Due to lack of having accessibility in public spaces like parks and fields; women, children, and disabled people cannot go there though they have interest. Thus, presence of women and children is very less and not a single disabled person is seen there. “Towards an Inclusive Society: Access of Females and People with Disabilities to Public Spaces” a research done by WBB Trust found that there are so many barriers including accessibility in public spaces at Dhaka. The findings from the research ‘Accessibility of women and disabled people at public spaces’ was shown, today 25th October’17, at seminar room, WBB Trust.
Four types of disabled people and nondisabled women from different ages were included in this research. Besides, honorable people from nongovernmental organizations, social workers, and people who work for disabled people all put their valuable opinions here. In the discussion there was an appeal to create an inclusive society through accessible public spaces.
The chair was Gaous Pearee, admin and director WBB Trust; Debra Efroymson, regional director, Health Bridge, Canada, was chief guest and the seminar was moderated by Naznin Kabir, deputy program manager WBB Trust. The special guests were Julia Ahmmed, executive director, Nova consultancy Bangla; Sabina Hossain, principal, Society Welfare for Autistic Children (SWAC); Advocate Mosharraf Hossain Majumder; Afroza Najnin, senior journalist; Nazrana Yasmin Hira, program coordinator, Manusher Jonno Foundation; Ruksana Sultana, executive director, Breaking the silence; Salma Mahbub general editor, Protibondhi Nagorik Songhothon Porishad.
Debra Efroymson said that comparing with women, the numbers of males and boys in public spaces are more. However, women more than 25 years old go to public spaces and never they make them busy there with playing rather than walking and sitting. Though, the number of women not more than 40 years old take part in group exercise was very less. Furthermore, disabled people are not seen there and this is one of the barriers in our society. Thus, we prefer to have an inclusive society.
Advocate Mosharraf Hossain Majumder mentioned that disabled people right and protection law, 2013, clause 34 (2) sub claws (1), says “All public spaces, where people go on need to be accessible as early as possible”. However, we do not have any chances to visit the public spaces in capital at present.
Julia Ahmmed says, “Disabled people give equal importance on accessibility, job, and entertainment. In this case, all public spaces need to be designed according to the necessities of disabled people; otherwise, the spaces will turn into useless.
Salma Mahbub says “We emphasize on beautify the public spaces rather than making them accessible. Again, we do not have any crystal clear policies regarding accessibility”. Therefore, she appealed to make the policies suitable by the age.