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Physical Access

This is sometimes referred to as “Barrier Assessment”. This involves identifying structural barriers, such a stairs, that prevent a person with a disability from entering a building or part of the building.  This is often remedied by a ramp or an elevator.

Access to public transportation is increasingly important.  Many trains and busses are now equipped with ramps or lifts to allow a wheelchair to enter and exit the vehicle.  This in turn gives disabled individuals access many goods, services or jobs that were previously unavailable to them.

Sadly, most new and existing homes lack accessibility. There is an initiative to incorporate zero step entries, wider doors, and hallways to accommodate wheelchairs. This would greatly increase access.

Other barriers affect the blind.  The use of Braille information in elevators enables the blind to select the correct floor to exit.  Texture change in the pavement alerts them of a change in the walking surface ahead.  This is mainly used for ramps.  A blind person with a cane can sense the change and make adjustments.

Hard of hearing persons (most of us over 50) can find access to volume  controlled receivers for auditoriums and movie theaters to amplify the sound and thereby increase understanding and enjoyment of the presentation.

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Frequently Asked:

When is barrier assessment indicated?

Any time a new business opens, there should be an assessment of accessibility for  the disabled population. That way changes can be made before complaints begin.

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