International Encyclopedia of Rehabilitation

Accessibility Symbol

Symbolizing a person in a wheelchair, this stick figure indicates places that allow access by individuals in wheelchairs, on crutches, or otherwise disabled. Examples of such places are reserved parking space wide enough to complete opening of car door, ramp with an incline not greater than 8.3% (1 cm rise in 12 cm), door at least 80 cm wide, toilet with grab bar, low-placed telephone. Also used to identify the vehicle of a person with a disability; some states in the US have adopted the symbol to mark license plates of automobiles. Designed by Suzanne Koefoed of Denmark as a project of the Scandinavian Design Students Organization and adopted internationally in 1969 by the eleventh World Congress on the Rehabilitation of the Disabled.

The accessibility symbol


Eisenberg MG. 1995. Dictionary of Rehabilitation. New York: Springer Publishing Company. 375 p. Used with permission.

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