President spray painted new goal of "Ramp Up" campaign

21.11.2022 - 23:54
Mynd með færslu
 Mynd: Kristinn Þeyr Magnússon - RÚV
It has been decided to expand the Let's Ramp Up Iceland campaign from 1000 ramps to 1500. Haraldur Þorleifsson, the project's initiator, says it is crucial to follow building regulations. A business owner in the city centre considers the merchants to be generally optimistic about ramping up their businesses.

The Römpum upp Ísland project is considerably ahead of schedule, and Haraldur thanked the staff for that. Today, a ceremony was held in Mjóddinn in Reykjavík on the occasion of raising the ramp number. Among the guests were the mayor of Reykjavík, the prime minister and the president of Iceland, who was on the stage with Haraldur, who introduced the goal of reaching 1000 ramps. Guðni Th.  Jóhannesson, the president of Iceland, asked if that was enough and if we should not go for 1,500 ramps. He then took a spray bottle and changed the number to 1500. And with that, it was officially announced that the number of ramps would be increased by 500.

Poor accessibility for people with mobility impairments is not a new problem, but many feel it can be remedied. And sometimes, it takes an individual to push the system.

"I think we all live together in a community, and someone else has to step in when one person doesn't perform well enough. We all have our responsibilities, and I'm happy to be able to help."

Haraldur says that often the obstacle doesn't have to be big to be enough to hinder movement. He says it is important to ensure that the building regulations are followed, and, understandably, older houses do not meet all the requirements. However, unfortunately, homes are still being built where the same does not apply.

"A threshold is a threshold, and I think it's possible to smooth it all out, and we'll all be equal in the end."

Sóley Björk Axelsdóttir knows the obstacles firsthand, and she says she often goes on a scouting mission before going somewhere to see if she can make it. She says that many places in the city centre are still inaccessible, but with the ramp initiative, the situation will improve.

Frank Michelsen, a watchmaker, bought the current commercial premises on Skólavörðustíg; he has not opened the new shop yet, but immediately applied a ramp. "It must be accessible to everyone, and it can't be just for those who can stand on two legs. Everyone has to be able to get in."

Do you think this mentality is lacking in your colleagues in the retail business?
"No, I think people are very positive about doing something about it. It is impossible to exclude people who struggle to get around."

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