Detail Data undertook a survey of major tourist attractions and public facilities in Northern Ireland to gauge their accessibility for people with disabilities. A range of site owners were asked detailed questions on arrangements that they have in place for visitors and customers with access needs and the results appeared in our article Access Denied: Shortfalls revealed in disability provision at venues across Northern Ireland.
As well as the actual physical barriers to accessibility, the lack of knowledge and information on which facilities are accessible (or not) can also exclude people with mobility-impairment. Access information isn't always published on organisations' websites so it can be difficult to find out if a place is accessible before visiting it.
We're using data from the survey to populate My Way Access, an on-line directory containing details of businesses and how suitable they are for disabled clientele, and Wheelmap, an open source community project aimed at creating a map for wheelchair-accessible places by crowdsourcing the information.
Adding information to these platforms will help people with disabilities plan their day and increase their options to better participate in society. Thanks to creating a wealth of information from our survey responses, we can show those places that have invested in creating accessible facilities.
There are many more places in Northern Ireland than those we surveyed which are currently lacking accessibility information, but you can help to fill that knowledge gap.
It is as easy to contribute to Wheelmap as it is to use it. There is a simple green-yellow-red rating system that is assigned to a place.
If you see a place that has a grey tag but you know about its accessibility, please help by tagging it and letting others know that they can visit.