A view from Chicago

A view from Chicago
Photo by: Julian Boswell (Stock Exchange)

Hello, everybody! Today on Disabled Travelers, a special blog post to let you know what your humble host is up to. Yes, I had expected to do a full-on news post this time around and there are still some things I’d like to share, but first a little tidbit from me to you: I’m traveling to Chicago this week, for the second time in about a month, and that means you can expect a sequel to one of our most popular posts. Let’s quickly review as I pack up …

Disabled Access: Chicago was one of my first posts here on Disabled Travelers, way back in January of 2010. That post was actually inspired by a reader request, and it’s still one of my most successful: in fact, folks seem to visit it almost every day, even a year and a half later! Well, one thing led to another and I soon found myself writing a sequel, appropriately entitled Disabled Access: Chicago, Part 2.

At the time I wrote these, I had only spent a little time in the Windy City, but signs were very positive. With plenty of disabled hotels, lots of accessible attractions, plus resources like The Mayor’s Office for People With Disabilities and Easy Access Chicago, this really seemed like a welcoming place. I’ll be visiting friends over there, taking in an eclectic collection of sights before I head back to tell you all about it. With luck, I’ll learn a little more about the Windy City firsthand and be able to field your questions, too!

And what’s on my itinerary so far? I’ll be visiting with a bunch of friends for a semi-annual get-together, so plans are a little bit in flux. I do know that we’ll be heading to the Medieval Times Chicago Castle, and possibly Blue Man Group. Personally, I’ve always wanted to see Chicago in Chicago, but we’ll see!

And what’s going on elsewhere in the world of disabled travel? Well, you might want to skip this one from Bloomberg if you’re about to get on an airplane: TSA’s Forced Indignities Don’t Make Us Safer. Among the recent gaffes are some involving seriously ill, wheelchair-bound patients, so travel companions might want to take a look. The Very Unaccommodating Skies builds on this theme with a discussion of the challenges facing the European Union in its efforts to make air travel accessible.

The bottom line? Things are rough up there, and they’re in the middle of getting worse before they get better. Disabled travelers should visit the Association for Airline Passenger Rights and its Passengers With Disabilities page. Learn exactly what your rights are before you hit the terminal: it’s your best defense!

Before I go, a quick tip of the hat to Miss Wheelchair Wisconsin, who sources report is in the midst of raising money to travel to the Ms. Wheelchair America pageant in Michigan. All of us at Disabled Travelers are really hoping she gets to compete!

As for us, Disabled Travelers will be back next week – but right now, I have a plane to catch!


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