If you live in the City of the Angels, and you rely on a wheelchair to get from place to place, then you might want to get your hands on a camera. Steve Lopez, a man who writes a column for the Los Angeles Times has agreed to publish any photographs of sidewalks that are in need of repair. He made his offer after meeting with a woman named Deborah Murphy.
Ms. Murphy is the executive director of Los Angeles Walks and the chair of the L.A. Pedestrian Advocacy Committee. The men and women at City Hall have forced her to take-on a special mission. She is seeking to make changes in the plans that are now underway for a $3-billion street and repair measure.
As currently written, that measure states that the allotted money will be used only for repairing streets. Not a single cent has been set-aside for fixing the sidewalks. Yet there is no shortage of bad sidewalks in Los Angeles.
Now L.A. may be called the City of the Angels, but that does not mean that all of its residents can use wings to get around in that urbanized area. In fact, Ms. Murphy has stated that at some point every resident of Los Angeles, even those with the most expensive cars, becomes a pedestrian, if only for a brief period of time.
If you have been on a bus in the city that is associated with Hollywood stars, then you know that the bus drivers go out-of –their way to accommodate any wheelchair-bound riders. Still, their willingness to be so caring will prove of little value, if those who are rolling on wheels cannot maneuver across the pavements, in order to get to a bus stop. That is why the advocacy effort launched by Deborah Murphy and now backed-up by Steve Lopez is so very important. Their efforts have a greater chance for causing the desired change, if each wheelchair user in Los Angles can get hold of a camera and then use it to snap a shot of a damaged sidewalk.
*Image courtesy Flickr creative commons.