San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

ICE Works to Become More Disability-Friendly

THE Costa Rican Electricity andTelecom Institute (ICE) says it is becomingincreasingly more supportive of peoplewith disabilities.ICE is in the process of installinghandicap-accessible public phones aroundthe country. The state telecommunicationsmonopoly also offers a telephone servicein which a hearing or speech-impairedperson types a message into a speciallyequipped phone. The message is read byan operator and relayed to the recipient atthe other end of the line, and the operatortypes the response back to the caller.Sixty phones equipped with screensand keyboards have been installed, andICE says it is in the process of buyingapproximately 60 more.ICE said that its calling cards are alsoavailable with Braille identification numbers,and clients can request billing inBraille.In addition, special electricity ratesare available for nursing homes, homesfor the disabled, state orphanages andeconomically disadvantaged clients whorely on artificial respirators or supplementaloxygen, the statement said.“In this way ICE sponsors a greaterparticipation for people with disabilities,assuming responsibility to bring developmentand well-being to the entire population,”the company said in a statement.

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