Panel to evaluate campus accessibility

In response to students' concerns about handicap accessibility on campus, Chris Hilderbrant of the Rochester Center for Disability Rights will visit Geneseo on Wednesday, April 16 to provide insights into improving accessibility awareness.

Hilderbrant, who uses a wheelchair, will tour the school with students, faculty and staff and then participate in a panel discussion aimed at describing the difficulty of navigating Geneseo's campus with a mobility impairment.

Several students have pointed out that Geneseo's geographic location makes it very difficult to maneuver, and many feel that the school has not been as accommodating as it should to help students with both permanent and temporary mobility impairments.

Senior Catherine Urban, who was forced to use crutches for five months on campus, said that she feels that the school has not been proactive enough to ensure the safety of disabled students.

"Given the climate and topography of our campus, is it too much to ask of the administration to implement a program that would assure the safety of its students?" Urban asked.

The campus tour will start at 11:30 a.m. on April 16 in front of Erwin Hall. Students, faculty and staff are invited to join the tour, and crutches and wheelchairs will be available for those who wants to simulate the difficulty of navigating campus with a mobility impairment. The tour will be limited to 20 participants; those interested should e-mail Tour participants are encouraged to wear blue in significance of the color of handicapped accessibility signs.

At 1:30 p.m., the open dialogue will take place in Newton 204. Student group Students Educating About Ableism is sponsoring the events.