Throughout the pandemic, many non-disabled people have experienced the frustration of being unable to access their places of work, shops and recreational spaces. For wheelchair users and those with mobility issues, however, lack of access is an everyday experience – regardless of closures and curfews.
New Mobile App to Rate Accessibility of Public Venues
Access Rating, a social enterprise based in Leicester, has recently launched a new mobile application which enables wheelchair users to rate their personal experiences of access within shops, restaurants, and public buildings nationwide. The Access Rating app seeks to promote examples of good practice, whilst highlighting the ongoing need for greater inclusion within industry sectors. However, aside from the encouraging uptake of the app by disabled users, the organisation has further reason to be excited about the journey ahead of them …
Meet the New Ambassadors of Access Rating
– Cue Access Rating’s recently appointed Access Ambassadors; a vibrant team of individuals who share the organisation’s dedication to disability equality. Each is prolific in their work on disability and has much to offer to their new positions and the wider disabled community:
Matt Hampson: Writer, Inspirational Speaker, Founder of the Matt Hampson Foundation
Since his rugby accident in 2005, Matt has become a figure of inspiration for those who have suffered similar catastrophic injuries, through his tireless work within the Matt Hampson Foundation. Matt relayed his delight in becoming an Ambassador for Access Rating:
“It is really good to get involved with this initiative. The app is so useful for disabled people to be able to find out how accessible venues are based on the experiences of others. I am also looking forward to seeing how Access Ratings employment projects grow to support young disabled people in our community.”
Chloe Tear, Writer: 22; Disability Blogger and Award-winning writer
Chloe writes candidly in her eponymous blog on her personal experiences of living with a disability. Her humour and bravery in tackling even the most difficult of subjects are what makes Chloe’s writing so engaging and illuminating – and an asset to the organisation.
Tia Carter: Winner of Miss Leicestershire 2020
Tia, a training mechanical engineer and dance teacher, is the most recent addition to the Access Rating team. As a non-disabled person, Tia intends to use her ongoing learning of disability equality to connect with others on the same path of understanding disability, and the barriers that disabled people face.
Joshua Reeves: Disability Advocate, Commonwealth Youth Form
Joshua has been working as a disability advocate since 2015, when he started his campaign, ‘Don’t Call me Special’. Part of his involvement with Access Rating will be to raise awareness of disability, inclusion and access in schools and colleges across the UK.
Emma Muldoon: Writer: ‘Simply Emma’ Accessible Travel & Disability Blog
Emma has inspired many through her work to raise awareness of Limb-Girdle Muscular Dystrophy (LGMD), and of the wider issues of disability. Emma was awarded the Prime Minister’s Points of Light Award which recognises outstanding individual volunteers; a testament to her work in effecting positive change for the disabled community.
Not just a Pretty Interface: the wider work of Access Rating
Mark Esho, co-founder of Access Rating is optimistic about the impact the new Ambassadors will have on Access Rating’s work and outreach. “We are delighted to have such pro-active and dedicated people on board. Our organisation is not just about rating venues for accessibility; we are part of the growing movement from within our communities, which aims to promote awareness and encourage more meaningful commitment to access for disabled people. Matt, Tia, Emma, Joshua and Chloe will add to Access Rating’s positive voice in what is still a culture of exclusion for many.”
“Access Rating works with disabled people seeking employment support, and with businesses wishing to improve accessibility through their access audit service. Their new mobile app, Access Rating enables visitors to rate UK venue accessibility and is available for download. Visit the Access Rating website for further information or download the app directly from Android stores.”