Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR) Holds Meeting of its Inclusive Design Advisory Council (IDAC)

The Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR) recently held the first meeting of its Inclusive Design Advisory Council (IDAC) in Winnipeg, Manitoba. This council, made up of eight experts, advisors and activists in the field of disability rights, will assist the CMHR in providing visitors with a universally inclusive and satisfying experience, regardless of age or ability. The CMHR is striving to set a new benchmark for museum accessibility, incorporating inclusive design into all aspects of its exhibits, programming, the building itself, and the Museum’s business practices.

“While we have strived to engage with experts in the field of accessibility and disability rights from the early stages of our development, the establishment of this council represents a major milestone for the Canadian Museum for Human Rights,” said Stuart Murray, President and Chief Executive Officer of the CMHR. “True inclusion means providing services and design that allow the opportunity for everyone to participate and enjoy what the Museum has to offer. IDAC will help us provide each and every visitor that visits us in-person or on-line an unforgettable experience.”

“The Canadian Museum for Human Rights is a tremendously exciting project, it not only will tell the story of the struggle of people with disabilities for equality but it provides an opportunity to substantially raise the bar on the accessibility of museums for people with a wide range of disabilities,” said Laurie Beachell, National Coordinator of the Council of Canadians with Disabilities. “The Museum is to be congratulated for creating the Inclusive Design Advisory Council.”

IDAC will provide analysis, identify gaps, and give feedback to the CMHR on a wide variety of elements of the Museum’s development including, among others, exhibit development, visitor services, education and programming, visitor research, digital media and technology, web, and prototyping. While the CMHR will feature a great deal of technology throughout its exhibit program, this technology will not be a barrier to full and equitable participation.

The composition of the Inclusive Design Advisory Council includes people with a diversity of abilities, including visible and invisible disabilities, various languages (profiles) and extensive experience in advising on accessibility and inclusivity. Members of the IDAC are committed to two-year terms

The Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR), currently under construction in Winnipeg, Manitoba, was established to provide a place for Canadians, and the world, to explore the subject of human rights and to encourage human rights action. With construction slated for completion in 2012, the CMHR is the first national museum to have been established in over 40 years, and the first national museum to be located outside the National Capital Region. For more information about the CMHR please visit http://humanrightsmuseum.ca/

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