Glasgow councillors to experience street obstacles wearing sight loss simulation-spectacles
A cross-party group of Glasgow City Councillors will try to navigate around obstacles and clutter on the streets near George Square this morning wearing spectacles that mimic different sight loss conditions.
The exercise has been arranged by national charity RNIB Scotland in a bid to demonstrate the problems that blind and partially sighted residents experience when confronted with advertising boards, bollards, cycle racks and café furniture.
Wide-ranging concerns have been expressed by disability groups as Glasgow, and towns and cities across the country, engage in moves to redesign urban streetscapes, part of a post-lockdown bid to encourage more active travel like cycling.
The councillors taking part in the 15-minute walk will be guided by members of RNIB Scotland. The special spectacles they will wear simulate blotchy (retinopathy), cloudy (cataract) and tunnel (glaucoma) vision and other conditions.
Eileen Clarkson, the charity's campaigns officer, said: "We welcome this opportunity to let elected members from all the main parties find out more about how difficult just getting out and about can be when you have sight loss. The short route we have chosen, very close to the city chambers itself, has numerous obstacles that can present a hazard to the blind and partially sighted.
"This is why we continue to raise the profile of ongoing street developments from a visually impaired person's perspective. We believe the needs of all residents and visitors should be built into future developments to ensure some areas don't inadvertently become no-go areas for those with sight loss."