Food doesn't discriminate. Why should restaurants? Make restaurants wheelchair friendly!
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I was denied entry into a restaurant in Mumbai because I was on a wheelchair ! The restaurant staff refused to help me up a flight of steps. I felt helpless, humiliated and angry.
I am on a wheelchair but I want to lead a normal life. I am 26 years-old and I want to go to restaurants and have a good time with my family and friends.
But when incidents like these happen, I get a shocking reminder of our society’s apathy towards the disabled. Something as simple as going to a restaurant can be a traumatic experience for people like me, leaving us at the mercy of complete strangers.
I knew I had to do something! I decided to go and visit other restaurants in Mumbai which were claiming to be wheelchair accessible on a popular restaurant search website. The results were shocking!
Only 2% restaurants, out of the lot I visited, were accessible in terms of the entrance. In the rest of the restaurants I had to be literally carried up steps.
That’s why I started this petition asking Rahul Singh, the President of the National Restaurants Association of India to make restaurants across the country wheelchair friendly.
Rahul Singh is amongst one of the most recognized restaurateurs in the country today. He has several restaurants across India, including The Beer Cafe and many more. I want him to be the first one to take the lead by making all his restaurants wheelchair accessible.
If thousands of people sign my petition, we can get Rahul Singh to set a precedent for all the members of the National Restaurants Association of India to make their restaurants wheelchair friendly.
Since childhood, I was taught to live independently. Nobody likes to be carried up the steps or made to feel helpless because of their disability. I don’t want to be confined to my home. I want to travel, eat out and socialise just like you do.
Discomfort apart, being carried up the steps also comes with its own set of dangers. What if someone slips or loses grip while carrying a wheel chair user up a flight of stairs? A simple visit can land me in the hospital.
And that is why I am fighting for my rights as a disabled person. What people like me need are disabled friendly infrastructure. Infrastructure as simple as a portable ramp.
Restaurants should have a ramp at the entrance for total and easy access. This can be the first step towards making restaurants 100% disabled friendly.
I have joined hands with Enable Travel to make restaurants accessible to disabled people. Join us in our fight to make India more inclusive.
Sign this petition to bring access to all. Small steps lead to big changes.
Enable Travel’s experts and I also want people with disabilities across the country to join this movement #RampMyRestaurant. Come out of the shadows and make yourself heard.
Today: Virali is counting on you
Virali Modi needs your help with “.@NRAI_India @rahulbeer : Make Restaurants Wheelchair Friendly #RampMyRestaurant”. Join Virali and 77,650 supporters today.