White Cane Safety Day celebrates independence

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Covington Police Chief Rob Nader, second from right, and others with the department get a small taste of what it’s like to be blind while crossing Madison Avenue blindfolded as part of “White Cane Safety Day.”

COVINGTON, Ky. - What’s it like to cross the street when you’re blind?

Some of Covington’s top police administrators and others found out today during the annual “White Cane Safety Day.”
 
The Covington Police Department is a partner in the event, which is sponsored by the Northern Kentucky Council of the Blind and held in front of the Covington Police headquarters building at 20th and Madison.
 
The event is part of a national observance designed to build awareness of the challenges faced by those who are blind or visually impaired, to recognize the rights of that community, and to celebrate the white cane as a symbol and tool of independence.
 
Police and others let themselves be blindfolded, picked up canes, and maneuvered across Madison Avenue.


 
A visually impaired woman demonstrates how to pour water without spilling it with the help of a “Say When” indicator.

Also at the event, a variety of demonstrations showed how people who are visually impaired do everyday activities like walking across the street with a Seeing Eye (guide) dog, pouring a glass of water, and using an app to both read text that is not in Braille and to identify the denomination of money in bill form.
 
Covington Mayor Joe Meyer read a proclamation designating “White Cane Safety Day” in the City. Among its words:
 
“The White Cane enables the blind and visually impaired to go, to move, to be, and to compete with all others in society. With the growing use of the white cane is an added element - the wish and the will to be free - the unquenchable spirit and the inextinguishable determination to be independent. With these, lives are changed, and the prospects for blind people become bright.”


 Another demonstration involved using a Seeing Eye (guide) dog.


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