A 21-year-old woman from Leicester, England, is getting press for her social media campaign urging drivers to be mindful of wheelchair access routes when they park.
Umaymah Dakri, who has spina bifida, launched an Instagram account to document what happens to her when other drivers park blocking wheelchair routes. #DontCurbTheAccess is gaining attention in both the press and the public.
Meet Umaymah here.
By Helen Sullivan
IPMI members have asked me which symbol to use to mark an accessible parking spot.
Good question! I strongly recommend—without hesitation—using the traditional, upright icon to mark accessible parking spots.
There is a movement to switch from the traditional accessibility icon for parking signs to one that features the icon angled forward. Several states and a few cities have adopted the forward leaning symbol, however, parking and mobility professionals should be aware that to meet federal guidelines, the traditional accessibility icon must be used.
I understand that to some, the forward leaning symbol connotes action, ability, and empowerment for people with disabilities, but there are other advocates for individuals who disagree. I understand the pros and cons. At the Accessible Parking Coalition, we originally incorporated the forward leaning icon into our logo, only to be advised by APC founding member and friend David Capozzi, executive director of the U.S. Access Board, that we needed to change that—and fast—to avoid confusion within the industry! In fact, the U.S. Access Board issued a news release in 2017 to clear up the issue definitively.
At this time, based on the current U.S. Access Board guidelines, the traditional icon of the International Symbol of Accessibility (ISA) is the one to use to ensure accessible spaces meet federal regulations, including those issued under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). However, this presents complications in cities and states that require use of the other symbol. Should anything change, I promise to let you know!
Helen Sullivan is director of the IPMI-led Accessible Parking Coalition.
California has embarked on a wide-ranging program to catch drivers illegally using disabled parking placards. The effort comes on the heels of an estimate that one in 10 placards in the state is misused, either with drivers parking in ADA-reserved spaces when they’re not driving a person to whom a placard was issued, or by using a placard obtained illegally. They’ve found placards being sold on eBay for about $60.
A television news crew recently followed DMV investigators through Oakland on a crackdown, where they talked with people using placards illegally and people with disabilities who voiced frustration at the actions of other drivers. See the video here.
For more information and resources about disabled placard abuse–and to share your own experiences or data–visit accessibleparkingcoalition.org.
For the second year, officials conducted handicap parking rules enforcement at the Los Angeles County Fair, and their findings were sobering: 17 percent of those parking in a lot reserved for those with ADA permits were there fraudulently.
Officers checked the placards of 1,955 cars parked in a reserved lot at the fair during four days, and issued 345 citations to drivers using the permits illegally. This was the second year checking permits at the fair; last year, 477 drivers were cited out of 2,754–also about 17 percent.
Read the whole story here. For resources, visit the Accessible Parking Coalition.