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Disability in Madrid: Recommendations

Several patterns become clear after examining data provided by the Ayuntamiento de Madrid, Metro Madrid and Renfe.  These patterns suggest fixes that can improve the efficiency of service delivery for people with disabilities and improve their quality of life.

There are 0 public hospitals in Puente de Vallecas, and 0 special students enrolled in technical education programs.

Given the high population of people with disabilities in Puente de Vallecas, an increase in the number of services and opportunities could to be done. The zero level of special education students enrolled in technical programs is problematic and should be addressed by better identifying students with special needs and funneling them into technical education programs so they can become more self-sufficient and develop necessary job skills.  The district needs accessibility improved to its health facilities and could use a hospital with a specialization in serving people with physical and intellectual disabilities.

Hortaleza has 5 facilities for people with intellectual disabilities, but ranks 10th for total population of people with intellectual disabilities.

Consideration should be given to moving some of the facilities for people with intellectuals in Hortaleza to other districts.  This is because other districts have much higher populations of people with intellectual disabilities, and have fewer health and social services specifically catering to their needs.


8 districts have only 1 accessible street public toilets.  This includes Latina, which has the third largest population with disabilities in Madrid.


Polideportivos in Madrid do not offer any programming for team disability sports, despite offering this on the non-disability side.  There is no wheelchair basketball, wheelchair rugby, wheelchair ruby league, goalball, sitting volleyball, standing volleyball,  id basketball, blind football, cp football, id football,  deaf futsal, deaf basketball, deaf volleyball, wheelchair curling or sledge hockey.

The total number of accessible street level public toilets needs to be increased to at least one per district. The inability to find accessible toilets can be a major hindrance to some people with disabilities from easily leaving their homes.  They have to plan around the location of toilets.  Given the large number of people with disabilities in Latina, two or more accessible public toilets should be built in areas where people are more likely to socialize and use other services in the area.

One of the most important aspects of sports is the ability to encourage integration and socialization.  This is particularly true of team sports. In areas with greater concentrations of people with specific types of disabilities. In districts such as Puente de Vallecas, Carabanchel, Centro or User for people with physical disabilities, consideration should be given to adding programming for wheelchair basketball, sitting volleyball or wheelchair rugby. For Puente de Vallecas, Centro, Carabanachel and Tetuán with high total or percentages of populations with intellectual disabilities, programming should be considered for id basketball, id volleyball or id futsal. For Puente de Vallecas, Latina, Carabanachel, Moratalaz with higher populations of people with sensory disabilities, blind football, deaf futsal and goalball should all be considered.  This should be done with support of the regional sport federations for these disabilities, but independent so people do not need to make the same level of commitment and can just participate casually without the need to pay membership and registration fees that can be a barrier to participation.

Accessibility at public schools should be reexamined.  Additional education related accessibility data needs to be shared.  The lack of data makes it difficult to assess the status of accessibility in public education.  This results in the possibility that children and young adults with disabilities may face additional challenges that hinder their educational opportunities.

Laura Hale
About Laura Hale (2569 Articles)
Laura Hale is a sport journalist, specializing in Paralympic and disability sport news. Prior to helping found ParaSport-News, she spent two and a half years working as a journalist on Wikinews, a citizen journalism site. As a journalist, she has covered the 2012 Summer Paralympics in London, the 2013 IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships in La Molina, the 2014 Winter Paralympics in Sochi, and a number of other sporting events. She has additional experience with Paralympic sport having worked as a Wikipedian in Residence for the Australian and Spanish Paralympic Committees. She has a PhD in Communications from the University of Canberra.

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