Inclusive workplaces: It’s more than just getting in the door

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Barriers in the built environment like stairs, manual doors, or narrow doorways are all common obstacles that stop people with disabilities, or aging seniors, from accessing workplaces. But it’s not just a matter of accessibility. People with mobility, hearing and vision disabilities face other barriers to employment as well.

Universal Design (UD) is an approach to design that increases the potential for developing a better quality of life for a wide range of individuals. It is a design process that enables and empowers a diverse population by improving human performance, health and wellness, and social participation (Steinfeld and Maisel, 2012). It creates products, systems, and environments to be as usable as possible by as many people as possible regardless of age, ability or situation.