We have a segment in our JJsList.com Disability Awareness Training sessions where we focus on accessibility for wheelchair users. When one talks about a handicapped accessible parking spot or handicapped accessible bathroom, they’re usually innocently committing an inherently inaccurate statement.
This is not to say that we want to browbeat everybody who ever uses the terminology of handicapped spaces because it’s so ingrained in everyday terminology as is the iconic logo of an individual in a wheelchair.
What we want to try to encourage is the understanding and awareness that accessibility in and of itself goes beyond wheelchair users. If you were a traveler hastily making your way through an airport and nature inconveniently struck right at that moment but you’re lugging behind you a 50 lb suitcase, that accessible bathroom comes in handy doesn’t it? Or if you’re a mother lugging around a diaper bag, stroller, your own suitcase, and not to mention that hollering ball of irresistibly stinky love in your arms, that accessible bathroom stall again comes in handy doesn’t it?
In that same thread, a motorized liftchair is designed to interact with many of the universal design aspects of an accessible space and when thought of correctly, it’s as freeing as anything else. Pride Mobility puts an emphasis on sharing resources and connecting users and organizations with one another to increase accessibility across the board. When it comes to changing the paradigm of a point-blank world, you don’t take into consideration all the diverse shapes and sizes that we come in.
In particular, this interview with Albert Jumper provides an honest and frank conversation with what an individual experiences before they come into contact with the liberating experiences of being a wheelchair user. One does not have to be confined to anything but rather empowered to get where they want to go with the use of technology. We wouldn’t go outside in wintry conditions without a heavy winter coat, would we? If you somehow found yourself underdressed in a snowstorm, you can bet on someone saying, “put a jacket on or you’ll catch cold!”
So being a wheelchair user can empower individuals to take control of the process of improving their own independence and the decision of which technology to use can be simplified through sites like Pride Mobility who make it their job to understand what your needs are and situate you with the perfect environment to meet your needs, wherever they are.