Making Community Spaces Accessible
The issue of accessibility, and how we make public and community spaces more accessible to everyone, continues to be a recurring one throughout the many conversations we’ve had during the More Moss Park public consultation.
An accessibility workshop hosted by More Moss Park and the Alliance for Equality of Blind Canadians at Deer Park Library on July 16 was an opportunity to seek feedback from folks for whom having accessible community spaces is a top priority. Almost all of those in attendance frequently use their local community centres.
Among the barriers to accessibility identified by participants were: doors and elevators that are too small or narrow for wheelchair access, particularly in winter; confusing, inadequate or non-existent signage, especially for those with visual impairments; and some community staff who weren’t providing adequate orientation and assistance to those with disabilities.
Ideas for a more accessible community space included longer summer hours, when community centres are needed the most, raised lettering and braille on signage, and keeping programming and services affordable. “Cost is an important factor,” said Doris, “especially for those on Ontario Disability Support Program.”
“It’s having the tools and services to be functional in your community,” said Tammy.
Thanks to everyone who came out to share their experiences and ideas on accessible community spaces.