Venues don’t meet accessibility needs

Our accessibility research suggests that businesses across industries do not provide adequate accessibility for their customers with disabilities.

According to 1 of 3 people with disabilities, there is much to improve to provide adequate accessibility in the physical environment for businesses across industries. This is according to our survey.*Accessibility research* conducted by Handiscover Accessibility in 2021, indicates that almost a third (32%) of people with disabilities say that different venues have not met their accessibility needs. It’s thought that more than 45 Million people in Europe live with a long-term illness or disability, highlighting the importance of this research. Handiscover believes that if accessibility, accessibility information and training were in place, the EU economy could benefit by up to 25% against the current level – that’s almost 196 Billion Euros.**

“Improving accessibility is not just a ‘nice’ thing to do, it is the ‘right’ thing to do and can generate huge increases in revenue for venues! The Handiscover Accessibility Management Program exists to help property owners and property managers across various industries like hospitality, offices, retail, shopping malls and more, work with and improve accessibility in an easy way to the benefit of the day-to-day lives of millions of people who live with a disability.” says Magnus Berglund, Accessibility Expert at Handiscover (April 2022).

Handiscover Accessibility is now calling on businesses to improve their accessibility or accessibility information, which is much needed according to the survey. Sebastien Archambeaud CEO of Handiscover Accessibility: “Ever since we launched Handiscover, our first product that is an accommodation booking website for people with disabilities, our aim has simply been to gather unique accessibility data to make the booking of accommodations easier for those with disabilities. We have then taken the knowledge and experience we gathered to help venues like shopping malls, retail, hotels, arenas or any kind of building, to improve accessibility and knowledge. We want to let businesses know that improving accessibility is not just a cost burden, but a means to improve business performance by catering to more customers”.

Our research also revealed that 58% of the population with some kind of disability who required assistance, say that staff at hotels were not as knowledgeable about accessibility needs as they could have been. Thus demonstrating the importance of Accessibility training and education among staff, not just at hotels, but across industries. 

Improving accessibility is not a cost burden, but a means to improve business by catering to more customers”.

- Sebastien Archambeaud, CEO of Handiscover Accessibility.

Businesses needing help to improve accessibility can sign up for Handiscover’s Accessibility Management Program. The program includes accessibility data management and assessment and accessibility & disability education.

About the Survey

*Handiscover surveyed 961 people in the UK, Sweden, Denmark and the US aged 18-65+, who have a disability or a family member who has a disability. The survey was conducted in February and March 2021. The survey asked a range of questions about Accessibility in public spaces including hotels, shopping malls, offices and public transport. 

**European Commission, “Economic Impact and Travel Patterns of Accessible Tourism in Europe

– Final Report”, 2014. 

Below are some of the results regarding the state of accessibility in shopping malls:

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