Published On: Mon, Nov 28th, 2022

Focus on New Technologies For Disabled At Accessibility Fair in İstanbul

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By Janet Ekstract

İSTANBUL- İstanbul is preparing for its 12th edition of the Accessibility Fair and Awareness Summit opening Dec. 1.  The sixth summit of its kind in the world, it includes four days of exploring the latest technologies for those physically challenged and those with more severe disabilities. The summit goal is also to raise awareness about issues that face the disabled community on a daily basis. Turkish President Erdogan had declared Turkiye to be the Year of Accessibility for the physically challenged in 2020 where the Turkish government tripled its efforts to draft new regulations and policies to assist the disabled which was headed up Turkiye’s Ministry of Family and Social Services. New rules were made to create ubiquitous accessibility in shopping malls, airports, public transport, public buildings, on the bus system and in gyms. In addition, a new set of guidelines was issued by the ministry for the inspection of compliance with accessibility rules. Meanwhile, committees were set up in every province to monitor revisions to buildings and vehicles to ensure accessibility.

Chair of the White Crescent (Beyazay) Association, Lokman Ayva  whose organization is one of the sponsors, commented at a recent press conference on the fair and summit that will be held at the international level with ministries and public agencies working in the field along with universities and NGOs attending. Companies in the private sector will also attend focusing on accessibility for those with physical challenges. As Ayva commented: “It will be a showcase of services and technologies (for the disabled), a sum of what has been done for them and what the future holds for them in terms of accessibility,” he said. He said disabled citizens would have a chance to see the services provided and the fair would also help participants exchange views on new technologies.

Organizers said the purpose of the event is to introduce visitors to technologies, commercial solutions and other services to minimize the barrier to accessing health and rehab services for those with disabilities as well as contribute to their inclusion in all areas of social life. A number of issues face those who are physically challenged such as a lack of ramps for wheelchairs, a lack of wheelchairs and cars that take over designated parking spaces for the disabled, Experts on the topic, have pointed out that one of the greatest obstacles for the disabled and physically challenged is the attitude of those who are not. And this fair and summit aims to highlight the need not only for new technologies of assistance for the disabled and physically challenged but for a need for that sense of inclusion and understanding that a majority of society have yet to acknowledge.

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