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YVR recipient of Dementia-Friendly Communities Award

Vancouver International Airport (YVR) is honoured to be selected as a Dementia-Friendly Large Organization by Dementia-Friendly Canada.

Everyone deserves to feel like they belong and are welcome at YVR. That’s why the airport has prioritized improving accessibility across the entire passenger journey.

The airport experience can be a challenging one for those living with dementia, their families, and their care partners. Accessibility is one of YVR’s top priorities, and we are committed to providing an inclusive experience which meets the needs of the community.

Over Summer 2022, YVR participated in a journey mapping exercise in partnership with Leger Research. Through this exercise, YVR had the opportunity to gain meaningful insights from passengers’ first-hand experiences to better understand strengths and areas for improvement related to accessibility across the airport.

YVR has previously partnered with the Alzheimer’s Society of BC to provide Dementia-Friendly training and workshops that help Green Coat volunteers recognize and support passengers living with dementia, including communication strategies. YVR looks forward to continuing this partnership with more ongoing training.

In addition, YVR participates in the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower program. The sunflower symbol helps signal to YVR staff, including airlines, security, and the front-line team, that the traveller has a non-visible disability (such as dementia) and may need extra care and support. Sunflower lanyards or stickers are available for pick-up at airport information counters.

The airport has also partnered with the University of Ottawa’s working group on Air Travel Experiences of Passengers Living with Cognitive Impairment or Dementia to find opportunities to share knowledge, policy, care, and services.

These are just a few examples of the variety of programs the airport has implemented to support those living with disabilities. YVR is thankful to be recognized as a Dementia-Friendly Large Organization, however, none of this important work would be possible without the enthusiasm demonstrated by the YVR community.

Creating accessible and inclusive spaces improves the overall experience for all airport customers. YVR is looking forward to continued engagement with  its working groups and airport community to foster a welcoming experience for all in 2023 and beyond.

To learn more about accessibility at YVR, please visit: https://www.yvr.ca/en/passengers/navigate-yvr/accessibility-at-yvr

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