I was recently asked to write a guest blog post for the Neighborhood Writing Alliance, a blog based in Chicago. The blog aims to provide opportunities to provoke dialogue, build community, and provoke change. My piece on The Accessible Icon Project was just published today. Feel free to read it here.
Teachertalk4all is excited to announce our first guest blogger, Nate Perkins. Please enjoy his article below.
Redesigned Accessibility Icon Takes Center Stage on New Taxis of Tomorrow
For Immediate Release: May 1st: Nate Perkins
Wenham, MA – The fight to redefine the way in which people with disabilities are seen in today’s society continues as new accessibility icon makes its way more and more into our everyday lives. With the creation of the new, more accessible Taxis of Tomorrow, the new sign will now be seen by all those waiting along the curbside looking for a ride, both those with disabilities and those without.
During this year’s 2013 New York International Auto Show, Nissan unveiled their new wheel chair accessible NV200 taxicab. The van features a rear-entry ramp and an industry-first integrated restraint system that provides safe and quick securement of wheelchairs. To top off this newly designed vehicle, the taxi features an adapted version of the new accessibility icon, showing a figure in a wheelchair flagging down a taxi, an action that has not readily been associated with a person with a disability.
“This is a huge deal for the Accessible Icon Project because this taxi represents exactly why this non-profit was created.” Says Brian Glenney, co-founder of AIP. “This symbol is just another reminder to the public that there should not be a difference in the way people with disabilities are seen compared to those without disabilities. In most cases people with disabilities are able to do the same things, if not better than, those who are not disabled. Today, we can add hailing a taxi to that list.”
Despite the progress this new van has made for the Accessible Icon Project, and people with disabilities alike, there have been some controversy surrounding the creation of this new vehicle. A court suit has been filed by the Greater New York Taxi association claiming that the new taxi “violates a little-known section of the city’s administrative code because the vehicle, a Nissan NV200, is not a hybrid” according to the New York Times. This has been leading many to doubt whether or not the taxi will actually ever meet the road. However, this does not discourage the folks at AIP.
“While there is some controversy over the ‘Taxi of Tomorrow’ program, I am just happy to see our symbol on the hood of the car.” Leah Serao, staff intern for Accessible Icon Project “Hopefully this symbol becomes more common as more companies take the initiative to represent people with disabilities as such.”
Much still needs to be figured out before the taxi hits the streets but until then things continually look brighter for people with disabilities and how they are perceived by the societies they live in.
For more information please contact media contact below: