Sarnia, ON / June 9, 2014 — In an effort to better communicate with and serve its citizens with disabilities, the City of Sarnia now offers an app that empowers people with physical disabilities to access www.sarnia.ca. People who cannot browse the web using conventional methods due to conditions such as paralysis or amputation can use this app, courtesy of the City, to navigate completely hands free using tools like motion technology and voice-activated controls. Using the app, people with disabilities can now visit the City’s website to view community news, voter information, recreational resources and utilize services like the City’s online parking ticket payment system.
In Canada, 17% of people self-identify as having a physical disability and 1 in 4 families has at least one member with a disability. By implementing the app, Sarnia is able to better engage and serve people with disabilities living in or visiting the City, helping them increase their participation in their community and government.
The eSSENTIAL Accessibility app™ provides keyboard and mouse replacement tools that help people with physical, reading and age-related disabilities navigate the web. The app is free of charge to the end-user and can be downloaded by clicking the blue wheelchair and keyboard symbol located on the homepage of www.sarnia.ca. Once downloaded, the app can be used on any website.
Visitors who click on the icon are directed to a special City of Sarnia landing page (http://essentialaccessibility.com/cityofsarnia/). Here, they can download the app, learn more about Sarnia’s accessibility programs and practices, connect with important online services, and learn more about job opportunities with the City.
“Sarnia is committed to full access and equality to the services paid for by the taxpayers of the community but we are not there yet or even close,” says Mike Bradley, Mayor of Sarnia. “This program is one small step on a journey and we have a long way to go before we are successful in reaching that goal in providing services, access and employment for all of our citizens.”
“We’re honoured to be helping cities like Sarnia eliminate the barriers to online government information, outreach and services facing many people with disabilities,” says Simon Dermer, Managing Director of eSSENTIAL Accessibility. “By joining the coalition, the City of Sarnia is reinforcing a message of citizen engagement and paving the way for a truly more inclusive community environment and government process.”
About eSSENTIAL Accessibility:
eSSENTIAL Accessibility helps organizations build loyalty with consumers and job seekers with disabilities. We offer our partners an assistive technology app that enables people with disabilities to interact with their brand online, and strategic marketing and communications campaigns tailored to meet and exceed their customer service, HR and diversity & inclusion goals. By joining our growing coalition, leading brands from around the world are creating sustainable business and social value by engaging and serving people with disabilities
About the City of Sarnia:
The City of Sarnia is a municipality of approximately 73,000 people situated on the south shore of Lake Huron at the headwaters of the St. Clair River. The City is noted for its breathtaking sky blue water and beautiful waterfront parks. Sarnia is a vibrant and healthy city, characterized by its diverse economic base, affordable neighbourhoods, and extensive system of parks and trails. Cultural opportunities in the City abound with libraries, art galleries, theatres, and special events that are offered throughout the year.
We invite you to investigate the City and discover opportunities for an excellent quality of living and the potential of a lifestyle rich with opportunities for education, employment, retirement and recreation.