International Day of Persons with Disabilities
01 December 2022
This year, International Day of Persons with Disabilities takes place on Saturday 3rd of December. This is the day where we recognise people living with all kinds of disabilities, both visible and hidden. It is estimated that one billion people worldwide are living with disabilities, which can impact on their day to day lives and places barriers to inclusion in modern day society.
The aim of International Day of Persons with Disabilities is to promote the empowerment and help create opportunities for people living with a disability.
Following on from previous years, the Athlone Viaduct will be lit up in purple in support of the annual #PurpleLights campaign, a celebration of UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
“If you can turn Green for St Patrick's Day and Rainbow for Pride, you can turn Purple for the Disability community and the carers and families.” – Gary Kearney, founder of #PurpleLights
At Iarnród Eireann we are always striving towards providing a more inclusive service across each aspect of our business. Most recently we have taken some steps to creating a more inclusive service, some of these steps include:
- The introduction of a Quieter Coach. People travelling on the Dublin Heuston to Cork line can now avail of a quieter coach option. The aim of this coach is to improve services for customers with sensory issues, and to provide choice to customers who would rather sit in an area where phones and other devices should be silent. For more information about our quieter coach click here.
Introduction of the JAM Card. The JAM Card allows users to relay to others that they may need a little extra time in a simple, effective non-verbal manner. The JAM Card is useful when on public transport, in a retail or any other customer facing environment. For more information about the JAM Card, please click here.
‘Please offer me a seat’ initiative. We have partnered with Invisible Disability Ireland to introduced badges and cards. The “Please Offer Me a Seat” Badge and Card ensure that people with hidden disabilities have a seat in priority areas on public transport. For more information on our Please Offer Me a Seat initiative, please click here.
Sensory kits. We launched child and adult sensory packs for people with additional sensory challenges. These packs included headphones and fidget spinners.
With recommendations from the National Disability Authority and with the help of our disability advisors InterAccess, we have improved our website accessibility score to be scored between 80% and 90% across our website and app.
Disability User Group – Iarnród Éireann work closely with our Disability User Group from design phase of new projects to improving the day-to-day experience for customers with disabilities.
Welcome App – available at Kent station in Cork for customers and allows our team to meet the needs of an individual when they arrive at the station.
Changing Places – newly opened toilets at Connolly and Heuston stations.
We will continue our work to be a more inclusive environment for people with disabilities across each aspect of our service.