WHILE many Barbadian drivers do respect the disabled parking only signs, there are several who continue to blatantly disregard it.
In fact, Opposition MP for St. James North Edmund Hinkson, who is a director on the board of the Barbados Council for the Disabled, highlighted that several instances had been reported of some abled bodied persons engaging in this practice and insulting others, including those from the disabled community, who ask that they desist.
“We have heard even one case where a disabled lady told an able-bodied driver who had pulled into one of the spots not to do so and he told her that it is people like her that are not serving any purpose and cursed her in the worst way,” he disclosed.
He therefore called on the government to debate and enact legislation in Parliament providing for the full and effective participation and inclusion in society of persons with disabilities.
Speaking to the media on Thursday after presenting a petition with over 12,000 signatures aimed at ending the indiscriminate parking of able-bodied individuals in those spots reserved for the disabled to Prime Minister Freundel Stuart, President of the Barbados Council for the Disabled Maria Holder-Small encouraged “all service providers to seek the requirements necessary at the very least begin the implantation of minimum standards and guidelines for the accessibility of public facilities that offer services.”
She also extended profuse thanks to the Kiwanis Pride of Barbados for painting and re-painting disabled parking spaces offered by facilities across the island over the last eight weeks.
In addition, she lauded the social media ‘Wall of Shame’ page, which highlights “this injustice”.
“What is even more encouraging is that all of these people and organizations did this advocacy without us even having to ask them,” she stated, noting that in general the public supported this call. (JMB)