“Tech Companies Still Fail to Design for Disability” – Haben Girma Describes an Encounter with a Sidewalk Robot and Advocates for Accessibility at the Forefront of Innovation

Haben Girma ('13), Disability Rights Advocate, author and speaker, contributed an article to TechCrunch discussing her encounter with a Starship no-contact delivery robot, the isolation of our current no-touch world, and why tech solutions for “everyone” must include disabled people (“The Robots Occupying Our Sidewalks,” Aug. 11). “During a pandemic disproportionately extinguishing disabled lives, the last thing we need is cities adopting tech that excludes blind people and endangers pedestrians with mobility disabilities. The ADA’s promise of equality depends on enforcement. … Cities and tech companies need to plan for accessibility early in the design process, include disabled people in solutions and review the many published accessibility guidelines. The next time Mylo [Haben’s guide dog] and I encounter a robot, it better jump, spin and run.”