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Source: (consider it) Thread: Accessibility
no prophet's flag is set so...

Proceed to see sea
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
quote:
Originally posted by no prophet's flag is set so...:
I was surprised when visiting London that all tube stations were not accessible. This would not be acceptable here. It's an absolute given that any publicly accessible space is accessible.

You know how old some of those stations are?

(The answer is 1863, btw.)

It makes no difference here, it simply has to be made accessible. They do a pretty good job mostly of keeping the architecture matching. In many places, it is necessary to build additional entrances, build elevators on the outside of existing structures etc. There is a tax scheme to compensate private businesses re this. I don't mean to start a pond war, but the time frame for these sorts of changes expired in 1988 in my province, so some places are rather behind.

They've also indicated via Human Rights that accessibility being possible is not sufficient. Accessibility must be with dignity, which means it is not okay for the wheelchair person to have to make special arrangements, find a staff person etc. They call the requirement "substantive equality" where mere "technical compliance" isn't enough. The concept of "universal design" applies, meaning all structures must be equally accessible by all.

"Accessibility should not just be a matter of whether or not it is possible for persons with disabilities to perform tasks, but also whether it is possible to perform tasks in a dignified and easy way." Link

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Out of this nettle, danger, we pluck this flower, safety.
\_(ツ)_/

Posts: 11498 | From: Treaty 6 territory in the nonexistant Province of Buffalo, Canada ↄ⃝' | Registered: Mar 2010  |  IP: Logged
Palimpsest
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# 16772

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One of the things poisoning the well here in the North West is that people have had bad experiences with dogs, not trained service dogs, but "therapy dogs", meaning an untrained pet that someone wants to take everywhere because they have a note from a compliant doctor saying they're a special snowflake who needs their pet.
When said pet misbehaves, people don't know the difference.

Posts: 2990 | From: Seattle WA. US | Registered: Nov 2011  |  IP: Logged
Boogie

Boogie on down!
# 13538

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One thing that really is making life more accessible to blind people is technology. I have several completely blind friends on facebook. We make sure all photos are described, of course. Speech technology is fabulous now on smart phones and tablets.

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Garden. Room. Walk

Posts: 13030 | From: Boogie Wonderland | Registered: Mar 2008  |  IP: Logged
Paul.
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# 37

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quote:
Originally posted by Boogie:
One thing that really is making life more accessible to blind people is technology. I have several completely blind friends on facebook. We make sure all photos are described, of course. Speech technology is fabulous now on smart phones and tablets.

Do you mean you add your own audio descriptions to photos? How do you do this?
Posts: 3689 | From: UK | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
Hiro's Leap

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# 12470

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The London Tube is a hellish place to navigate with a mobility impairment. Only a quarter of stations are step-free, and apparently wheelchairs were actually banned until 1993 for fire safety.

This is only part of the problem. The corridors are narrow, very busy and people move fast - it's difficult to go slower than the crowd. There's also a massive amount of walking. I have a friend with rheumatoid arthritis and she struggles badly down there. A few day's visit is OK but she couldn't work in London any more.

That said, it's hard to see how this can be cured without an astronomical expenditure, and even then, London's so riddled with tunnels, deep foundations, cables etc that there's not necessarily space to improve some sections.

Interesting (and impressive) that Canada is so far head of the UK in terms of access. I've met loads of foreign visitors who felt we were streets ahead of their home countries, so I guess there's a wide spectrum.

Posts: 3418 | From: UK, OK | Registered: Mar 2007  |  IP: Logged
Doc Tor
Deepest Red
# 9748

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quote:
Originally posted by no prophet's flag is set so...:
It makes no difference here, it simply has to be made accessible.

You would have to essentially close a station at a time and take 5 years reboring all the tunnels. For each and every underground station, except the newest ones on the Jubilee and DLR.

It sucks hard not to have full (or even partial) accessibility, but the Tube does still manage to carry one and a quarter billion people every year.

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Forward the New Republic

Posts: 9131 | From: Ultima Thule | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Curiosity killed ...

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# 11770

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When tube stations have additional work done, accessibility (pdf map) is built in. Tottenham Court Road will have lifts when it reopens, Kings Cross St Pancras already does, as do Farringdon, Bank and Earls Court, all of which had work carried out recently. Oxford Circus certainly deserves the exclamation next to the name.

I started paying far more attention when my daughter was in a wheelchair for a time and that continued when I moved The Luggage™ across London regularly getting my daughter to and from university. I certainly wouldn't recommend supporting a wobbly daughter up escalators with one arm and carrying a wheelchair under the other.

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Mugs - Keep the Ship afloat

Posts: 13794 | From: outiside the outer ring road | Registered: Aug 2006  |  IP: Logged
Boogie

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# 13538

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quote:
Originally posted by Paul.:
quote:
Originally posted by Boogie:
One thing that really is making life more accessible to blind people is technology. I have several completely blind friends on facebook. We make sure all photos are described, of course. Speech technology is fabulous now on smart phones and tablets.

Do you mean you add your own audio descriptions to photos? How do you do this?
No - written descriptions, all text is then converted to speech at the other end.

There are phones for the deaf-blind now too, telebraille (and dogs of course, dual trained. If you see a dog with a white and red chequered harness it is a guide dog plus hearing dog)

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Garden. Room. Walk

Posts: 13030 | From: Boogie Wonderland | Registered: Mar 2008  |  IP: Logged
Albertus
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# 13356

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I imagine that if your Facebook friends are anything like mine most of their picture descriptions will be either 'these are my kids' or 'this is my cat'... [Snore]
Posts: 6498 | From: Y Sowth | Registered: Jan 2008  |  IP: Logged
Boogie

Boogie on down!
# 13538

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quote:
Originally posted by Albertus:
I imagine that if your Facebook friends are anything like mine most of their picture descriptions will be either 'these are my kids' or 'this is my cat'... [Snore]

DOG - naturally! [Biased]

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Garden. Room. Walk

Posts: 13030 | From: Boogie Wonderland | Registered: Mar 2008  |  IP: Logged
Fineline
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# 12143

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Describing whatever picture you post is pretty standard in disability-oriented groups and pages on FB - all pictures posted are described in detail, including the colours. Often it's a meme with some quote on it, so the person posting will say what the words are, what colour the words are, and what the background picture is.
Posts: 2375 | From: England | Registered: Dec 2006  |  IP: Logged
Boogie

Boogie on down!
# 13538

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quote:
Originally posted by Curiosity killed ...:

I started paying far more attention when my daughter was in a wheelchair for a time and that continued when I moved The Luggage™ across London regularly getting my daughter to and from university. I certainly wouldn't recommend supporting a wobbly daughter up escalators with one arm and carrying a wheelchair under the other.

I often wonder how older people manage on the underground. My parents were not disabled, but easily tired in later years. There seem to be very few places where they could have had a rest between long walks.

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Garden. Room. Walk

Posts: 13030 | From: Boogie Wonderland | Registered: Mar 2008  |  IP: Logged
Belle Ringer
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# 13379

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quote:
Originally posted by Fineline:
quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:
I accept that you think she was just making a fuss on her husband's behalf, ...You may be dismissing her complaints as preciousness,

Wait - why do you accept that I 'think she was just making a fuss on her husband's behalf'? I didn't say that, and it's not even what I was thinking.

I'm very aware of the reality of hearing problems and auditory processing problems, and the impact they have. The disability he had was real. .. what I am challenging here is that she totally dismissed the difficulties I was having.

Yes, this is how I read it - she wanted her husband's disability honored but Findline's dismissed.

We've had discussions in the past about conflict of disabilities. Amber used to post about conflicts between adjustments for different disabilities.

The first I ran into conflict between disabilities was back in the 70s when they started cutting curbs into slopes so wheelchair riders could travel the sidewalks. Great! But it confused the guide dogs who had been trained to stop at a curb, signaling to the human a step into traffic. No curb, no stop before entering traffic!

Obviously the dogs have been retrained, but it's just an example of taking care of one person's needs blocking another person with different needs.

A handicapped toilet is usually higher because of people with bad knees or transferring from a wheelchair need height. A friend is a wheelchair rider but she is short, the higher toilets are too high and the lower standard toilet stalls to narrow for her wheelchair. Yet, how many different toilets can a place be required to install?

Posts: 5830 | From: Texas | Registered: Jan 2008  |  IP: Logged
Fineline
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# 12143

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quote:
Originally posted by Boogie:
quote:
Originally posted by Curiosity killed ...:

I started paying far more attention when my daughter was in a wheelchair for a time and that continued when I moved The Luggage™ across London regularly getting my daughter to and from university. I certainly wouldn't recommend supporting a wobbly daughter up escalators with one arm and carrying a wheelchair under the other.

I often wonder how older people manage on the underground. My parents were not disabled, but easily tired in later years. There seem to be very few places where they could have had a rest between long walks.
I imagine a lot of people simply avoid it. I've always found the underground difficult, for different reasons, and whenever I've been in London, I've increasingly tried to find ways to avoid the underground - walking, going by bus, etc. Then I moved away to a quieter part of the country so I could avoid London altogether! I think it must be hard for lots of disabilities. I find walking onto a moving thing like an escalator difficult because of visual processing difficulties and poor coordination. Normally, I avoid escalators, or I get onto an escalator very slowly, holding onto the sides tightly, but the underground is so full of people walking fast and pushing past each other that it's hard to do that.

But I agree it's difficult to change the underground system because it's so old, and so it will be a slow process. I noticed when I was living in Canada that buildings and transport were a lot more accessible than in the UK - well, actually, first I simply noticed that I saw a lot more people in wheelchairs than I'd seen in the UK, and then I realised it was because it was easier for people in wheelchairs to access things. And I saw that it was easier in Canada for things to be accessible because everything was so much newer, and there was more space. The streets where wider and straighter, the buildings were newer, bigger and more spacious - everything was more spacious, and more uniform.

Posts: 2375 | From: England | Registered: Dec 2006  |  IP: Logged
Leorning Cniht
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# 17564

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quote:
Originally posted by Fineline:
Describing whatever picture you post is pretty standard in disability-oriented groups and pages on FB - all pictures posted are described in detail, including the colours.

I see this a lot, but it's usually in some filler photo that's added to an article. The purpose of the photo (it'll be a stock photo of a woman looking sad, or a mother and her children, or a police car of whatever) is to provide visual interest so you're not looking at a wall of text. It doesn't add information.

In those cases, for blind people, I wonder whether having the article interrupted by "a picture of a feminine-presenting person wearing a pink top sitting at a desk using a computer" is in any way helpful.

I don't know - I'm not blind - but I'm skeptical.

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Pomona
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# 17175

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quote:
Originally posted by Palimpsest:
One of the things poisoning the well here in the North West is that people have had bad experiences with dogs, not trained service dogs, but "therapy dogs", meaning an untrained pet that someone wants to take everywhere because they have a note from a compliant doctor saying they're a special snowflake who needs their pet.
When said pet misbehaves, people don't know the difference.

Or you have a serious anxiety disorder or agoraphobia and a dog allows you to leave the house.

Seriously, it's comments like this that help stigma against mental health issues going. Mental illnesses are as real reasons for getting a therapy/assistance animal as blindness or deafness.

FYI most countries require registration and training for therapy animals, the US being behind on this does not negate the helpfulness and often lifesaving help therapy animals provide.

Please educate yourself on the need for therapy animals before making ignorant comments like this.

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Consider the work of God: Who is able to straighten what he has bent? [Ecclesiastes 7:13]

Posts: 5319 | From: UK | Registered: Jun 2012  |  IP: Logged
Boogie

Boogie on down!
# 13538

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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:

In those cases, for blind people, I wonder whether having the article interrupted by "a picture of a feminine-presenting person wearing a pink top sitting at a desk using a computer" is in any way helpful.

I don't know - I'm not blind - but I'm skeptical.

Yes they are - they ask for the descriptions and appreciate them.

I am sending a book of photos of Gypsy's puppyhood for her eventual owner. There is a chance s/he won't be able to see them, but a friend or member of the family will be able to describe them.

This is the pinned header to our Facebook group "For ALL photos please remember that some members cannot see the pictures you post. Therefore don't forget to add a description of all images."

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Garden. Room. Walk

Posts: 13030 | From: Boogie Wonderland | Registered: Mar 2008  |  IP: Logged
Hiro's Leap

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# 12470

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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
I see this a lot, but it's usually in some filler photo that's added to an article. The purpose of the photo (it'll be a stock photo of a woman looking sad, or a mother and her children, or a police car of whatever) is to provide visual interest so you're not looking at a wall of text. It doesn't add information.

True. However, if you don't caption it, the blind person is left uncertain about what they missed and if it was important. The website becomes that bit less user-friendly for them.

Similarly, a photo on Facebook saying "Me with the kids in the kitchen" might not mean a lot to someone who can't see it, but they are then more part of the conversation.

Posts: 3418 | From: UK, OK | Registered: Mar 2007  |  IP: Logged
Leorning Cniht
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# 17564

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quote:
Originally posted by Boogie:

I am sending a book of photos of Gypsy's puppyhood for her eventual owner. There is a chance s/he won't be able to see them, but a friend or member of the family will be able to describe them.

But in this case, the photos of the dog are the content. Your intent is to document her life as a puppy. If you had written a journal about her puppyhood and illustrated it with a load of dog-related clipart, would you expect the friend or family member doing the reading to describe the clipart? Would you also expect them so say "the heading is set in 20 point Garamond in dark blue"?

Unless it was a particularly beautiful layout that you were describing because it was particularly good, I don't think you would. Not every detail of the visual layout is important, or information, and doesn't necessarily translate to an audible presentation.

So I think you'd want to distinguish between images that are really part of the content and images that are mostly filler.

ETA: Clearly, if you are reading something to a blind person, he or she can ask you questions about the "unimportant stuff". That is where I would expect web screenreaders and the like to aim towards - presenting only the important stuff by default, but being able to present everything on request.

[ 29. May 2015, 16:10: Message edited by: Leorning Cniht ]

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