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As the head of Airbnb’s push for accessibility and inclusion, Srin Madipalli is overseeing the $35 billion peer-to-peer rental giant’s efforts to make travel more accessible. With rentals in almost 200 countries and over 150 million users, the company could be a game changer. But is that what it wants? Ian Ruder profiles Madipalli and reports on his “once in a lifetime” opportunity to change the global conversations on disability and access.
Twenty-three a day — that’s the average number of wheelchairs lost or damaged by major airlines in the first three months that data has been available. Thanks to accessibility reforms in last year’s FAA budget, airlines are required to report mishandling of mobility devices, and disabled travelers now have some valuable information when choosing which airline to fly.
Once the realm of sweat-pant jeans and oversized rain ponchos, adaptive clothing has come a long way in recent years. To showcase adaptive lines that are functional and stylish, online retail giant Zappos teamed up with the Runway of Dreams Foundation to host a fashion show featuring everything from major brands like Tommy Hilfiger to smaller producers and fashion elites. “Disability doesn’t change how you want to present yourself to the world,” says Mindy Scheier, founder of the Runway of Dreams Foundation. “It’s time for brands and designers to embrace people with disabilities as an important part of our culture.”
One of the simplest ways to improve your diet and overall health is to reduce sugar consumption. While that might seem easier said than done, our nutrition guru gives some tips on how to cut down without feeling deprived: switch from processed to natural sugars, keep an eye out for “hidden” sugars, and replace artificial sweeteners with healthy, low-calorie options.
In our “Ask Us” column, our resident pros share their best answers to readers’ questions. This month, Mike Collins gives advice to a reader wondering how wheelers get their chairs into all those fancy collector cars we showcased last year, while Ian Ruder gives a pro tip on the best shower/commode chairs suitable for airline travel. Have a question you’d like answered? Please submit it at unitedspinal.org/ask-us or call 800/962-9629 (choose Option 1).