Sidney, B.C.; The Sidney Museum and Archives is the winner of the 2015 Jeannette Hughes Accessibility Award that was handed out Saturday, June 6th during Access Awareness Day in Sidney. The award was presented by Jeannette’s daughter, Maureen Wingerter, to Museum President Ginni Stieva and Executive Director Peter Garnham.
The Museum was selected as the award winner based on renovations and improvements that have made it accessible for people with mobility issues such as those confined to wheelchairs or walkers. These improvements include a new entrance by elevator off the street level. Aisles through the displays have been set up and tested to ensure they are wide enough for wheelchairs to maneuver. These modifications have made Sidney’s historic and cultural museum accessible to all members of the public to enjoy.
Executive Director for the Museum, Peter Garnham expressed his appreciation of the award, stating that he had personally worked with Jeanette for many years and was deeply honoured to receive the award that was so aptly named for her.
Acting Mayor Cam McLennan provided an overview of the late Jeannette Hughes’ work during her nine years on Sidney Council and referred to her as Sidney’s accessibility leader.
Maureen Wingerter shared heartfelt memories of her mother and relayed a personal story of a recent back injury that incapacitated her. “I remember thinking; for me this pain and disability healed. But for mother and others like her, this is life”.
Access Awareness Day is held the first Saturday in June each year. It is a comprehensive campaign to raise awareness about disability, accessibility, and inclusion. But ultimately, it is about more than just one day a year. It is a call to respond creatively and purposefully to build a society where barriers to inclusion are removed, and to ensure the independence, self-esteem, dignity, and security of all citizens.
Media Contact: Mayor Steve Price
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