May 7 – National Barrier Awareness Day

Posted May 7, 2015

As Ronald Reagan proclaimed May 7 National Barrier Awareness Day, in 1986, he said, "Eighty percent of Americans will experience some disability in their lifetime. That makes it necessary for all of us to understand and appreciate both the barriers they must surmount and the contributions that they can make to our society."

Maybe you think, with all the laws mandating access for people with disabilities – the disabled person parking placards and wheelchair accessible restrooms, the ramps and elevators, the curb cuts and audible street signals—maybe you think that there are no barriers left to remove. 

But of course there are countless barriers still, in the world and even in the U.S...There are private buildings and public parks that have not yet been retrofitted to accessible designs, modes of transportation that have not yet been addressed, and cost barriers to getting service animals.

But the largest barrier, according to some, is other people's attitudes. If you try so hard not to stare at a person with a disability that you won't even glance at him, if you shush a child who says something about a person with a disability instead of teaching her in a friendly, matter-of-fact way about the disability, if you are afraid to acknowledge a wheelchair or a white cane or a hearing aid – then you are helping to make people with disabilities feel unseen and unacknowledged.

Worst of all, some people with disabilities get the feeling that some people automatically assume that one's disability means that there is something wrong with with one's brain!

Cerebral palsy is not a
metal disability.
So...take the time today to notice barriers and think up some way of removing one or two of them. Take the time to raise consciousness about disabilities. And realize that you will probably be part of the 80%...At some point or another, you will have a broken leg or a energy-sapping illness or a loss of sensory acuity or a need for a cane or walker. 

How do you want to be treated, if and when something happens to you?

Also on this date:

National Day of Reason 

Writer, composer, and artist Rabindranath Tagore's birthday 

Anniversary of the recovery of the painting The Scream 

Brahms's birthday

Tchaikovsky's birthday

Anniversary of the world premiere of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony

Plan ahead:

Check out my Pinterest boards for:
And here are my Pinterest boards for:

No comments:

Post a Comment