Rick Hansen joins Ryan Jespersen podcast, talks disability awareness and accessibility training through PowerED™
Improving building accessibility could allow 500,000 people with disabilities to participate more fully in the workforce, says Rick Hansen, Canadian icon and disability advocate. Implementing these changes would be a major benefit to society and the economy as well, he added.
“In today’s world, the expectation is that you can truly, fully participate in society, yet unfortunately that is not the case,” Hansen said during an interview on Real Talk with Ryan Jespersen.
The founder of the Rick Hansen Foundation joined the popular podcast for Disability Pride Month to discuss disability awareness and how to create a world without barriers.
“If we do the right thing, it’s not just the right thing, it’s massively beneficial for our economy, for our culture, and our society,” Hansen said. “Some of the greatest innovations that make the world better and more accessible are good for everybody.”
Inclusive design to benefit all
Hansen also highlighted the foundation’s partnership with PowerED™ and how it’s making a difference in inclusive building design.
The Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification™ Training program gives architects, contractors, engineers, urban planners, and other professionals a foundation for incorporating accessibility and inclusive design principles into the built environment, and for evaluating existing structures. The foundation partnered with PowerED™ by Athabasca University to offer the training online.
Hansen noted that most people tend to associate disability with a specific body part or a clinical diagnosis, but that isn’t necessarily the case. More than 50 per cent of people have had some disability (either temporary or permanent) or live with someone who does, he said. The crucial component to emphasize is that this is not a marginalized issue.
“Let’s educate, with a continuing education program, all the professionals out there in the design and built community and now they can get accredited and get a designation,” said Hansen. “Now they’re fully capable of being able to produce a building and make sure there are no unintended barriers.”
The Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification™
The online course provides participants with fundamental skills and knowledge required to rate a site using the Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification™.
The next intake for the training begins on Sept. 20, 2021. Space is limited, so register early!
Visit PowerED’s website to learn more about the online Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification™ Training.