This was forwarded to me today and I think it is both interesting and important to share.
|Resources for Independent Living with Vision Loss|
|American Foundation for the Blind | Reader’s Digest Partners for Sight|
Livable Communities Project– Feedback Needed by March 15
In 2003, AFB reported on a Livable Communities Project that identified criteria that people who are blind or visually impaired in the United States used to rate livable communities. Through a series of focus groups, interviews, and surveys, AFB developed a list of criteria that participants who were blind or visually impaired recommended to determine the “livability” of a community.
The criteria were as follows:
- Getting around –availability of public transit, pedestrian-friendliness or "walkability," access to airports, trains, and other intra-city transport (ranked highest)
- Community integration/general sense of acceptance (sense of tolerance towards diversity)
- Safety (low crime rates, minimal automobile traffic, few dangerous intersections)
- Employment (availability of jobs for people who are blind or visually impaired at various skill levels)
- Education/arts/recreation (formal and informal continuing education, theater and movies with described audio, accessible sports arenas, restaurants with braille menus)
- Cost of living/housing (affordable homes and apartments)
- Access to services/necessities of daily living (blindness services, government offices for people with disabilities, medical care, veterinarians, grocery stores, post offices in close proximity).
Using the criteria, 6 cities were chosen:
- Charlotte, North Carolina
- Berkeley, California
- Kalamazoo, Michigan
- New York, New York
- La Crosse, Wisconsin and Louisville, Kentucky (tied)
These were the runners-up:
- Philadelphia, PA
- Silver Spring, MD
- Austin, TX
- Eugene, OR
- Seattle, WA
- Boston, MA
- Santa Monica, CA
- Urbana, IL
- Revere, MA
We would like your feedback both on the criteria and the cities that were chosen in 2003. This request is informal just to give us a sense of what is going on in the country. But we do need your feedback quickly– by Tuesday, March 15. Please email progers.
Please respond to the following questions:
- Are there additional or different criteria that should be considered?
- Do the cities chosen in 2003 still meet the criteria?
- If not, what has changed?
- Are there other cities that should be considered?