Big Changes Coming to Some Signage in Mississauga

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Accessibility symbols in Mississauga and surrounding cities typically show a static image of a person sitting in a wheelchair.

Now, one parking space in Mississauga has sparked a change.

Mississauga took a leap recently by officially beginning to use the Dynamic Symbol of Access, the city revealed in a statement on May 16.

The new symbol is an upgrade on the International Symbol of Access, and shows a person in a wheelchair in forward motion.

The dynamic image was painted at one of the designated accessible parking spaces at the Ontario Court of Justice in Mississauga, located at 950 Burnhamthorpe Road West.

The image aims to emphasize movement and change how society views and interacts with people with disabilities.

"I was pleased to bring forward this initiative to City Council late last year," said Mayor Bonnie Crombie in a news release.

"As municipal leaders in accessibility, the City of Mississauga is committed to creating accessible and inclusive communities for everyone. Enhancing inclusivity and improving accessibility in our city allows everyone to participate fully in all we have to offer while also having a positive impact on our economy. This initiative is one of our many goals to continue removing barriers and creating awareness around accessibility."

Council first adopted the use of the new symbol on February 21 at city facilities.

This change is also advocated by the Forward Movement group to further assert disability rights in Ontario.

"The Accessibility Advisory Committee is thrilled to witness the implementation of the Dynamic Symbol of Access at the City," said Matt Mahoney, Councillor Ward 8 and Accessibility Advisory Committee member, in the news release.

"This is a great way to spur conversation around accessibility rights, and by working with community partners, we can continue our commitment to improve accessibility for all."

So, will we be seeing more of the new symbol?

The short answer: it may still take some time.

Provincial legislation limits where the Dynamic Symbol of Access can be used and defines where the International Symbol of Access should be used, according to the City.

There is no legislation for pavement markings, service counters, bus-stop signage, accessible eating signage, or trail signage.

"The City will be implementing the use of the Dynamic Symbol of Access on a go-forward basis at new City facilities on areas where signage is not legislated," added Raj Sheth, Director, Facilities and Property Management, in the statement.

"This will also include parking pavement markers at existing facilities."

What do you think of the new signage?

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