Ohio group says 'handicap' mocks those with disabilities, wants signs changed

Redesigned handicapped symbol

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

The Columbus Dispatch says that the advocates prefer the word "accessible," the wheelchair symbol or an updated icon that looks like a wheelchair figure on the move.

An effort to update the icon has gained ground in many states, including New York where the new image is seen as symbolizing an active, in-motion version of a life with a physical disability.

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

A member of the Self-Advocate Advisory Council of the Franklin County Board of Developmental Disabilities says the word handicap sounds like a term used to make fun of people with disabilities. Marci Straughter says the group wants to make the change happen.


(The Associated Press contributed to this article.)