Orange trick-or-treating signs help make Halloween more accessible
When Rich Padulo was decorating his Toronto home for Halloween last year, he quickly realized how difficult it is for some kids to trick-or-treat.
“(I) locked eyes with a little boy in a wheelchair going down the street, immediately I realized he couldn’t come to my front door,” Padulo told CTV News Channel on Wednesday.
Like the majority of homes in the neighbourhood, Padulo’s house has stairs leading up to the door, meaning this boy and other kids with disabilities would likely be forced to skip his house when trick-or-treating.
To solve the problem, Padulo developed orange signs with the words “accessible trick or treating” on them. The signs let parents and trick-or-treaters know they won’t have to deal with stairs when coming for candy.
“(The) simple idea was: ‘Let’s take stairs out of the equation as much as possible,’” Padulo said. “The concept is: do it out of your garage, do it out of the bottom of your stairs, if it’s a rainy night, if it’s cold, just be aware that someone might not be able to come up your stairs.”
Padulo was the only person to have one of these signs last year, but the real estate company RE/MAX has since bought 2,500 of them to spread across Ontario. He has also managed to give away nearly 150 signs to people in his neighbourhood near the Toronto waterfront.
Padulo isn’t the only one working to make Halloween traditions more accessible. Frolic’s Haunt in Toronto is believed to be the first fully-accessible haunted house in Canada. Although it was cancelled this year due to poor weather, the attraction caters its frights to people with a wide range of disabilities, including mobile, visual and hearing.
Here's a simple thing you can do this year for #Halloween that will make a big difference in a kid's night. Those with accessibility challenges get to experience Halloween because this sign tells them, days before, you're taking stairs out of the process. Between now and Halloween, visit www.treataccessibly.com and Padulo X will make you a free lawn sign that tells kids with special needs your heart and home is open for business this Halloween :) Feel free to share this post with all. Any let's make people happy. Everyone. #disability #inclusion #disabilityawareness #access #trickortreat #happyhalloween