• Norfolk, Virginia, U.S.A.

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Regarding your Oct. 23 editorial, “Toward a barrier-free Japan,” transportation is a critical element in promoting the independence of individuals with disabilities. But this is one component.

Individuals with disabilities need greater educational, employment and housing opportunities. True integration is inclusive in all aspects of the society. Segregation and discrimination have costs.

Physical barriers should not prevent individuals from being a full participant in society. As the society ages, those elements that have been constructed and adopted for individuals with disabilities will be greatly appreciated by the aging population and the society as a whole will benefit. One should not look at accommodations as specifically for individuals with disabilities but rather as a design process that is universal and includes all people throughout their lives.

The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.

richard dipeppe

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