Today’s Solutions: December 05, 2021

In Arras, France, a city council member is making history as the city’s public official in charge of inclusion and happiness. Éléonore Laloux is the first and only person with Down syndrome to be elected to public office in the country.

Laloux was recently awarded membership in the National Order of Merit for her efforts to bring inclusion and accessibility to all aspects of government. She draws on her personal lived experience to implement innovative projects including a virtual tour of a local belfry, verbal instructions at crosswalks, and more visible street signs.

“For me, people with disabilities, visible or invisible, are full members of society and have the right to have the same access as everyone else,” said Laloux.

In addition to heading into her second term on the city council, Laloux also works as a spokesperson for Les Amis d’Eléonore, an organization that works with parents of children with Down syndrome, and is a board member for Down Up, a nonprofit which advocates for recognition for those with intellectual disabilities.

Fellow city council members report that Laloux has brought a much-needed freshness and new perspective to local government initiatives. In the case of the belfry tour, Laloux’s unique perspective allowed her to identify how the inaccessible stairs of the building could prevent some visitors from fully enjoying it.

Moving forwards, she is working on implementing the city’s first dog park and implementing “nudges,” a Dutch concept in which citizens are encouraged to engage in fun ways to take care of their city─like putting a basketball hoop above a public trash can.

Image source: The Times

Solutions News Source Print this article
More of Today's Solutions

Rwanda’s mountain gorillas represent a successful conservation story

Following years of poaching and habitat destruction, the population of mountain gorillas in Rwanda once numbered under 260 individuals. Now, Rwandan gorillas represent a rare conservation success and a key economic engine for the East ... Read More

Germany plans to put 15 million electric vehicles on its roads by 2030

Making electric cars the dominant vehicles on the road is key to curbing planet-warming emissions and protecting the climate. In a bid to reach that goal, an increasing number of countries and cities across the ... Read More

Here are 5 Indigenous-led eco-charities you can support today

The climate crisis has caused us to reconsider our consumerist lifestyles and turn to Indigenous peoples to learn from their superior understanding of living in harmony with nature. Here is a list of five organizations ... Read More

Scientists discover a peculiar new planet

Deep into the Hercules constellation, 855 light-years away from Earth, lies a record breaking exoplanet. This newly discovered gas giant was named TOI-2109b, and the thing that makes it so special is the fact it ... Read More

High altitude experiment shows that snow monkeys are excellent at fishing

Snow monkeys, also known as the Japanese macaque, are native to many of the main islands of Japan. These fluffy creatures are the most northern-based non-human primate out there, meaning they have some cold temperatures ... Read More