May 11, 2021
#CaptureTheBarrier Article: Lets start the conversation
Tactile pavement, braille signage, alternative entrances, and grab bars. How often do you notice these features in your day-to-day life? While all of these items are important features in public spaces, they are often a forgotten detail that leaves people with disabilities at a disadvantage. In order to start the conversation on the lack of accessibility in public spaces, Project Echo has created the #CaptureTheBarrier social media challenge where users can spread awareness by sharing photos of accessibility issues in their community.
So how can you participate? Whether you’re on a walk, running errands, or on your way to work, try to notice the level of accessibility in your community. Spot an issue? Capture a photo of the problem, upload it to social media with #CaptureTheBarrier, and challenge 3 other people to participate in this challenge. By participating in this challenge, you’re increasing the awareness of everyday problems that are experienced by people with disabilities.
We encourage participants to engage with other #CaptureTheBarrier entries by browsing through the hashtag and starting conversations with other users about different accessibility problems. What’s a barrier that you have never noticed before? How accessible is your community compared to others? What are some easy changes that your municipality can make in order to alleviate these barriers? These are all important questions to keep in mind when looking at #CaptureTheBarrier posts.
Why is this important? While it only takes a minute to participate in this challenge, your photo could completely change the perspective of someone else. Only when more people start acknowledging, recognizing, and talking about these issues can we truly make a change. So what are you waiting for? Grab your phone the next time you’re running errands, challenge your perspective, and start acknowledging these prevalent problems. What may look like a normal set of stairs to one person can be a barrier to the next.
What’s next? Project Echo is a research study that looks at the long-term impacts of parasport events and the experiences of physical activity of people with disabilities. If you’re interested in having your voice heard by researchers, decision-makers, and community partners, we strongly encourage you to join the movement, add your voice to our forums, and join our monthly chat nights regarding accessibility issues.
Written by: Erica Lo