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DHHS Releases Guide to Accessible N.C. Travel Destinations for People with Disabilities

 

For release: Immediate    June 8, 2012
Contact: Jim Jones (919) 855-4840

RALEIGH – N.C. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Secretary Al Delia announced today the release of the sixth edition of ACCESS North Carolina, a publication that provides details on the accessibility of tourist sites across North Carolina. The latest edition, available in time for summer travelers, provides accessibility notes for hundreds of sites.

“It is encouraging to see that more and more site operators realize the value of providing access to our citizens with disabilities,” Secretary Delia said. “From seashore aquariums to the mile-high bridge at Grandfather Mountain, our state has a lot to offer, and we want all of our citizens to have the opportunity to enjoy it.”

The sixth edition of “ACCESS North Carolina: A Vacation and Travel Guide for People with Disabilities” – the only guide to accessible travel destinations – is available online and at visitor centers in some of the state’s most visited cities. Printed copies are also available upon request. It improves upon previous editions with more detail about what matters most to people with disabilities, such as proximity to appropriate parking, doorway widths, door pull types, sink heights and faucet types, whether building entryways are level, and if videos providing historic perspectives include closed captioning. Special accommodations can be important to people with vision, hearing, physical and intellectual disabilities as well as those within the autism spectrum.

The guide was assembled by the DHHS Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services from information gathered from visits to sites with a tape measure, and from phone calls and questionnaires returned that were sent to hundreds of sites across the state.

Funded through fees for special license plates, the ACCESS North Carolina guide incorporates information about nearly 400 sites. Most of the funds go toward improving accessibility at sites, such as adding captioning to visitor center videos or improving physical access at campgrounds and bathhouses.

A digital version of the book may be downloaded online via the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services’ publications website at www.ncdhhs.gov/dvrs/pdf/ACCESS-NC.pdf. A text version is available at www.ncdhhs.gov/dvrs/pdf/ACCESS-NC.txt.

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