Ohio Group Pushes To Remove 'Handicap' From Signs

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An advocacy group for people with developmental disabilities is trying to get the word "handicap" dropped from new accessibility signs in central Ohio.

Advocates say they prefer the word "accessible," the wheelchair symbol or an updated icon that looks like a wheelchair figure on the move.

Cincinnati officials have a similar resolution on the books.

Columbus and Franklin County officials said they are willing to drop the handicap or handicapped descriptions from new and replacement signs for parking areas, buildings, bathrooms and other areas.

Jennifer Cunningham was the first to sign the proposal.

"I think that's it's been outdated," Cunningham said. "They mention handicap, and I think accessible will feel more comfortable with that."

The proposal is not to change signs that are already up, mainly because of how much it would cost.

But instead, the change would affect new signs and signs that are replaced.

Jed Morison with the Franklin County Board of Developmental Disabilities said that Franklin County Commissioners are in support of the change.

"It's not that anyone's done anything wrong," Morison said. "It's just an effort to update and bring things up to speed and more positive language. I think it's good. I think it's a positive thing."

Cunningham says the change cannot come soon enough.

"I hope this passes, because it helps a lot of people to feel comfortable," she said.

Several cities across the country have already adopted the new signage.

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