Paralympics to award accessible medals

The upcoming Rio Paralympics are set to begin in less than three weeks, and will include an exciting new feature. The Rio 2016 Organizing Committee has unveiled specially designed accessible medals. The medals were created with athletes with visual impairments in mind in particular. When shaken, each type of medal will make a specific sound. The system works due to tiny steel balls inside the medals – gold medals have the most balls and will make the loudest sound; while bronze medals have the least and will make the lowest sound. This allows individuals with visual impairments to identify the colors of the medals. In addition, “Rio 2016 Paralympic Games” is engraved on each medal in braille.

The Brazilian Paralympic Committee seems excited to host the Paralympics. “Brazil is preparing for its best Paralympic Games performance and I hope that many of these medals stay in the country,” stated Committee President Andrew Parsons.

Emily Pate is a third-year student at Seattle University interested in Strategic Communications, learning Spanish, and working with non-profits. Her work for Rooted In Rights is focused on discussing current events in the community of people with disabilities. Her experience previous to Rooted In Rights includes writing broadcasts for KBOO radio in Portland, OR, and managing a neighborhood blog in the Seattle community. In addition to work, Emily enjoys drawing, spending time with her friends and family, and backpacking.