The monitoring of the architectural accessibility of public places in Kharkiv was conducted jointly with the Kharkiv Reform Coalition, the NGO “Creavita” and the Kharkiv branch of the Ukrainian Leadership Academy in the spring 2019.
Before the start of monitoring, on April 4, 2019 we organized training for students of the Ukrainian Leadership Academy, where Lesya Valyaeva, co-chairperson of the Coalition "OGO-Cherkasy" and chairperson of the NGO "Cherkasy Regional Non-Governmental Organization "Life without Barriers" told about the UN Convention on the rights of Persons with Disabilities, models of disability, requirements and standards of the accessible environment for low-mobility groups, methods of conducting audits of accessibility of public institutions and the environment.
Immediately after the training, students formed 5 teams, made separate routes for each team and conducted a pilot monitoring of the architectural accessibility of facilities located near the Ukrainian Leadership Academy - pharmacies, cafes, shops, banks, Sport palace, Department of Housing and Utilities. The teams used meters, tools to measure the angle of the ramps and used questionnaires to audit the facilities accessibility proposed by the National Assembly of People with Disabilities of Ukraine.
In total, they checked 25 facilities, the questionnaires were submitted for revision to the experts of architectural accessibility. After the monitoring, the teams discussed the difficulties they came across during the monitoring, shared their experience and received advice from the trainer.
Monitoring was also conducted on May 22 and 28, 2019. To do this, the NGO "Creavita" has developed daily routes for five teams, each route containing 5 facilities, including shopping and office centers, theaters, museums, cafes, city gardens and parks, and public toilets. The monitoring was carried out by mixed teams, each of which included: a representative of the Kharkiv Reform Coalition, who monitored the route and time, if necessary, communicated with representatives of the facility under monitoring; 3-4 students of the Ukrainian Academy of Leadership, who logged information in the questionnaire for auditing the accessibility of facilities, made photo and video recordings; a person in a wheelchair checked the chosen facility for accessibility.
According to the results of the monitoring, 67 facilities of the city infrastructure were checked for accessibility, 40 of them were recognized as inaccessible. Among all the facilities, the project team identified 21 priority facilities, prepared a separate letter with a list of identified violations and sent them to the Commissioner of the President of Ukraine for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, Director of the Department of Social Protection of Kharkiv Region Council, Director of the Department of Labor and Social Policy of Kharkiv City Council, directors of institutions. On October 29, 2019, they held a meeting of the Committee for Ensuring Accessibility of Low-Mobility Groups to Social and Engineering-Transport Infrastructure Facilities of the Kharkiv City Council. At this meeting, the representatives of the facilities with violations reported on their correction.
The monitoring results were plotted on the accessibility map of Kharkiv: