I am a wheelchair user, but, have seen people telling non-wheelchair users they are not disabled. To change attitudes, change the symbol!
There has been some talk of late about the international symbol of disability access…
We all recognise this, right?
It’s a symbol that everyone can understand without the need for language. We all know that this wheelchair symbol does not mean ‘us’ unless we are disabled. So these symbols get used in many countries to point out disabled-specific facilities such as parking spaces, wheelchair accessible toilets, alternative doorways for the disabled, safety ‘shelter’ areas in multi-storey carparks for those who cannot take the stairs in an emergency, and so on. We all know what this symbol means – there is no confusion over where the disabled facilities are.
Nothing is ever that simple, however.
The universality of this symbol (metaphorically speaking, although aliens may well need disabled access too 😉 ) means that over time the association has been less about the facilities it was intended to represent and more…
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