[personal profile] jazzyjj
Hello everybody. Subject line is pretty accurate. I'm wondering if any of you have ever come across website forms that just time out after only a short interval? Just a couple of days ago my father and I attempted to register on our preferred bank's website. I had previously read an article elsewhere online which highly praises this bank's accessibility efforts. So my father and I both had our computers handy, and we went to our bank's site and began the registration process. I should state here that I had an account with them before not online, so some of my information needed to be updated. But the form kept on timing out, and we had to call their customer service department. It all worked out in the end and it turns out that their website is very accessible at least on the Mac with VoiceOver, but it seems that some of the forms on there in addition to sign-up are timed. I think I'm going to email their accessibility team about this, but thought I'd also post about it here.
[personal profile] jazzyjj
Good morning/afternoon/evening all! I came across the following post just yesterday on another website and I'm wondering what y'all think? I don't know about anyone else here, but to me what this guy is proposing needs to be given some more thought. Judging from past works of his I believe he is a hard-core member of the National Federation of the Blind, which split with the American Council of the Blind back in the early 1960's. If memory serves, the ACB's historical account of the split into 2 separate organizations is still available from their website http://www.acb.org . I actually read that book several years ago in audio format, and it presented some truly harsh facts about the situation. I'm pasting a link to the forum topic. http://applevis.com/forum/accessibility-advocacy/proposal-applevis-accessibility-advocacy-assistant .

For whatever reason I can't get a shortened URL to this, so if it doesn't work just try copying and pasting. I've been strongly convinced for years that this type of thinking is exactly what is hindering a lot of our nation's disability advocacy.
roserodent: Avatar (Default)
[personal profile] roserodent
I  spoke to my bank today about a website access problem, and they told me the only way to sort out the issue was to be called on a landline phone (don't have one) by an automated service. I told them this is a problem for anyone who is Deaf and would they at least do it for me in the branch. No. They will know my access number, that is not secure. But it's all ok as there's a special feature for deaf callers... At the end of the call it asks you to press 1 if you didn't hear it and it will ask you again.

The mind positively boggles!

I told her best case scenario a phone call goes "flub flub flubbety  flub wub" and worst case it goes "[tumbleweed]" and this was genuinely surprising to her.

This is a variant of the tax office which has an AUDIO message on their text phone line saying press 1 if you are deaf...  
[personal profile] jazzyjj
Hi everyone. I haven't posted to this comm for a little bit but I have a question. I recently got my ADA paratransit re-certification notice in the mail, and I've honestly been debating what exactly to do about it. Every other time I've gotten one of these, I just went ahead with the whole re-certification process. I wasn't too happy about that, but I did it anyway. But now that state funding has gotten so out of hand, I'm totally giving up on paratransit. So earlier this afternoon I phoned the local paratransit certification folks, and spoke with somebody who actually seemed at first to know what she was doing. However, when I asked her my question and she kept putting me on hold, it became quite clear to me that she had absolutely no clue. Hence my reason for asking here. Is it absolutely, 100% necessary for one to re-certify for ADA paratransit even if they are going to only ride the fixed-route buses and the trains? I don't have very good independent travel skills anymore, which in part is a discussion for another time. Actually I posted about this over at the Disabled Rage comm, so anyone interested please feel free to go there and have a look. I also posted an earlier entry here regarding this. But anyway, whenever I travel outdoors I need somebody with me who has good eyeballs. There are a couple exceptions, but I generally can no longer travel outdoors independently. My directional navigation isn't that great anymore either, so I don't want to ride paratransit. I have been asked by drivers to give directions to where I was going, and I never felt comfortable doing that unless someone I know well was riding with me. I would carry along maps, but I think that's a whole other can of worms. I have a cell phone and am happy to call somebody if I get lost, but then the problem becomes telling that person where I am at the time I'm lost.
zdashamber: painting - a frog wearing a bandanna (Default)
[personal profile] zdashamber
I'm going to give a five-minute presentation tomorrow evening on basic web accessibility (what to do re: designing and developing a website)... Here are the slides: https://slides.com/madelinebernard/webaccessibility

I'm interested in taking feedback on it, if you have any!
roserodent: Avatar (Default)
[personal profile] roserodent
 Good news, a win for access, a local community facility has installed automatic doors. 

Erm... sadly they have installed them outside the existing manual doors to "stop the new doors letting in a draft because they're so big". So the automatic doors can take you almost 6 feet then you must open a manual door which pulls towards the automatic door, which is now in the way and will not close until you pass through the manual door. 

Oh the thought process. I suggest "Door 101: using them to get from outside to inside"
zdashamber: painting - a frog wearing a bandanna (Default)
[personal profile] zdashamber
There are some useful links on this tumblr, http://a11ywins.tumblr.com/, if you create internet things or apps, or know someone who needs pointers.
jadelennox: Fierce cat: You wanna piece of me? (t-cat)
[personal profile] jadelennox
Wow, LiveJournal is now using Key Captcha, the worst captcha I have ever seen in a career of terrible captchas. Don't even bother going to their site if you use a screen reader -- you won't be able to learn anything, because even the non-captcha parts of their site aren't accessible.

Basically, there is a difficult-to-see smallish image, and then some ugly jigsaw puzzle pieces that are parts of the image, that you need to click and drag (mouse only) into the main image. There is no screen reader functionality, no non-mouse functionality, no accessible alternative. I don't know if it's possible to implement with an accessible alternative, but LJ certainly hasn't, and there is nothing built into keycaptcha itself.

I am honestly completely appalled.
zdashamber: painting - a frog wearing a bandanna (Default)
[personal profile] zdashamber
Housing prices are heinous in the Bay Area and I live in Mountain View, where there are other people who realize we need to build more housing. We elected pro-housing people to the City Council, and there's a push to put in a dense neighborhood with multi-story housing and shops into the (currently hella boring 1-2 story) office park that Google lives in. There will be meetings this summer (one is set for Saturday July 25th at the Senior Center) to get public input into how this neighborhood should look/work; it might be possible to reroute streets, build bridges across the highway, all kinds of things.

What kinds of things would make it accessible? Things like:
  • wheelchair-accessible units
  • sidewalks on the main housing area wide enough for two wheelchairs to roll side by side
  • shop doors right at street level
  • chirping intersection markers that go off on their own (no button)
  • indents where the bus can pull in, out of traffic, next to the sidewalk
  • ...what else?
Is there stuff I don't have to mention because the ADA covers it? Who should I definitely reach out to so they can come advocate also?

(Edited to remove my own accessibility fail in language, sorry all)
sine_nomine: (Default)
[personal profile] sine_nomine
I bought a blender last year. An Oster, because they are -- generally -- high quality and because this particular model had both decent power and reversing blades... the better to make smoothies with.

I'd been out of town for a while so the blender wasn't used for about two weeks or so. Awakened one morning and decided I wanted a smoothie for breakfast. Loaded up the blender, turned it on and NOTHING. Tried another outlet. Nope. Tried re-seating the blender jar. Nope. Removed the blender jar entirely and tried turning it on (because this particular model turns on without the jar in place). Nope. It wasn't just nearly dead. It was really most sincerely dead.

So I called the nice Oster people; it's about a year old. Should still be under warranty. The customer service person appeared to have found my order but she had to have me in the same room with the blender as there was information "on the blender" that they would require. I was driving at the time so that didn't happen. I called back today with the blender in front of me.

Here's where we get into fail:
Today's customer service person (who said she couldn't find my order but at least found the record of the previous call) asked me to look at the metal prongs on the plug. According to her, there would be numbers inscribed on one of the prongs and alphabet letters on the other. They could be on the inside or the outside of the prongs; it varies where they put them.

I couldn't see a thing. And I have 20/20 vision, though focusing is a little slow sometimes. Managed to find something that vaguely magnifies and lo and behold, on the inside of the metal prongs, there was in fact something inscribed. I was clueless, of course, as to what it actually said.

But here's the kicker: She couldn't assist me without knowing what those letters and numbers were. And I can actually see! What if I were a customer who couldn't?!? Would I have to call a friend to come over and read the silly plug? Could there be any worse place on an entire blender to put the very numbers that identify this particular blender than the prongs on the plug?? And on the inside of them, to boot!

I told her it would probably be faster for me to slice off the plug and send it to them. Or, alternatively, to send the whole blender back. She informed me that wouldn't work as I'd be sending the blender back "to the warehouse, not to the Customer Care Center that is trying to assist you."

So we left it that "consumer will be calling back when consumer can access the requisite numbers and letters".

I think, however, that I will instead be hunting down the address of the CEO of their parent company, packing up the blender and shipping it off with a letter that politely says "You have got to be f'ing kidding me! Figure out a way to send me a new blender... and to improve the location of your identifiers because on the plug in teeny tiny letters is ridiculous."
[personal profile] jazzyjj
Hi everyone. Since we already have one accessibility win posted here, I thought I'd talk about my experience calling AppleCare this morning. I had to call them to straighten out something with my Apple ID. I attempted to reset things online, but couldn't quite figure it out so I decided to use the old phone trick. So this morning I got up around 7:15 my time and called, hoping that they wouldn't be busy. Sure enough, I got through right away. The first person with whom I spoke seemed to be a receptionist or something, but was friendly and transferred me to Gary, after taking down some information. I told him my problem, and he said he was sorry I was experiencing the problem but that he'd be glad to help me. So that is exactly what he did. For a bit of background, I am on my first Mac computer and haven't quite had it for a year. I am a VoiceOver user, which is the screen reader built into all Apple's products. It turned out that I had sort of forgotten about a keystroke, and I skipped over some of the steps on their website to reset my Apple ID. But Gary was super nice and professional. He was also very patient with me throughout the call. He even took the time to wish me happy holidays and asked me how I'm spending them. I really appreciated that.
sarah: (traffic)
[personal profile] sarah
The Kengaru is a hatchback electric car designed specifically for wheelchair users: the hatchback opens up, you roll right in, and it's driven using airplane-style controls.



This is a remarkable design, but the story of how Stacey Zorn made it a reality is even more amazing (link includes animated gifs and a video). The initial version is for manual chair users (expected to run ~$20,000), with a second model for power chair users coming next.
dubhain: (kill -9 ubs)
[personal profile] dubhain
This is California. You are a facility belonging to the University of California. Furthermore, you're situated in the capitol of California. Now, given that the rest of the nation considers California to be home of the "Fruits, nuts, and flakes," (and note that I fall into at least one of the first two of those categories, so I'm not disparaging, here,) not to mention a seething hotbed of liberal inclusion, tolerance, and political-correctness (not that this is strictly true — Orange County comes to mind,) one would think that you'd have your act together, when it comes to accessibility.

One would, sadly, be incorrect in that assumption.

Why? Well, let's see: We could talk about your closing-down the parking ramp which gives the most convenient and accessible access to much of the main hospital and turning it into staff-only parking (except, apparently, for one day per week, which isn't actually specified on any of your signage. (The signage, actually, says it's still for patients and visitors, for the most part. Until you try to enter, of course.)) Or we could talk about the the other parking ramp, which has had its handicapped spots moved farther from the doors and replaced with Electric Vehicle charging stations and maintenance vehicles. Because, y'know, fuck the patients with disabilities. You have to encourage the use of electric cars and keep things as convenient for your employees as possible.

Then there's the main hospital, itself: A maze of twisty little passages, all alike. I realize that your hospital, even more than most, apparently, has accreted, rather than been well-planned. However, your hospital is a stone bitch to get through for the people who don't have mobility issues. For those of us who do, it's a freakin' nightmare. "Well, you have to park here, then walk to the entrance there. Then, if it's during regular hours, on a weekday, and you've come in through the main entrance, a volunteer will walk with you part-way to where you're going. [which is frequently at the other end of the complex, down a route with more twists and turns than an Escher print.] Of course, you can come in through one of the closer entrances to the parking ramp, but there won't be a guide. You'll have to follow the signs." The signs. Er...yeah. That's another little matter where you fail spectacularly. I know of at least one hallway junction where there are four signs labeled "East Wing," with arrows. The arrow upon each sign points (and I'm not kidding, here) in a different direction. Is it ahead? Back the way I came? To the Right? Or through that door to the Left and down the stairs? Pick one. Only to go in whichever direction has been chosen, and find a sign with an arrow pointing back the way I came in the first place. (The trick, apparently, is to ignore the signage in that junction, continue straight onward, take the South Elevators, which will arrive in the East Wing. Apparently there are spacial anomalies involved, which would baffle Captain Janeway. And gods know she saw far too many of them in that lousy spin-off.)

Eventually, one hopes, one will arrive at one's destination. Your medical care is, generally speaking, good to excellent. Administratively? Well, your administrative talents rival those of your signage abilities. But hey: Care's the important thing, right?

Unless, of course, one happens to have mobility issues, and is walking forfreakingever down those twisty little passages, all alike. I finally found a way to escape your hospital, by the way: One follows the "Specialty Coffee Kiosk" signs. Apparently they, unlike the signs for, say, the East Wing, aren't designed to be read as a faulty logic puzzle from Alice in Wonderland. Of course, then there's the hike back to the parking ramp, but hey: Exercise is good for people, right? Even when walking for distances is excruciatingly painful. Builds character, and all that.

Seriously, UCD: You're a medical branch of a major state educational institution in the state believed to be the most progressive and accommodating in the entirety of North America. Nonetheless, you fail — and fail spectacularly at that — in so, so many ways. I simply cannot imagine how you can design your medical campus to fail this spectacularly, in so many "WTF?" ways.

Does UCD actually even have any mobility-impaired people on staff? 'Cause y'all need to hire some. Seriously. Preferably in your planning and facilities maintenance departments. Because, y'know, the level of fail in your facilities is approaching critical mass.
davidgillon: A pair of crutches, hanging from coat hooks, reflected in a mirror (Default)
[personal profile] davidgillon
Really good Huff Post piece on how normies make it difficult for wheelchair users with invisible disabilities. Rings absolutely true.

(And another Bendy speaking out, pro rata we must be one of the most published disability sub-groups!)

fayanora: SK avatar (Default)
[personal profile] fayanora
My roommate is under the impression that if you owe student loans, the student loans people can legally take all your paycheck, all your disability if you're on it, all your tax returns, and can even legally take all the tax returns of your spouse if you get married, and so she has decided not to bother trying to apply for disability because of this. I don't know whether to believe it or not, because that sounds not only highly illegal, but extremely unethical. I doubt it's legal to take someone's entire income for a debt they owe. (USA)

But if it is true, that is a MASSIVE accessibility fail.
davidgillon: A pair of crutches, hanging from coat hooks, reflected in a mirror (Crutches)
[personal profile] davidgillon
A friend just mentioned having done training on using evac chairs, which reminded me of all the shenanigans at work WRT me and evac plans. They're probably worth repeating to prompt everyone to give a little thought to how you would get out of your workplace (or home) in an emergency.

Personally I can do stairs, but because I use crutches I take up a lot of space, and I can be fairly slow moving. OTOH the nature of Hypermobility Syndrome means in a real emergency I'd probably just ditch the crutches and let the pain and damage catch up with me once I'm outside and safe.

Evil Aerospace Inc were fairly good about running fire drills - the rumour was they had to be as they had been told by the fire brigade our warren-like main building would be left to burn in an emergency, it would be too dangerous to send fire-fighters inside. Our office (in a separate building) had a largely open plan area about the size of a football pitch, with several hundred engineers. It was 1st floor (US 2nd floor), but it was an ex-manufacturing building with double height ceilings, so the number of stairs was more like a three storey building. There was one staircase at either end and one in the middle, so call it 100 engineers trying to file out of each.

When we had a fire drill I got into the habit of waiting until the end to start down the stairs, it was just easier than trying to walk with crutches in crowds. Then they got a bit more serious about evacuations and appointed fire wardens for each floor with yearly planning/training sessions. Ours was a good friend of mine, so I was certain my needs would be addressed. After the first training session, she came back and brightly announced:
"Dave, we talked about you, and agreed you have to wait until last to go down the stairs."

Voluntarily waiting until last is one thing, being told to do it is quite another!

"So if you're deciding when I leave the building, then shouldn't I have a formal Personal Emergency Evacuation plan?"

"Oh, no, you're disabled, but you're not that disabled!"

A year rolls around and she goes off to the next planning session.

"Dave, we just had our planning session, and we agreed I can pass you on the stairs to go and report the building is empty."

*Headdesk* *Headdesk* *Headdesk*

Later on I changed teams and was moved to one of our tower blocks, I think I was on the fifth floor - too high for me to manage without using lifts. Despite the fact I was working in QA and we had procedures for everything (and that we had the corporate bosses in the next tower over) no one ever thought to ask if I could manage to get out in an emergency (the answer was yes, just - I stayed behind one night to work out if I could manage the stairs going down).

Moral of the story: corporate attention to fire safety and other evacuation threats (we had at least one bomb scare while I was there that we weren't evacuated for, never mind the suspect device was barely 100m from our office, and a structural failure in our building that took them an unforgiveable four hours to decide to evacuate us) can vary from negligent to overly confident, none of which necessarily implies competent thought has actually gone into it. You are the only person who really understands your accessibility needs, so give some thought to how you would get out of the building if the worst happens, and if management won't address it, then maybe talk to your friends and agree a plan. If you need advice, then I suspect your local fire service can probably advise (they'll definitely prefer finding you outside when they arrive to having to go into a burning building to fetch you), and if there are really egregious safety failures then you may need to consider reporting them to the fire service/Health and Safety Executive/OSHA or local equivalents.

(Also worth remembering, issues won't stop once you're out of the building, you need to get to the evac assembly area, which in most large sites are likely to be 100m or more away, and then get home afterwards. If you need to abandon mobility equipment to get out, particularly wheelchairs if you're taken out on an evac chair, then what happens next? Obviously the ideal would be to have someone bring out your chair/whatever alongside you, but that's only practical if it's safe).

dubhain: I think you're confusing nice and evil again (Nice and Evil)
[personal profile] dubhain
I adore you. You do laundry for a buck a pound, and you're so intensely eager to help that it's almost embarrassing. I'll definitely be back.

I do have one question, though: WTFF were you thinking, when you designed your parking lot? I mean, I get that you've made the parking slips so narrow as possible, to maximize the number of cars it'll accommodate. I even understand why you've made the lanes between parking slips so narrow. Same reason. It makes navigating your parking lot...challenging, especially when folks in pick-up trucks with eight-foot beds park in a slip designed for a compact, but that's life, when one drives in Sacramento.

But why, why, why did you have to situate your one-and-only handicapped parking space in an awkward position, between the sidewalk and the building, with a frimping tree behind it, across the sidewalk?

Seriously: In order to use the thing, I'd have to drive a subcompact car (which I do, fortunately,) pull into the driveway, and jockey back and forth at an angle, repeatedly, crossing the sidewalk every time.

And when I commented upon it, your employee told me "We're very proud of our lot!" Er...yeah. The confused look on her face was priceless, when I pointed-out the difficulty of getting into and out of the handicapped space. The only handicapped space. The one with a frimping tree between it and the street.

I'll still be using you, Awesome Laundromat, because you're such a great laundromat. But...just...WTF accessibility parking fail?
roserodent: Avatar (Default)
[personal profile] roserodent
 I spoke to Megabus to try to book in to travel with my powered wheelchair. Let the stupid commence! I have a very unusual kind of powerchair which folds up without tools and very quickly to fit in the boot of a medium (European medium!) car boot (trunk). But they were not interested in weight or dimensions, electric wheelchairs are too big and too heavy, always. I asked what size of space they have - electric wheelchairs are too big. What dimensions can I take? It's too big, it cannot travel. It fits in a Kia Cee'd so I'm pretty sure it fits in the massive luggage compartment of a coach, what size of wheelchair can I bring? You can bring a "normal wheelchair" - whatever the heck that is. So I said what if I bring the batteries in a suitcase? No, it won't fit. OK, I say, I have changed my mind, I will bring a 32kg non powered wheelchair and a 25kg suitcase. That's fine, says agent, you don't even need to pre-book that. So I ask her does she realise she has agreed to exactly the same wheelchair provided that the batteries are inside a suitcase - instant backtrack: no, I never said you could bring that, I said I will find out for you. Weird, since I use captioned calls and I have a word for word transcript. For anyone who doens't use text, GA means "go ahead" it's like saying "over" on the radio it means the end of what you are saying and time for the other person to respond. I start on each occasion

"It will bbe 32kgg and I can probably make it go in 2 suitacses and one hang luggae. So that's one wheelchair, one suitcase and my hand luggage GA ill pop you on hold thanks.. holding.. Holding... Holding... Holding... thnks for holding for me i have spoken to control again gave themn the weight ive been told its been confrmed the only way we can accommodate that chair is by the passenger being sitting in the chari with the chair going on the bus on standard bus." so it's too heavy when it's 32kg and a suitcase and hand luggage. 




"OK, I changed my mind then,, I bring a 32kg manual chair, a suitacase and my huand luggage, ,how do I book this on the night service  GA if its just an iordinary wheelchair that folds down you dont have to book it  GA You realise you have just said that exactly the same chair fits... If I do not take the batteries and I put them in a suitaase and tell you it's a 32kgg manual chair, suuddently it is much smaller and will fit.  GA so your not going to take the batterys for the chair  GA I will put the battery in a suitacase and then it becomes a manual chair and I have a 25kg suticase with contents which is my personal business  GA your going to put an ordinary wheelchair 32sg in luggage holder and batterys in a suitcase GA Yes, which is exactly what I have been telling you all along but when you thought it was a n eee  electric wheelchair it was all kinds of problems. If it is a manua wheelchair when I give it to you, and I put the batteries in a case, it will fit. So clearly it fitted from the start of this conversation  GA ive not confirmed that yet .. am going to find out for you  GA No, ou said ifi t is an ordinary wheelchair I don't even need to book it. It wil be an ordinary wheelchair. THe content of the case is not relevant to the size, weight or other charactieristcis of the wheelchiar  GA hold on please.."

This is where I hung up...

These are some other snippets you may enjoy: (sorry, my typing sucks on this computer and there is no correct function with live typing)

" HOw about if you put the wheelchair part in teh hold and I book it as a manual chair and I will take the 2 small parts on teh bus with me as hand luggage and you don't nee dto worry about whether it's one things or another, I will hav eth ebattiers and you will handle the part which is not electric into the hold, any better?  GA no there will not be enough space  GA Ca you tell me on what baiss you have decided it will not fit? If a manual chair will fit and this is NOT BIGGER then how cann it suddely not fit?  GA its the weight you are allowed of luggae la allowance one standard suitacase one hand luggage if evreyone has one suitable stuitcase there isn ot not enough space to put the wheelchair parts GA The weight is also not more than I would bring as luggage as I have no suitcase ... yyou are clearly making lots of assumptions rather than asking questions... it is electric so you are immediately obstructive. You have no idea how heavy any part is, how much other                   luggage I have, how much luggage anyne else has, you have no idea what it weighs, but can confidently inform me that it is too heavy [...] you have the legal obligation to carry a wheelchair if it is *possible* not just if it meets some crieria you have decided apply. [...] What do you need to know about mmy chair to find out whether it will fit? Height? Width? Not just that it is electric!!  GA"

A clear case of determination to find electric wheelchairs conform to specific stereotypes and cannot possibly be not those things. The fact they assume it will be heavy does not change its ACTUAL weight! I decided it was not sufficiently worth my time and effort to fight this out this one time in order to go to the event I had wanted to attend, but this is not the end of this, once I have more time to fight them on it. 
[personal profile] jazzyjj
Hello everyone. I thought I'd post about a great experience I just had a few minutes ago with a representative of Christian Record Services for the Blind. This is a nonprofit organization based in Lincoln, Nebraska. They have representatives in several parts of the country, and the one with whom I spoke is in Wisconsin. I had left him a voicemail awhile back concerning a problem I was having with their online registration form to use the lending library. He just called me back after being on vacation, and patiently registered me. I am now going to start receiving materials from them again, including some digital material that I can listen to on my digital talking book machine. I attended 2 of their summer camps several years ago and had a lot of fun at both. We remembered each other from camp. So three cheers for Christian Record Services for the Blind! But please, please fix the registration form on the page for your lending library! The actual form itself was very easy to navigate using VoiceOver, but I think you should check out the "submit" button. When I clicked it I was merely taken back home with no confirmation of my form submission. Not only that, but I never received an email confirmation either.
[personal profile] jazzyjj
Hi everyone. I've been a member of this comm for a couple days and have just been skimming through the entries. However, today I thought I'd post a question. I've been in a rather difficult situation, and I'm wondering if anybody else has experienced being told that they can't have any formal O&M training unless they have a full-time paying job. I think at least some people know what O&M is, but for those who don't it stands for orientation&mobility. Please allow me to explain a bit. It has been several years since I've had a formal O&M evaluation, or any high-quality O&M instruction. In the summer of 2004 I moved out of my parents' house and into an apartment building which is part of an LLC, a limited liability corporation. Since then people have taken me out on walks and briefly shown me around the area. Everybody here is extremely friendly and helpful. I was told rather curtly several years ago by a job coach, that none of these people should be showing me this stuff, unless they are certified O&M instructors. This so-called job coach further told me that any non-qualified O&M person would get in "serious" trouble if they showed me around. The thing is though, I haven't been able to convince my state voc/rehab agency that I'm important enough or that this situation is important enough to merit any formal O&M instruction. A few years ago I attended part of a conference with someone else, and we went up to the Client Assistance Program representatives in attendance and I explained my dilemma. They opened up a case for me, and finally an O&M specialist was sent out here to work with me. But we only worked together for a few short lessons, and then she abruptly stopped coming. What she did do though, was ask me what one thing I needed to work on. My response was street crossings. I specifically remember her telling me that aside from advocating like crazy hell for accessible traffic signals in this area, the only other solution to crossing the street independently was a card that basically said: "I'm blind, please help me cross the street." I think I still have this card tucked away in one of my drawers. So she and I practiced a bit with the card. In fact I remember surprising my former roommate, who at the time lived in a building near mine. He was legally blind, and unfortunately he passed away at the beginning of last year. But the building he lived in has a Starbucks in it. So anyway, this instructor and I actually paged him one morning when we had just gotten to his building. He came down in his underwear. I guess he thought the instructor was visually impaired too, which she wasn't. So that was funny. Btw, she never even showed me the way up to his unit, or to the Starbucks. I'm not a coffee drinker, but I happen to be a fan of the other things that Starbucks serves. So my question is what to do here. Should I lodge another formal complaint with the Client Assistance Program, or what? I'd definitely classify this as a means of accessibility fail. Rant over!

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accessibility_fail: Universal "person in wheelchair" symbol, with wheelchair user holding a cutlass (Default)
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