- Be aware that some wheelchair users may choose to transfer themselves out of their wheelchairs (into an office chair, for example) for the duration of the meeting.
- The main issue facing a colleague who is a wheelchair user is access. Therefore, access to the building, toilets, canteen or other meeting places should be ramped. Remember to avoid unnecessary obstacles in pathways, rest areas, bathrooms and work areas.
- Rearrange furniture or objects in a room to accommodate wheelchairs, scooters or other mobility aids.
- Speak to the person and not just directly to other individuals who may be in their company.
- When speaking to a person in a wheelchair or on crutches for more than a few minutes, sit in a chair. Place yourself at that person's eye level to facilitate conversation.
- Do not lean on a wheelchair or any other assistive device.
- Do not assume the individual wants to be pushed, ask first.
- If you telephone the individual, allow the phone to ring longer than usual to allow extra time for them to reach the telephone.
Wednesday, 2 July 2008