It’s amazing how often we hear this old chestnut “But aren’t all disabled toilets the same though?” This has become a pretty standard reaction when we first meet people and, as we’ve said before, totally understandable if you’ve never had to think about the disadvantages of being Visually Impaired in a Visual world.
From iSight Cornwall
As the Chief Executive of an independent sight loss charity, and registered blind for many years, I appreciate first-hand the crucial role the RoomMate has in transforming, formerly inaccessible, community areas into accessible spaces that can be enjoyed by visually impaired and sighted people alike. Moreover, aside from its primary function, an added bonus of the RoomMate is that it provides an interesting focal point to a room; generating thought-provoking discussions and commentary, thereby raising awareness in the general public regarding the barriers faced by visually impaired people on a daily basis. Since installing a RoomMate at our charity offices we frequently receive praise and positive remarks from visitors, both VIPs and sighted, who use the facility. For me, the question is not why does an organisation need a RoomMate, but why would they not want one?
The Eden Project having just taken delivery of their first two RoomMates and have agreed to trial them in two of their on-site toilet blocks – one toilet in the Visitor Centre and one toilet in the Link building between the two Biomes.
Last week we were invited up to Westminster by the St Ives MP, Derek Thomas, as part of a delegation of Cornish Businesses to promote a new express freight Rail service bringing top quality produce from the West Country to the Capital.
Grade Ruan Community Trust, the Charity behind the purchase, are committed to the maintenance and protection of the public amenities and felt that the fitting of a RoomMate was an important part of that commitment.
Duchy Hospital in Truro has become the latest hospital in the UK to fit the revolutionary RoomMate, an audio description unit for the visually impaired, in one of their disabled access toilets. The RoomMate provides an audio description of the facility for blind and visually impaired users and gives them much greater independence and dignity.
Perranporth Gardens Charities have taken delivery of their revolutionary audio description unit, the RoomMate, for two of their disabled access toilets at their stunning beach facility in Perranporth, Cornwall. The Charity’s Secretary, Tanya Higgins, said “when we first heard about the RoomMate through Crowdfunder UK I thought it was an amazing idea and decided that it would fit perfectly in our newly refurbished facility right on the beach.”
Plymouth have become the first university in the world to install a new device helping visually impaired people navigate safely around disabled access toilets. The RoomMate from ADi Access is being fitted in the disabled access toilet in the Roland Levinsky building foyer on Tuesday 15 December. The electronic wall-mounted device uses a bespoke audio recording to describe the layout of the room to the user, detailing fixtures and fittings and enabling them to use it independently.
Forward by Spencer: ‘I read with interest a recent article published by Vicky Kuhn for International Day of People with Disability on the website disabledGo, especially the comments section, and I thought their readers would be interested to read about the same concerns as illustrated by a member of the VI community as well.’ They weren’t, so I asked Steve to write it anyway..
At 4:18 p.m. on July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong's voice crackled from the speakers at NASA's Mission Control in Houston. He said simply, "the Eagle has landed." Well we've not spent so much money or spent quite as much time but we've finally got there with the delivery of the first batch of production RoomMates.
It's a sad fact of life that we are all different and, as such, people will be discriminated against. Case in point is the current refugee crisis. Regardless of how it has been fuelled we are now, as a country, faced with decisions to make and this has led to distinct opinions being thrown around. For instance "are they refugees or illegal immigrants?" is one of the most popular and the arguments rage on.