In a situation of risk, is the state’s early warning system accessible to all persons with disabilities?

Explanation

Systems that could be in place include: city lights, SMS-services, email services etc. But any existing system should not be limited to either radio or public address systems/sirens – in line with the two-sense principle. “Situation of risk” includes situations of armed conflict, humanitarian emergencies and the occurrence of natural disasters.

In detail

Summary

63 percent of experts replied with no- saying that in a case of emergency the state’s early warning system is not accessible to all persons with disabilities. Some of the countries were said to have an early warning system which is related to sound – which is not accessible to persons with hearing impairments or with intellectual disabilities (Moldova, Austria, Finland). Also experts reported that the evacuation routes in general are not accessible to all persons with any kind of disabilities (United States, Japan, Namibia) – the exit signs, the fire-extinguisher and other relevant information needed. Only 8 percent of respondents said their country’s early warning system is accessible.

Comments

Cynthy Haihambo, Namibia: “Most buildings have signs for alternative exits and also fire-extinguishers. But information on these are not always accessible in alternative communication formats such as Braille, sign language, pictorials, etc.”

Jyrki Pinomaa, Finland:  “The early warning system is based on the sound and is thus not accessible.”

CRPD Article

Relates to UN CRPD article No. 11 (Situations of risk and humanitarian emergencies)