A More Acessible World
Muse Science Magazine for Kids|January 2022
Some Surprising Obstacles
By Lisa Christensen

What do you think about when you wait at a crosswalk? What about browsing the internet? Chances are, if you're not visually impaired, you don't think much about these everyday activities as you're doing them. But for blind and low-vision people, these sorts of things can be dif cult if the people designing them don't take steps to make them accessible.

About 90 percent of people who are legally blind” have some sight-they can make out some amount of light or movement. But their vision isn't good enough to allow them to interact with the world in the same ways as seeing people. They might use a seeing-eye dog or white cane to get around, or use a text reader to help them access written material. Audio descriptions of scenes in TV shows and movies also let blind people enjoy the latest streaming hit and blockbuster.

Some Surprising Obstacles

In stores and restaurants, automatic kiosks are convenient options for many people, but can make life more difficult for blind people if they're not designed with accessibility in mind. Those kiosks often use a touch screen, which is harder for blind people to use than something with tactile buttons.

Delivery apps can be inconvenient, too, says Everette Bacon, president of the Utah chapter of the National Federation of the Blind. “Delivery is something you would think blind people would welcome and we do, but a lot of the delivery applications were very inaccessible and they also weren't thought of with us in mind at all, he says.

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