Disabled people fear exclusion due to Covid-19 precautions

By Joe Lutrario contact

- Last updated on GMT

Disabled people access to restaurants Coronavirus

Related tags: Disability, Disabled customers, Euan's Guide, Casual dining, Fine dining, Fast food, Coronavirus

Disabled access review website Euansguide.com is imploring restaurants to ensure their Covid-19 precautions don’t make venues less accessible for disabled people.

The call follows the publication of a survey that highlighted disabled people’s key requirements, including having access to sanitising stations that are at an accessible height; having an accessible route that disabled people can navigate independently; and having clear markings to ensure people social distance.

Respondents also expressed concern over no longer having access to a venues toilets; people not respecting and honouring social distancing; and having to queue or wait outside, particularly if the weather is bad.

The report includes 27 actionable measures that businesses can implement to help encourage and support disabled people who choose to visit.

Euansguide.com​ says many of these actions will already be in place as part of their existing Covid-19 precautionary measures.

Others are more specific to ensuring levels of access remain high, such as ensuring that there are enough accessible parking bays, including information on Covid-19 precautions alongside their access information and offering Special Assistance or an Access Buddy system.

Businesses should also try to address concerns such as a lack of seating and rest stops and how they can support someone who is not able to see, understand or fit in the venue’s defined spaces.

78% of respondents indicated that they are likely to look at the venue’s website for disabled access information and information on the Covid-19 safety measures before visiting.

Venues are advised to make sure up to date and detailed information on both is available on their website and that the information is easy to find from their homepage.

Venues are encouraged to list both their disabled access and Covid-19 information on Euan’s Guide for free, a source which 50% of participants said they would check.

Euansguide.com says places that fail to share disabled access and Covid-19 information online risk of losing out on a growing and loyal market.

The spending power of households with a disabled person in them is estimated to be £249 billion a year.

“It is important that businesses don’t neglect their disabled access and take the time to consider how the changes they are making might impact their customers,” says the guide’s co-founder Euan MacDonald. 

“Losing access to toilets, parking facilities, and staff assistance can all make a venue that a disabled person once considered to be accessible suddenly inaccessible.”

“While queuing and mask wearing is expected of the majority it is important to let people know about any exceptions to these rules to save unnecessary discomfort or worry. Knowing what to expect in advance helps people plan their trip and avoid disappointment.”

Related topics: Trends & Reports, Restaurant, Casual Dining

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