The 2019 Parapan American Games are the latest example of how Para sports act as agents of change to break social barriers, as the Organising Committee and The Office of Public Defender of Peru signed an agreement to promote accessibility across the country.
Lima 2019 President Carlos Neuhaus and Peruvian Ombudsman Walter Gutierrez agreed to stage joint capacity-building activities to help raise awareness on the rights for people with disabilities in Peru.
They signed the agreement at a ceremony held at the VIDENA Sports Complex before taking a tour across several of the competition venues that will hold the Parapans between 23 August and 1 September to verify its accessibility.
Neuhaus said: “Venues like the VIDENA have big elevators and all the facilities needed so that Para athletes can access them. During the Games, they will arrive at the venues with equipped cars and through ramps at the entrances.
“Para athletes will not have issues to move around the VIDENA and the other venues.”
Gutierrez added: “We signed this agreement to raise awareness of an issue that is fundamental for the citizen: accessibility. Three million people have some type of impairment and we want to guarantee their rights.
“The Games are an opportunity to have standard infrastructure that complies with the norms. We want society to know about accessibility because it is a right. It is discrimination if you do not comply with that.”
Apart from accessible infrastructure and transportation, they are working on accessible technology, audio systems, websites and mobile applications.
Lima 2019 will feature over 1,800 athletes competing across 17 sports, overtaking Toronto 2015 as the biggest Parapan American Games in history.
Tickets can be purchased online.