Insufficient  consideration is given to people with handicaps. Car manufacturers advertise cars with large baggage compartments for wheelchairs, yet, very often folded wheelchairs do not fit in.

Airplane toilets are  notoriously tiny and uncomfortable; not only for a handicapped person, as they are very cramped. Every toilet should have a bar for the occupants to hold onto and the toilet paper rolls should be hung in a user-friendly spot.

Hotel showers need to be equipped with plastic chairs or wheelchairs that have been treated to withstand water, so that a handicapped person can sit while taking a shower.

Beaches also need to invest in specially designed wheelchairs that can run on rails into the ocean, enabling handicapped persons to get into the water for the first time in their lives. I witnessed the expression on a man’s face while he used one of them in Eilat, Israel. His expression was one of pure ecstasy.

There are supermarkets  that provide devices that magnify price tags for visually impaired people. Some doctor’s waiting rooms have chairs without backs or armrests that are not possible for a handicapped person to feel safe on and offices put official forms onto tables that are too high to allow easy access to the handicapped person.

I am friendly with a couple  who used the  concept or universal design when building their home with the needs of one of the occupant’s in mind at all times. Their kitchen was cleverly designed to cater to her needs, The doors aresufficiently wide to allow wheelchair access or ambulance stretcher access. Their shower is large and the toilet higher than the standard ones. Toilet paper rolls were hung in a sensible place. Even the flower beds in the garden have been raised and the outdoor space resembles ‘The Secret Garden’ by France’s Hodgson Burnett.

All the floors are covered with non-slip tiles. Light switches are at a comfortable height too. A great deal of thought was put into the construction of this house and they did a wonderful job. She was responsible for the charming decor.


  1. Alan Lewis

    Jill these ideas need to be “taught” at the scholl of Architecture in Haifa and in Jerusalem design classes at Bezalel. Alan

  2. Sheri de Grom

    Jill – Your suggestions are spot on. Now that Tom is confined to a wheelchair most of the time and I find myself pushing him over tough spots that could have easily been paved over, etc. If we want to go out to dinner or the theater, it can be almost impossible. Even in medical departments, it seems not much thought is given to those who need mobile transport. This is an excellent post.
    I’ve missed talking with you. I do hope love, laughter and lots of sunshine are coming your way. Sheri

    1. Jill Sadowsky

      Dear Sheri, Thanks so much for writing. I have mailed you s couple of times but you probably didn’t get them. How is Tom doing? How are you managing? Do you get any financial help, Sheri? I think of you so often? Are you still working? I have stopped blogging but reply to hundreds of emails and phone calls. I am very happy with Alan but having two sets of children and grandchildren, takes a lot of time. But, it’s been worth it. Keep in touch if you have the time. Sincerely, Jill

      Sent from my iPhone

      1. Sheri de Grom

        Jill, The way I keep in touch with many regarding Tom is through blogging. It’s now a full-time job and no, there’s no financial help. I almost never get to my e-mail and deleted 66,000 at once just a few days ago. Tom is critical.


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