NEW YORK – On a hot weekend morning, the Lachhman-Persad family traveled to the Brooklyn Museum from the Bronx, browsing the Sunday market and enjoying each other’s company.
Visiting places across the city is something they’ve been actively trying to do more often, but it is not always easy for them.
“It really is isolating when you have a disability and want to get out and don’t know how to do it,” says Lakshmee Lachhman-Persad, a disability advocate.
Her younger sister, Annie, was born with cerebral palsy and is in a wheelchair. Lakshmee also lives with vertigo, which affects her hearing and deteriorated bones on the left side of her body.
The family, immigrants from Guyana, started a blog in 2018 called Accessible Travel NYC. With their platform, they aim to provide free tips and accessibility information for popular landmarks in New York.
“Natural History Museum, the Bronx Botanical Garden, one of our favorites, the Bronx Zoo,” said their mother Pearly Lachhman, listing some of their favorite destinations.
“And the Met,” Annie added.
For instance, the best place for a wheelchair user to enter the Met is on 5th Avenue and 81st Street, according to the blog.
“After working 20 years in the travel industry, I hadn’t realized that there were one in four people with a disability here in the United States and, as a travel marketer, I never ever once considered marketing to people with disabilities,” Lachhman-Persad said.
They hope their adventures will inspire others to enjoy the arts and culture this city has to offer, despite how difficult it can be to navigate with a disability.
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