Saturday, February 5, 2011

Restaurant Challenges

Stock photo from
Restaurants are proving to be a bit more difficult these days. The problems which are arising are things I never noticed before and I know most restaurants, having worked at some myself, probably don’t notice are a problem either. I think the key to being more welcoming to people of all different abilities is having more knowledge of the challenges others have that we may not know about if we have not experienced it ourselves. So, here is a list of the challenges I have found recently:

1. Hosts, when you are taking people to their seat, please look behind you to see if the person you are seating can walk as fast as you can. Often the host is all the way across the restaurant waiting awkwardly for us to catch up with him or her.

2. Restaurants are much louder than I ever noticed them to be. We can barely talk now at the table because both Mom and Dad have a hard time hearing us. And when it is loud, Mom gets sensory overload and becomes confused, nervous, and overwhelmed. There is not much a restaurant can do about this, so we can just try to eat out at less busy hours.

3. Mugs with a hole in the handle the size of a quarter are impossible to use for people with weakness in their limbs or who have hand tremors.

4. Some restaurants only have booth seating, which is problematic for people with movement issues, like mom’s Parkinson’s. And looking into the future, I rarely see options for people with wheelchairs either. Having some table seating, and not tall tables with chairs you have to climb into, is a wonderful option. 

5. For the love of God (or that which you see as divine), please do not cover your booths in velvet. People who have a hard time moving can barely get into a booth as it is, using velvet on the seats makes it impossible to slide into the booth.


Rev. Katie

No comments:

Post a Comment