Monday, July 26, 2010

It was 20 years ago today...

The Americans with Disabilities Act was signed into law. Since that day, the ADA has been changing the face and landscape of America. People with disabilities now can circulate more freely and participate in the life and activities of their communities. Increasingly, we see signs:

signifying access. This universal sign for access for people with disabililities is a welcome sight.


But, it ain't necessarily always so:

 This place is stepping up -- for foot traffic maybe. No ramp in sight.

And then another business. Same thing?:

But wait!

Oh, I see. It's clear to me now:

OK. But where's the "associate" to ask? I see the statue holding the wrenches there, but it looks as if I'm screwed if I want in here.

Up the block (all these sights are to be seen along 5th Avenue in downtown San Diego) here's one place trying to be helpful:

Looking at this, I decide I really need a drink. Hey, where's the assistance?

At least, I guess people realize they ought to do something. 

Ideally, one of these days, the need for such signage will disappear because everyplace will provide access. That day is a long, long way off. I wonder how many people with disabilities complain to these businesses and others like them. More and more people with disabilities are getting out into their communities and they have higher expectations for access.

Getting in the door is a first, er, step. Getting customers with disabilities in the door seems like a no-brainer for businesses, but so many businesses fail to grasp such a simple idea. Twenty years on, you would think business owners would get the message. 

Hello out there!

No comments: