I walked around my office today to see if it incorporated elements of universal design. Although we have a long (long) way to go, I was able to give a couple “thumbs up!”
To enter our office, there is an accessible entrance button that staff and visitors who use wheelchairs can use to automatically open the door. This is also a great feature for people whose hands are full and cannot reach the handle and who need the extra time the door stays open to pull the hand dolly through loaded with boxes.
All of the individual office and bathroom doors have a lever style handle instead of a knob making it easy for anyone to open a door. Our lights have been dimmmed so they are not as harsh (athough I think that may be only because our lazy landlord hasn’t replaced burned out bulbs).
And, we have several rolling computer cart stations that can be raised for those who need more height because of wheelchairs or beer guts!
We have libraries for those who want to get their text fix — lots of books and journals. A couple of our projects have developed on-line learning modules for professionals and parents – they incorporate slides, videos, audio, quizes, etc. We have a smart board – but no one really has been trained to use it! We also have capability to bring people who work off site into staff meetings through phone, video and things like ‘go to meeting’ – again, few take advantage of the technology. We have a fairly static website and I don’t think we put any staff time into our facebook or twitter accounts. We are missing out on reaching new audiences!