A lot of people have caught on that they need to provide access for the disabled when they build something, but apparently access is only needed for Them.
You know, Them. There’s Them, and then there’s Us. They might be disabled, but We aren’t, and never will be.
Accessible restroom? Oh, no, because the restroom is only for employees, and none of our employees is disabled (or ever will be).
Elevator to the second floor? Oh, no, because the public doesn’t need to go to the second floor, and nobody who works there is disabled (or ever will be).
Access to the stage? Oh, no. There’s access for the audience (Them), but the actors and singers and stagehands (Us) aren’t disabled (and never will be).
True story: I went to an arts-related grants function yesterday at a brand new performing arts center. Brand new meaning built from the ground up in the Year of Our Lord 2008, the 18th Year of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The director climbed up the four steps to the stage, welcomed everybody, and made a pitch for organizations to rent her space. Perfect acoustics. Sprung floor stage. Reasonable rental rates.
Later in the evening I wandered over and asked her, quietly, if the stage was accessible. She looked at it for a few minutes, then said, “No, there are stairs in back, too.”
Because, you know, We won’t ever need access. That’s just for Them.