How accessible is Cookstown?

DISABLED people in Cookstown are being urged to take part in the most comprehensive study into accessibility ever carried out in Northern Ireland.

Adapt NI, the voluntary organisation committed to improving access for disabled people, is carrying out the province-wide survey, on behalf of the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland.

Caroline Shiels, Adapt’s Development Manager, appealed to people with any disability to seize the opportunity to make their voices heard about local services.

Ms Shiels confirmed it was the broadest and most wide-ranging research into accessibility ever carried out in Northern Ireland.

She added: “Our researchers want to hear the views of disabled people in the cities, towns and villages and rural communities of Northern Ireland to find out exactly what it is like for them using everyday services that most people take for granted.”

Adapt’s team of researchers are interested in the views of all disabled people and want to know if there are differences in accessibility depending where disabled people live in Northern Ireland.

They are keen to gather the views of people with sight, hearing or mobility impairments, learning disability, mental health support needs, hidden impairments such as epilepsy, autism, diabetes, arthritis, or long term illnesses or conditions like cancer, HIV or chronic heart disease.

Using a ‘shopping basket’ of twenty public services, the research will ask how easy or difficult they are to use. Services include clothes shops, pubs, supermarkets, amusements, hotels, dentists, hairdressers, post offices and more.

You can add your views and share experiences of using services in town by completing the survey. It is online here You can also get the questions emailed to you, or give your answers over the phone at the numbers below.

Contact points are or call 028 9023 1211 Mon to Fri between 9.00am and 5.00pm. For text or outside office hours contact 07764 182 966.

Researchers can call you back and other formats can be provided on request. Responses are sought by Friday 14 March