LaFave wants new handicapped signs

LANSING — State Rep. Beau LaFave recently introduced a plan to update public signage for handicapped access that emphasizes people rather than disabilities.

The plan allows for the symbol to be a dynamic character leaning forward with a sense of movement and control of a wheelchair. The plan also requires the new symbol to be used by local and state governments. The new symbol will also remove the word “handicapped.”

“The new signage is a positive change in the right direction. Instead of a stick figure sitting upright in a wheelchair, the new signage creates a conversation and emphasizes the person rather than the disability,” said LaFave, of Iron Mountain. “By changing signs, we can change minds.”

New signage will not be required until existing signs must be replaced.

New York and Connecticut have already embraced the idea of upgrading their handicapped signage.

The United States Civil Rights Commission and the Department of Civil Rights support the bills.

House Bills 5876 and 5877 were referred to the Michigan House Health Policy Committee.

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