nursing home facilities and care and the aging-in-place Village movement," says Szczygiel. "A new example of this Village movement approach to elder care, Canopy of Neighbors, will open soon to serve the aging in one Buffalo neighborhood," he says.

Szczygiel notes that in the legal arena, two recent federal court decisions give support to nursing home residents and their families challenging the warehousing of chronically ill elders, where the resident may benefit from continued physical or occupational therapy. "Too often the nursing home staff gives up on the patient and stops providing such therapy," he says. "The cases provide a way to reverse the unintended negative consequences of Medicare's nursing home and home care coverage standards."

Szczygiel also is knowledgeable of the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which provides significant support to research and demonstration projects aimed at better handling chronic health care problems.

Szczygiel can be reached at szczygie@buffalo.edu or by contacting Charles Anzalone in UB's Office of Communications at 716-645-4600.

Stress and the sandwich generation

Scott T. Meier, professor and chair of the UB Department Counseling, School and Educational Psychology in the Graduate School of Education, is an expert in counseling and psychotherapy.

"Traditionally, the elderly have been less interested in mental health services than younger people," states Meier. "However, that may partially be a generational effect in that people who came of age in the 1960s and later are more accustomed to the idea of using counseling and psychotherapy for personal, vocational and family problems. Consequently, we may see the average age of individuals in counseling and psychotherapy increase over the next two decades.

"One of the issues that may cause stress for boomers is that they are more likely to have to take care of elderly parents (who are living longer) as well as their own children (who may have more trouble getting employed and established in careers and families)."

Meier can be reached by e-mail at stmeier@buffalo.edu or by phone at 716-645-1121.

Old doesn't have to mean sick

Robert S. Stall, MD, is a UB clinical assistant professor in medicine and a specialist in geriatrics.

Stall says boomers should avoid self-prejudice ("Doctor, I'm not getting any younger!") and ignore ageist comments from friends, family, even health professionals ("What do you expect at your age?"). Aging boomers have a lot to expect in terms of health and well-being, Stall says. "You should tend to both the diseases and the dis-eases (such as pain, depression, social isolation, functional problems) that are more common as you age but not due to age, in and of itself.

"Everyone knows a 95 year old who looks and acts 75, and the 65 year old who appears to be 80. And anyone who thinks the pain in their right knee is solely age-related needs to wonder how their same-aged left knee can be pain-free."

Stall says it's important to remember that "gradual decline may not be Alzheimer's disease, ageist attitudes are harmful and there is always something that can be done to help" as we age.

Stall can be reached by at drstall@stallgeriatrics.com or by phone at 716-213-4345.

Design that ages with you

Edward Steinfeld, adjunct professor of architecture and director of UB's Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access (IDEA), is an expert on issues of accessibility. He believes that products and services that benefit elders do not have to be stigmatizing or isolating.

"If we don't take steps to plan our communities and homes for aging populations, older people will be isolated and their quality of life will suffer," Steinfeld says. "Communities that feel an obligation to respond to the needs of their elder residents will proceed with specialized services like expensive paratransit, more publicly assisted housing and services like Meals on Wheels. This will increase the tax burden."

The solution to this problem, according to Steinfeld, is universal design, design for improving usability and social engagement in response to the diversity of the population. "Universal design applies to services as well as products," he explains. "I like to describe the key benefits of universal design by the stages of the lifespan: safety and security for children, independence and social responsibility for young adults, reducing stress for working-age adults and maintaining independence and social engagement for elders.

"Together with our partners, we founded an organization called the Global Universal Design Commission, which I think will soon take a leadership role in changing current attitudes in the business world. The commission already has members like AARP, Disney and Proctor and Gamble, which see the value of this idea. In a few years, universal design will be as well known as sustainability is today."

"The smart sectors of the business community, including builders, developers, planners and manufacturers, are well aware that changing demographics will provide an opportunity as well as a challenge in the future. They have not addressed the aging population very well in the past because they often believe that environments, products and services targeted to older adults are stigmatized due to ageism, thus no one else will buy them," he said.

"This, of course, leads to a separate market for things like age-restricted communities, mature market products and age-targeted services like home monitoring. Even older people don't like to identify as old in our society because 'ageism' is so rampant."

Steinfeld can be reached by e-mail at arced@buffalo.edu or by phone at 716-829-5899.

Source:

http://ubfacultyexperts.buffalo.edu/tip/112

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Andy Kennedy of Access Anything, LLC has written this guest piece at my invitation. Not only an experienced writer, dedicated promoter of inclusive travel and leisure activities, and a friend, Andy has inside experience advising a major US airline on issues of accessibility. She travels to train airline and other transportation industry professionals on their obligations under the law and the finer points of providing quality service to all customers. Andy speaks from experience. Her tenacity, ethical stance, and sense of fairness command my respect.


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The airline industry has been struggling for years to bring their accessibility up to date for travelers with disabilities.  The costs that the airlines incur annually in fixing customers' broken mobility equipment alone are astronomical.  Add that to the costs they incur for annual training on handling customers with disabilities, the costs for upgrading access equipment such as aisle chairs, onboard wheelchairs, and boarding lifts at regional airports, now in addition to the fines they incur for violating access laws, the airlines could go broke just playing catch-up. 
 
Some airlines have looked to their customers for help and have hired disability-advisory boards to help them learn how to best handle these issues.  But hosting these bi-annual meetings adds tens of thousands of dollars per meeting to the list above as well, all of which come out of the company's bottom line.   When the industry was lucrative and the laws were new, this seemed to be a logical piece of customer service spending to me. Now however, I feel the government should lend a helping, not hurting, hand.
 
In short, the Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) (similar to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)) is the governing law for the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) and Department of Transportation's (DOT) requirements for equal access. The latest ammendment to the ACAA was in May of 2009- DOT Part 382 (382)- and added a barrage of strict new standards for equal access for all airline passengers, and gave the airlines a short, twelve-month period to comply.  Many of the new regulations even applied to the airports, which the airlines have little to no control over, and the carriers were left to fend for themselves to create their own working agreements to fix the many violations in the terminals they use, but do not own.  To the airlines, it seemed an impossible feat to accomplish, but they all scrambled to complete what needed to be done, and of course many went futher into the red in doing so.
 
The DOT's 382 fines for noncompliance are astronomical. One single violation to the act will incur a $27,500 fine now, and they never incur just one fine per instance.  The latest fine was to Delta Airlines (released February 17, 2011) in the amount of $2,000,000, the largest 382 fine to date.  But Delta has been fined before, in 2003, and due to those fines they became one of the industry's prime leaders in customer service and advancements in technology for travelers with disabilities.  They had one of the first disability advisory boards and raked in high ratings among travelers in this niche.
 
Thankfully, a large percentage of the fine (no matter the amount) is always rolled back into the solutions for the access problems at hand, the fines seem excessive.  Although I travel with someone who uses a wheelchair and whose rights have been regularly violated, the fines still seems excessive. 
 
In the ten years we have traveled together, my husband's wheelchair has been broken four times, his shower chair has been broken twice, his right to stow his wheelchair in the on-board closet or in the backrow seat has been violated more times than I can count, our service animal has been denied boarding, and we have had to smile in the face of some of the worst customer service I have ever seen.
 
In lieu of calling the feds in to slap one of those hefty fines on any of airlines who have caused these injustices (none of which were Delta), we have tried to help both the industry and the consumer negotiate change.  Since our company opened its doors in 2004 we have advocated for the rights of travelers with disabilities, educated our readers on traveling with a disability, and helped the market understand why this is a viable one to honor. Since 2008 we have been a part of the Continental Airlines' Customers with Disabilities Advisory Board, and since 2009 we have helped the Open Doors Organization train the airlines on handling and stowing adaptive and mobility equipment as well as training their Complaints Resolution Official (CROs), which the DOT has required to have at all airports for several years now.
 
While all of this is fulfilling, the mountain is still so much taller than the clouds, the summit seemingly always out of both view and reach.  Fining the airlines will help fix some of the immediate issues, that is until they all go bankrupt from it or from the never-ending gas spikes, whichever comes first.  To me,  there HAS to be a better solution from the DOT, starting with not holding the airlines responsible for how accessible the airports are.
 
Take this comparison:  when the ADA went into effect in 1990, the government stepped in to help the National Parks System (NPS) install equal access at nearly 400 locations across the United States, some of which were so grossly out of compliance the fixes would incur hundreds of thousands of dollars to provide the equal access.  During a decade when the country had a some reserve in its pockets to do so, this daunting task was easily funded. There were a few law suits that helped spur the project, but in general, the system was improved with grants, donations, and federal funding, and the NPS still gets a lot of props for their quick resolution to its many violations to the ADA at the time.
 
Flash forward; it's now twenty years post-ADA.  The country's reserves are nothing but sawdust on the federal bank floors, and (no) thanks to 911, the once-booming airline industry is choking on what little fumes are left at the bottom of each $80 barrel of oil.  Their problems are much bigger than equal access, despite the 55 million Americans with disabilities who desperately require it. Their problems are much bigger than shoddy customer service, which affects each and every traveler, American or foreign, disabled or not.
 
As with our insurance system, this system is desperately flawed beyond repair.  At some point one airline could easily go bankrupt (perhaps for the second time) as a result of these fines.  While the accessibility fixes are for the great benefit of the $13billion industry that makes up the travelers with disabilities market (of which my family will also personally benefit) the DOT is growing fat again on the strict rules they now apply to a deteriorating industry. 
 
I implore you readers to help us think about a better solution.  A solution that still honors the importance of serving all customers equally, but doesn't cause this collapsing industry to fold under the weight of these fines. A solution that is more innovative than punitive, and encourages further innovation.  Because while I do believe that equality is what our country was founded on, and equal access is mandatory, I don't believe that millions of dollars in fines will ever solve the gross lack of customer service that I see prevelent in all industries in this country.  We have to change our attitidues in general, not bleed the airlines dry.
 
 
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Australian government is advised by the Aviation Access Working Group (AAWG). 

The AAWG was established to reduce the discrimination against people with a disability by industry co-operation instead of using the big stick approach of legislation to force the issue

The AAWG first met in February 2009. One of the key deliverables of the AAWG was the publishing by all airlines in Australia a Disability Access Facilitation Plan. The date for the publication of those plans was 1 July 2010. So far only Qantas has complied and published their plan.

Read more:


http://travability.travel/blogs/aawg.html



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The Warrior Sailing Project aims to establish an adaptive sailing program for wounded warriors with a historic sailboat namedHoliday.Holidaysail.jpg.w300h397.jpg


 
The proposed first Warrior Sailing Project vessel:   
        
    The "Holiday", is a custom built, one of a kind, Sparkman and Stevens design 42 foot Sloop (hull # 638). She was laid-up ½ of the way restored almost 30 years at Nimphius Boat Inc., in Neshkoro Wisconsin (original builders). In April 2010, she was moved to Yacht Management Services in Gurnee, IL., where she will complete her restoration and re-fit...

 Because of her history in Chicago, the re-launching of the Holiday provides a unique publicity opportunity to promote the Warrior Sailing Project. Because the Holiday is made entirely of wood (oak, teak and mahogany), she is extraordinarily amenable to the modifications that will be necessary to transform her into a disabled accessible therapy boat.  As opposed to the traditional sailing dinghies used in youth sailing programs, the Holiday has a full keel which allows for a large, comfortable cabin, and a stable sail. She has a large cockpit as compared to traditional sailing vessels of the same size to accommodate many passengers. Her position high up from the water, makes the experience feel much safer and more appealing to novice sailors.

More on the project:
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What Does Qantas say?

Qantas Airlines disability policy:

Adoro teatro e estimulo meus filhos a desenvolver esse gosto. Desde que eram pequenininhos, procuro peças adequadas à sua idade e vamos assistir juntos. Acho que parte da magia está na espera pela apresentação e, desta vez, fomos ansiosos assistir Cinderela, um de seus contos de fadas preferidos. Confesso que é um dos meus preferidos também.

No site do Teatro Ressurreição (http://www.teatroressurreicao.com.br/), onde a peça estava em cartaz neste final de semana, consta que há acessibilidade para pessoas "especiais". Ao visitar a página do teatro, me incomodei com a terminologia inadequada e não resisti: mandei um e mail sugerindo melhorar o texto, utilizando "pessoas com deficiência". Mal sabia que este incomodo não seria nada perto do que estava por vir.

Como faço por costume, me certifiquei do acesso num telefonema em que a atendente confirmou que o espaço era todo acessível para cadeirantes. Então, fui tranqüila com meus dois filhos de 3 anos e meio, minha sobrinha de cinco, minha mãe e a babá.

Cheguei com antecedência, uma hora antes do inicio do espetáculo, e aí os problemas começaram acontecer. Na entrada do teatro havia um degrau. Sim, um único degrau, mas o suficiente para impedir minha entrada. Pedi para a babá perguntar ao funcionário lá dentro onde estava a entrada acessível, pois não me passava pela cabeça que não houvesse, já que eu tinha me certificado disso antes. Um segurança chegou para me explicar que aquele ali era "o único degrau", mas que ele me ajudaria a subir. Cadeiras de rodas motorizadas são pesadas, não é tão simples levantá-las... primeiro porque se a cadeira virar, eu me machuco e quem está me ajudando também pode se machucar. Depois porque a cadeira pode quebrar. Mas, ponderei, eu já estava ali... o degrau não era tão alto. Calculei os riscos e aceitei a ajuda.

Na bilheteria, outro problema. O funcionário informou que o lugar reservado para cadeirantes fica no fundo do teatro. Não havia espaço para que eu ficasse perto das crianças. Enquanto eu e minha mãe discutíamos com a funcionária, Mariana avisou que precisava ir ao banheiro. A babá a acompanhou até o saguão do teatro, um espaço confortável com ar condicionado, com quatro degraus altos na entrada. E como vou entrar no saguão para aguardar a peça?

Laura, uma moça linda e simpática que trabalha como estagiária no teatro não sabia mais o que fazer. Ela me explicou que o acesso ao teatro é feito por uma entrada lateral, um corredor de serviço usado para passagem de técnicos de cenário, figurino e elenco. Visivelmente chateada e constrangida, ela foi se informar mais. Voltou com o segurança Edson, outro fofo que tentou me ajudar. Ele sugeriu a outra entrada por onde, segundo ele, havia "apenas um degrau" para se chegar ao saguão. Descemos o degrau da primeira entrada, fomos pela rua até a segunda entrada onde havia um degrau igual ao primeiro. Subimos de novo. Então, vi o tal degrau para o saguão. Tinha uns 40 cm de altura, impossível. A essa altura, eu via meus filhos lá dentro com a minha mãe que me olhava aflita. Algumas pessoas que observavam tudo começaram a se manifestar, outras me reconheceram por causa do meu trabalho e se aproximavam para me cumprimentar, enquanto eu tentava raciocinar para decidir o que fazer.

Eu não ia fazer meus filhos e minha mãe ficarem comigo embaixo do sol forte daquele horário, aguardando do lado de fora do teatro. Eu até esperaria sozinha, mas se eu pudesse... pelo menos, estar ao lado deles para assistir a peça.  Isso também não seria possível. Eu já estava nervosa e vendo a situação piorar, virar um tumulto. Se eu estivesse sozinha ou acompanhada só de adultos, talvez continuasse a briga. Mas, eu levei as crianças para assistir Cinderela e não queria estragar o passeio deles.

Acenei para minha mãe trazer meus filhos e minha sobrinha. Eles desceram os degraus e me ouviram explicar que eu ia esperá-los em casa. Minha filha e minha sobrinha lamentaram com um "ahhhhh...", mas meu filho questionou severamente: "Por que mamãe?"

- Filho por que não dá para a mamãe entrar, você está vendo...

Então, a conversa ficou séria.

- É por que você anda de cadeira de rodas?

- Não, filho, é por que aqui tem esses degraus.

- Mamãe, é proibido entrar pessoas de cadeiras de rodas nesse teatro?

- Não, Mateus. É proibido ter degraus no teatro.

- Então, eles precisam consertar!

- A mamãe vai trabalhar para isso.

Percebi a indignação das pessoas que assistiram as perguntas do meu filho. Não havia o que fazer. Eu queria acabar com aquilo. Queria que eles se divertissem e fui contornando a situação até que eles entraram felizes com minha mãe e a babá.

Voltei para casa de taxi, chorando de raiva e tristeza. Não chorei por mim, mas pela decepção deles, pela injustiça. Eu comprei ingressos de um teatro que se dizia com acessibilidade. Fiz tudo certo, confirmei por telefone e cheguei antes para não ter problema. Fiquei pensando se eles não sabem o que é acessibilidade ou se mentem para as pessoas. Pior que não ter acesso foi mentir que tinham, pois me obrigaram a viver com meus filhos a cena que eu tenho evitado e adiado desde que eles nasceram.

O relógio parecia parado. O tempo não passava. Enquanto os esperava voltar, ficava simulando mentalmente outros jeitos de reagir, tentando interpretar se eu havia feito o melhor. Eu detesto armar barraco e acho que não valeria a pena expor as crianças ainda mais.

Eles chegaram entusiasmados, contando detalhes da peça. Até que...

- Ah, mamãe, tem outra coisa! Eu pedi para a fada da Cinderela te ajudar a fazer desaparecer os degraus. Ela disse que vai ajudar.

Me desculpe o desabafo, mas é que precisamos de muitas fadas para concretizar o "...e foram felizes para sempre".

Varinhas de condão estão disponíveis no Decreto 5296.

 

Flávia Cintra
Cel: 11 9968-8974 
Nextel: 11 7725-0093 ID 55*129*4406
www.maecadeirante.zip.net

Seth K Addi wrote the following article for Ghanians. He did not know that it would resonate around the world:

Ghana is among the few countries in Africa that have taken affirmative action in favour of marginalised groups at a higher level with a focus on persons with disabilities. These efforts have resulted in laws and policies promoting equality, inclusion and participation of persons with disabilities in society.
The Government of the Republic of Ghana back in 1996 developed the National Disability Policy leading to the passage on the National Disability Law, Act 715 of 2006 aims at promoting equal opportunities, enhance, empower and seek the protection of the rights of persons with disabilities irrespective of gender, age, or type of disability. 
However, advocacy, implementation and supervision of disability programmes are severely lacking. Accessibility is one of the key elements addressed in these policies and laws. Due to limited enforcement of disability laws, absence of National Accessibility Standards and lack of knowledge about the rights of persons with disabilities, laws and policies on accessibility have been largely overlooked.

Full article:
http://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/NewsArchive/artikel.php?ID=203500&goback=.gde_1291067_member_44340543

Other articles on disability:

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Animation of a turboprop

Image via Wikipedia

We all know that the story of DOT levying the largest fine of its type against Delta Airlines has run its news cycle lifespan, right? It's old news, below the fold, just another PR blip run through the under-wing turbo prop food processor like a bird caught midflight. 

So, now maybe it is time to see what all the meowing is about down in the cargo hold and the blogoshpere since the lions of the mainstream press has ceased its fearless roar.

Has there been some clarity added through what bloggers have had to say on the topic?

Access NZ

Access Anything

Emerging Horizon

Broken Clay Journal

Travels with Pain

Flyer Talk

LA Times Blog

Transportation Nation

Disabled World

Disability Scoop




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Diagnosing Delta's Dilemma

Doctor Spin: "I am happy to tell you that the patient has survived. The fever peaked in 48 hours as predicted. You may now return to business as usual. Billing has arranged to discount your $2.5 million fee to $75,000 payable in 31 days."
***
Delta Airlines received the largest fine in history for a non-safety related violation from the 
"Fly Delta Air Lines" marker

Image via Wikipedia

Department of Transportation (DOT) this week. We thought it might be interesting to imagine what might be showing up on their Damage Control Dashboard.

We set Zemanta's digital radar out to track the flight path of the DOT Consent Order, Shepard Center's friend-of-vendor press release, and Delta's pronouncement of clear skies ahead.


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Inclusion in Travel at PeterGreenberg.com

Peter Greenburg Worldwide Travel has several articles on travel with a disability. The latest is on travel in the Gulf Coast region:


Gulf Coast Accessible TravelThe Gulf Coast is a favorite destination for families, but finding a wheelchair-accessible beach retreat can be a challenge. 

Barbara & Jim Twardowski, RN, share their tips on finding accessible accommodations and experiences.
 

Row after row of condominiums line the Gulf Coast. Most of the units are owned by individuals and few are configured to meet the needs of someone who uses a wheelchair. Unlike a hotel, homes do not fall under the accessibility guidelines mandated by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
  
Condos, B&Bs and private homes can be good alternatives to a hotel--just be prepared to do some investigating prior to confirming a reservation.

Read the whole article:

Other articles at PeterGreenberg.com:

Get Away to Maui?

mactitleFINAL2.jpg

There has been a cancellation at the wheelchair accessible condo with roll in shower on Maui here:

http://www.facebook.com/l/b782cpzK6cDeUcMGtUqnZx0_gyw/www.mauiaccessiblecondo.com


It is available from Thursday April 28, 2011 to Thursday May 12, 2011.


Contact: bruce@mauiaccessiblecondo.com


eHow brings Inclusive Tourism mre and more mainstram with aricles like this one. Thanks to Shirley Barber for this link:


How to See the Great Wall of China in a Wheelchair

Find wheelchair accessibility at the Badaling section of the Great Wall.
Find wheelchair accessibility at the Badaling section of the Great Wall.

Stretching for thousands of miles across the Chinese countryside, from the Gobi Desert to the Bohai Sea, the Great Wall of China remains one of the greatest manmade wonders of the world. Built over 2,000 years of imperial rule, the Wall is comprised of a series of fortifications, towers and stone barriers. Thanks to accommodations brought about by the 2008 Paralympics in Beijing, wheelchair-bound travelers can now access the popular Badaling section of the Great Wall just north of the capital.



Read more: How to See the Great Wall of China in a Wheelchair | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/how_6465248_see-great-wall-china-wheelchair.html#ixzz1DzeykNK3

An Interview with Pattie Moore on UD

For an interview giving insight into Universal Design:

Internationally known gerontologist and designer Pattie Moore says good design is like pornography: "You can't really define it, but you know it when you see it."

But one thing she knows for sure is that if someone can't use a product--whether it's a wounded soldier opening a door or your grandmother peeling a carrot--that's a design problem. Universal design, which is an approach to the design of products and environments that makes them usable by people with the widest possible range of abilities, addresses this.

For three years in her 20s, Moore traveled North America disguised as women in their 80s to learn about the challenges facing older people. Since then, her design clients have included OXOHerman Miller HealthcareAT&TCorning Glass and3M. Today, she is on the road about 240 days a year, lecturing, consulting and working on new projects around the world. Last fall, her community rehab unit (Independence Way) opened at Washington DC Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

Source:

http://www.smartplanet.com/people/blog/pure-genius/early-oxo-designer-why-our-design-still-excludes-many/5533/

Fundación ONCE participa en el II Foro Internacional de Diseño Universal


- Los días 17 y 18 de febrero en Málaga 

MÁLAGA, 13 (SERVIMEDIA)



La Fundación ONCE participará en el II Foro Internacional de Diseño Universal, un encuentro especializado donde organizaciones del ámbito privado y público se reunirán para intercambiar experiencias y realizar contactos, identificar oportunidades de colaboración y conocer las últimas novedades del sector del "diseño para todos".

Este Foro, que se celebrará los días 17 y 18 de febrero en Málaga, engloba una selectiva zona expositiva; la celebración del 2º Congreso Internacional de Diseño Universal, con la presencia de importantes ponentes nacionales e internacionales expertos en este ámbito, y el innovador Espacio de Experiencias donde más de una veintena de administraciones públicas y empresas privadas presentan sus iniciativas implantadas para la mejora de la calidad de vida e igualdad de oportunidades.

El presidente de la Fundación ONCE, Miguel Carballeda, intervendrá en la inauguración del 2º Congreso Internacional de Diseño Universal, que contará también con la participación de la consejera para la Igualdad y Bienestar Social de la Junta de Andalucía, Micaela Navarro; el alcalde de Málaga, Francisco Manuel de la Torre, y la presidenta del Cermi Andalucía, Mª Ángeles Cózar. 

Además, distintos expertos en materia de accesibilidad y diseño universal de la Fundación ONCE participarán en las ponencias y mesas redondas que tendrán lugar durante el Congreso. 

Al margen del apoyo de la Fundación ONCE, este II Foro Internacional de Diseño Universal cuenta con el respaldo de instituciones como la Junta de Andalucía, el Ayuntamiento de Málaga, el Ceapat y el Cermi, al que acompañarán empresas de primer nivel en la zona expositiva.

Fuente:

International Disability Rights

On Thursday, February 17, 2011, Judith Heumann, Special Advisor for International Disability Rights, will hold a conversation with David Morrissey, Executive Director of the United States International Council on Disabilities, on International Disability Rights. The discussion will be moderated by Cheryl Benton, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of Public Affairs, and streamed live on DipNote, the Department of State's official blog, at 3:00 p.m. (EST). 

Feb 17 2011.jpg
This is the tenth in the Conversations with America video series coordinated by the Bureau of Public Affairs, in which the State Department's senior leadership hosts conversations live, online, with leaders of prominent non-governmental organizations. Discussion topics include foreign policy and global issues and provide a candid view of how leaders from civil society engage the Department on pressing foreign policy issues.


What Goes Up Must Come Down!

For those who ever wondered how to take some of the steeper wheelchair ramps we see around the world Aaron Fotheringham introduces two new techniques for coming down and Erica Davis demonstrates the way to get back up:

 

People who are 19 years old and over, have a disability and live in Arizona or one of Phoenix's nine sister cities are eligible for the second annual Phoenix Sister Cities International Competition for Writers with Disabilities  The deadline for submitting entries is April 15, 2011.

 

Cash awards of $500, $300 and $150 will be granted to the first, second and third place winners

respectively.  Poems must be written in English, no longer than 32 lines and inspired by the theme "One World, One Place, One Home."  Each writer may submit multiple entries. 

 

According to Mary Jane Trunzo, Acting Chair  of  the  Phoenix Sister Cities Disability Awareness Committee, this year's contest theme signifies that despite differences among people,   we all inhabit the same earth and we all are exposed to the specific challenges of our personal lives.   If we are to preserve our world, we need to seek common ground to either reconcile or accept our differences.  This contest provides an opportunity for persons with disabilities to unleash their passion and write poetry that addresses approaches to achieving unity."

 

A panel of  judges will evaluate entries on the basis of theme interpretation, composition and originality.  Included on the panel are: Jed Allen, an instructor of creative writing at Phoenix College, Dwayne Hartford, a professional playwright with Childsplay Inc. in Tempe Arizona and Jean Moriki of the Phoenix Mayor's Commission on Disability Issues.

 

The grand prize winner will receive a $500 cash award. Cash awards will also be given to 2nd place ($300) and 3rd place ($150) winners. All entrants will receive a "Certificate of Participation" and recognition will be given to those entries that placed first, second and third. Poems will also be published on the Phoenix Sister Cities Website.

 

An award ;ceremony to recognize the winners of the competition will be held the evening of  Friday, June 10, 2011 in downtown Phoenix. 

 

A table providing more details on contest requirements and an application form is posted on the Phoenix Sister Cities Website at http://www.phoenixsistercities.com.   For  questions about the contest, please e-mail MJ Trunzo at mjtrunzo@mindspring.com or call 602-224-0202.

 

Fundada em 2007, a ONG ADAPTSURF promove a Inclusão e Integração Social das pessoas com deficiência ou mobilidade reduzida, garantindo igualdade de oportunidades e acesso ao lazer, esporte e cultura, através do contato direto com a natureza. Pioneira no Rio de Janeiro, desenvolve Projetos e Ações em acessibilidade das praias, surf adaptado e preservação do ecossistema costeiro. 

Em 2010, realizamos atividades em diversas áreas, sempre divulgando e desenvolvendo o surf para pessoas com deficiência e lutando pela acessibilidade e preservação das praias. Abaixo, apresentamos matérias do site http://www.adaptsurf.org.br com algumas das iniciativas promovidas ao longo do ano passado:

Lançamento da primeira esteira Mobi-Mat no Brasil, exclusividade da ONG ADAPTSURF

Vencedora do III Prêmio Sentidos em São Paulo

Participação em Feiras, Congressos e Palestras em todo Brasil

Elaboração do Primeiro Guia de Acessibilidade das Praias do Rio, o GUIA ADAPTSURF

Realização do Primeiro Circuito de Surf para pessoas com deficiência do Brasil, o Circuito ADAPTSURF

Participação pelo segundo ano consecutivo no Viradão Esportivo da CUFA

Participação no Dia Mundial de Limpeza das Praias

Participação em campeonatos internacionais de surf WQS, pelo terceiro ano consecutivo

Participação como convidada pela ABNT no Grupo de Estudos ISO Praias

Realização do Primeiro Desfile de Moda Inclusiva na Praia do Leblon

Participação no Documentário sobre surf adaptado ALOHA! no Guarujá

ONG ADAPTSURF é formada por profissionais voluntários não remunerados, totalmente sem fins lucrativos, recebe doações e conta com o apoio da Prefeitura do Rio, Federação de Surf do Rio de Janeiro, ABNT, Contempos, Kpaloa, Nike 6.0 entre outros.

Em nome de todos os beneficiados, agradeço a todos pelo incentivo e apoio.


Um grande abraço de toda equipe.

Dr. Luiz Phelipe Netto Monteiro Nobre
Conselho Diretor - Fisioterapia
-- 
ADAPTSURF - Instituto Adaptação e Surf
Integração, Acessibilidade e Preservação
http://www.adaptsurf.org.br
contato@adaptsurf.org.br
adaptsurf@hotmail.com
21 2239 1737 / 21 9305 7707

America catches up?

From Metropolis:


112973

When news of an ideas competition, focused on designing a neighborhood based on the principles of Universal Design and sustainability, arrived recently I was jazzed. Since the Americans with Disabilities Act was passed by Congress two decades ago, we've seen a lot well meaning or uninformed attempts  and some really annoying remedies (like the Braille on hotel room doors: how does a sight-impaired person find this little protrusion?), and some worthwhile things like elegantly pitched curb cuts and architecturally appealing ramps. But there's so much left of be done! And so I was happy to see that competition organizers and advisors--Brad Benjamin, chair of the AIA's 2011 Committee on Design (COD), Anne Schopf, partner and director of design at Mahlum, and Josh Safdie, director of the IHCDStudio(Institute for Human Centered Design)--decided to tackle the problem of creating neighborhoods where people of every size and age, every ability and disability can call home, a truly supportive and humane home. So I asked Josh Safdie to tell me more about the big idea behind the completion, the organizers' hopes for improving the cityscape, and the practice of architecture.  

 Susan S. Szenasy: The 2011 Ideas AIA/YAF/COD Ideas Competition is centered on the principles of Universal Design, in the larger context of environmental and social sustainability. I say it's about time! Tell us why you're focusing on the 2020 Games' Olympic Village in Tokyo?

 Josh Safdie: Well, we say it's about time, too!  The idea of focusing on Universal Design within the larger context of environmental and social sustainability is one that has been broadly embraced in other countries and cultures, but which has been slow to gain momentum here in the US.  However, I think the design professions in this country are poised to enter into a period of "Sustainability 2.0"...

Read the entire article here:

Salberg's problems began shortly before takeoff on her return flight. As one of her nurses lugged a 25-pound battery on board, she was stopped and told that the pilot needed to inspect it.
Salberg, who was already in her seat, said she couldn't tell the flight crew she already had airline approval because she didn't have the device she needs to speak. Crew members were shown the compliance letter and told Salberg had flown previously, but those reassurances were brushed off.
Instead of a direct flight, which Salberg had paid extra for, her group was put on a flight to Atlanta, delaying their arrival in Minneapolis by about five hours. The delay meant Salberg couldn't drink anything because she isn't able to use a public restroom...

Read:

More disabled travelers complaining about airlines



Memorial da Inclusão (Portuguese)

O Memorial da Inclusão: os Caminhos da Pessoa com Deficiência foi inaugurado em 3 de dezembro de 2009. Em 2010, cresceu um pouco mais com dois formatos para itinerância nos municípios de São Paulo. 
  
Temos agora a honra de convidá-lo para o lançamento da versão virtual e também para a primeira mostra de acessibilidade dos museus do Estado de São Paulo, em foco no Museu 
Casa de Portinari e Pinacoteca do Estado,  em um espaço especialmente preparado para este fim dentro do Memorial da Inclusão. 

Os lançamentos ocorrerão no dia 24/02/2011, às 17:00h, no Memorial da Inclusão, sede da Secretaria de Estado dos Direitos da Pessoa com Deficiência. 
Av. Auro Soares de Moura Andrade, 564 - portão 10
Barra Funda - São Paulo - SP
 

Walt Balenovich tells all in his interview: Walt reads from his book, "Travels in a Blue Wheelchair.":

Accessibility is Not Inclusion

With gratitude to New Mobility magazine, Monica Guy, and Landscape Structures Inc., and Mão na Roda this article is making the rounds - and starting some conversations.


"How to Rent Travel Companions"

Liz Scott follows up on her experience at the SATH congress with her reflections on traveling with a hidden disability:


Whenever possible, I certainly prefer to travel with a buddy. My fiance is my favorite traveling companion, though I also love to drag friends and family members along whenever I can. Part of my problem when I had that little mishap in Atlanta last week was that I was alone. If I'd had a companion, at the very least I wouldn't have caused such a ruckus at the airport.

Some people with hidden disabilities shouldn't try to travel alone...

Full article:

http://travelswithpain.com/2011/02/04/what-i-learned-at-sath-part-2-how-to-rent-travel-companions/

ENTER2011 - Conference opening

A video on ICT in Inclusive Tourism - eAccess+ - by Ivor Anbrose:



 

Travel, Disability, and ESL

Travel with a disability includes those who study abroad. Thanks to MIUSA and the National Clearinghouse on Disability and Exchange students with disabilities are being recognized:

Reaching ESL and International Education Professionals

In the coming months, the NCDE will present at two national conferences:
The Association of International Education Administrators (AIEA) in
February, and the Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages
(TESOL) in March. Both sessions will answer: How can educational
professionals expand their knowledge and experience to equally include
students with and without disabilities?

The AIEA session "Leadership Solutions: Including Students with
Disabilities in International Education" will include MIUSA CEO Susan
Sygall, University of California, Berkeley Disability Services Director Paul
Hippolitus, Institute of International Education's Vice President for
Student Exchanges Mary Kirk, and U.S. Fulbright Student and Fulbright
Ambassador Franz Knupfer. http://aieaworld.org/events/2011-conf-registration.htm

The TESOL session "Considerations for Teaching Students with Learning,
Vision or Other Disabilities" will include Stephanie Gray of NCDE, Kelly
McMinn of University of Oregon American English Institute, Amy Reid of
World Learning, and Pat Mytkowicz of Curry College, Program for the
Advancement of Learning for Multilingual Students.

Are you Magic?

Pauline Victoria Aughe has a new YouTube Channel. I particularly liked her stories about kids and travel.

Her web site:

www.LivingBeyondLimitations.com

Accessible ICT

News items from the latest Wireless RERC newsletter:


Disability Advisor Outlines White House Policy

01.24.2011 - A recent keynote address given by White House Disability Advisor Kareem Dale outlined the Administration's views and actions on disability policy.  The speech was given at the Annual Meeting of the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities on January 19, 2011.  Several positive steps toward the creation of inclusive and effective disability policy were mentioned, such as the recent passage of the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act and the subsequent FCC committee appointments mandated by the Act.  Dale acknowledged that work remains in the disability policy field, including a concerned effort by the federal government to hire more people with disabilities, partly to set a positive example for other sectors of employment. He concluded that the current Administration is prepared to tackle the challenges faced to promote disability rights.    

[Source:  American Association of People with Disabilities]

 

Additional Information

 

Emergency Communications Advisory Committees Announced

12.07.10 - FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski announced the creation of two advisory committees on emergency communications and disability access.  The first committee is the Emergency Access Advisory Committee (EAAC), which will be charged with assisting in the advancement of accessibility for NG 9-1-1 technologies.  The purpose of this committee is to provide recommendations from its members to strengthen and improve access to emergency services.  The second committee, the Video Programming and Emergency Access Advisory Committee (VPEAAC), is charged with ensuring that video-related technologies are accessible.  Some areas of interest for this committee include video captioning, accessible emergency information on a variety of platforms, and closed captioning.  Both committees' meetings are open to the public.  The FCC recently announced that the EAAC will hold a meeting on February 11, 2011 at 10:30 AM - 5:00 PM (EST) in Washington, DC.  The first VPEAAC meeting has not been announced yet.

[Source: FCC]

 

Additional Information

 

FCC Enforcement Advisory

01.12.2011 - The FCC has taken action against wireless service providers that are not meeting the Commission's requirements for hearing aid compatibility.  The providers are required to file on their compliance status with the FCC's hearing aid compatibility requirements no later than January 18, 2011.  A failure to do so could result in fines.  The FCC's willingness to pursue fines against wireless service providers determined to be in noncompliance suggests a greater emphasis on disability access enforcement by the Commission.  In previous cases, wireless service providers have pled a lack of awareness of the pertinent laws; however, the FCC does not acknowledge this as a valid excuse.  Fines for violations of laws pertaining to "digital wireless handset deployment" can be up to $15,000 per violation, and violating "web site posting requirements" can be up to $6,000 per violation. 

[Source: FCC]

 

Additional Information

Global Access News Travel E-Zine

For years Marti has quietly been publishing quality tips on travel with a disability through Global Access News Travel E-Zine

If you are not yet subscribed don't hesitate:

Global Access News welcomes your travel reports, tips and comments at clearpath@cox.net 

Travel E-Zine Archive athttp://www.globalaccessnews.com/travel_ezine_archive.htm

================================

1. HOLIDAYS IN A WHEELCHAIR

Britain-based Michael, Editor of Holidays in a Wheelchair, offers a new entry to the accessible travel network. His site focuses on disabled people sharing accessible and inaccessible travel experiences to help their peers. The six-month old web site offers wheelchair-friendly accommodation and services abroad. Learn more at http://www.holidaysinawheelchair.com

================================

2. ACCESSIBLE TRAVEL NETHERLANDS

Veroniek Maat MSc shared the news of her new web site, Accessible Travel Netherlands, now on-line at http://www.accessibletravelnl.com/ The site provides wheelchair accessible travel reports and information about access to hotels and museums. Currently on-line are excellent articles, including a report on visiting the Rembrandt Museum. Contact Veroniek Maat MSc at vmaat@accessibletravelNL.com

================================

3. ACCESS LONDON BLOG

While Claire Baber lives outside London, she visits the city frequently where she uses a blend of wheelchair, scooter and crutches to get around. She recently launched her new blog, Access London. There she features disabled access information, reviews and interviews designed to help disabled people successfully navigate the legendary, site-packed city. Learn more at http://www.accesslondon.blogspot.com/

================================

4. BARCELONA: WHEELCHAIR ACCESSIBLE TRANSPORTATION

Federico Angulo Director, of Mundo Accessible provides adapted transport in Barcelona, Spain.His service covers Barcelona Airport, Gerona and Reus, Costa Brava, Port Aventura, Andorra,city tours, etc. Visit www.mundoaccesible.net or Contact Angulo at sutaxiadaptado@hotmail.com

================================

Kansas City: UD and Green

Ellefson said his agency wanted the building renovation to incorporate universal design standards to make it accessible to all people, as well as green, energy-saving features.

An empty building at 3710 Main St. that once housed a textile factory is to be renovated by The Whole Person, a social service agency that serves disabled people.

The agency, which has 2,000 clients throughout the metropolitan area, is planning to start work this summer on its $5 million redevelopment of the historic Goodenow Textile Co. building in midtown Kansas City.


Read more: http://www.kansascity.com/2011/01/31/2623563/agency-that-helps-disabled-people.html#ixzz1Cjb8gVgh

Read more: http://www.kansascity.com/2011/01/31/2623563/agency-that-helps-disabled-people.html#ixzz1CjauGPyk

 Portadores de necessidades especiais têm passe livre no transporte intermunicipal

O Governo do Paraná aprovou o transporte gratuito para portadores de necessidades especiais e doenças crônicas em ônibus que operam linhas intermunicipais de passageiros. Os beneficiados devem comprovar renda igual ou inferior a 1,5 salário mínimo nacional

 O cadeirante José Elias Almeida Bulhões, 50 anos, que vive em Paraquara, foi o primeiro a receber o passe livre no Paraná. Ele recebeu a carteira das mãos do secretário dos Transportes, Mario Stamm Junior. Por causa da lesão medular traumática, Bulhões viaja a Curitiba todos os dias para fazer tratamento no Hospital de Reabilitação, no Cabral. 

 "É histórico e emocionante saber que a partir de agora podemos resolver qualquer coisa em outro município sem pagar passagem. Para quem como eu não tem condições financeiras, isso é fantástico", afirmou Bulhões. 

 Ele acrescentou que o passe livre também é um incentivo à prática esportiva pelos portadores de deficiência que participam de competições intermunicipais. "As prefeituras, normalmente, fornecem estadia e alimentação. Agora, o Governo viabiliza o passe livre para permitir que viajemos", disse. 

 O secretário lembrou que é função do Governo atender às necessidades dos portadores de deficiências motoras. "Ao emitir a carteira do passe livre, o DER complementa um trabalho que envolve praticamente todos os órgãos públicos gestores de política social municipal e estadual". 

 COMO OBTER O DOCUMENTO

Para obter a credencial, o interessado deve procurar o órgão gestor da política social da cidade em que vive, para avaliação sócio-econômica. Na sequência, é preciso realizar avaliação no Sistema Único de Saúde (SUS) para obtenção de laudo médico. 

 

Obtida a documentação necessária, é preciso preencher formulário de requerimento do Passe Livre Intermunicipal, no site da Coordenadoria dos Direitos da Cidadania (www.codic.pr.gov.br). Em seguida, a documentação precisa ser encaminhada ao Conselho Estadual dos Direitos da Pessoa com Deficiência, juntamente com uma fotografia 3x4 e uma fotocópia do documento de identidade. 

 

O Coede remete a documentação ao Departamento de Estradas de Rodagem (DER), que expede e envia a credencial para o endereço cadastrado no formulário. 

 

De posse da carteira, o usuário precisa reservar passagem nas linhas intermunicipais rodoviárias com antecedência de 24 horas. Nas linhas metropolitanas, o documento de isenção deve ser apresentado diretamente ao cobrador. A isenção de tarifa é válida também para um acompanhante, desde que comprovada a necessidade. 

 

A medida cumpre os decretos estaduais nº 4.742/09 e 6.179/10, e foi aprovada em uma ação conjunta do Conselho Estadual dos Direitos das Pessoas com Deficiência (COEDE), em parceria com as secretarias dos Transportes (SETR), da Justiça e da Cidadania (SEJU), da Educação (SEED), da Saúde (SESA) e do Trabalho e Assistência Social (SETP). 

 

O benefício é garantido aos portadores de insuficiência renal crônica, em terapia renal substitutiva, câncer em tratamento por quimioterapia ou radioterapia, transtornos mentais graves em tratamento continuado, portadores de HIV, mucoviscidade em atendimento continuado, hemofilia e esclerose múltipla.

 

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