Ask an Expert

1325–75; Middle English (adj.) < Latin expertus, past participle of experīrī to try, experience

Every day we live with the need to communicate. We need to rise above simple translation and see the meaning, when we build a website we need to include everyone (not just the sighted) and when we travel we are faced with challenging physical barriers. I know what it's like and think I have the depth and resources to help others make the right decisions.

Each month I will be responding to a question, chosen from a pool of some of the most commonly asked ones that I have been asked over the years and continue to be asked. A complete archive of "Ask an Expert" articles can be found here.

Donna Jodhan, a woman with short dark hair and glasses, sits at a table with a laptop in front of her.

This month, I'd like to answer the following question:

Making a community centre more accessible

Before you say no or turn thumbs down on these suggestions; consider these thoughts.

You can definitely increase your revenue and reduce both your internal and external costs and here's how.

Take it from me! I have been an accessibility awareness consultant and advisor since 1998 and I continue to help companies to increase their revenues, reduce their costs, and reach hidden consumer markets!

We have some very basic and potent tips for you and hopefully they can help you to increase visitors to your community centre.

  • Ensure that your centre is accessible in that it is well located on central bus routes, is not too far from the street and that it is easily identified through signs that are easy to spot.
  • That if there are parking lots, that they are easily accessible and that blind and vision impaired persons can easily navigate through them.
  • That there are ramps located in appropriate places, that sidewalks are clear, and that it is easy to find the entrance.
  • That hallways are easy to find, doors and stairs are easy to identify, and that elevators are easy to locate.
  • That tables and chairs are arranged in a manner that enables those with canes, walkers, and wheelchairs to have easy access to them and that there is enough room for them to maneuver their mobile advise.

This should be a good start.