GREENBURGH, N.Y. – Angela Raso said she has had plenty of difficulty getting her motorized scooter and specially designed van around Greenburgh.
Narrow handicap parking spaces, stores without ramps and dangerous crosswalks have made things that many take for granted – stopping by the drug store or dropping off a letter at the post office –nearly impossible tasks for the Hartsdale woman.
“I can’t even dream of going to the post office without someone with me,” said Raso, who has been disabled since birth. “It can be frustrating.”
But now, with the help of Supervisor Paul Feiner, Raso will have a say on the shortcomings of the town’s handicap access as she leads the newly formed Greenburgh Disabled Advisory Committee.
“I want to get this project going for a more accessible Greenburg,” she said.
Born with a heart condition and other anomalies, Raso grew up in a wheelchair. But last year, at age 29, Raso decided to get her driver’s license, hoping a car would bring her some new-found freedom. Instead, it opened her eyes to a whole new set of problems.
“It was supposed to give me some freedom to get around but when I started going to some places, I found it was very difficult to actually complete what I went out to do,” Raso said.
Frustrated, Raso reached out to Feiner. On her suggestion, Feiner has agreed to create the disabled advisory committee – a group of volunteers, which Raso will chair, tasked with the responsibility of recommending improvements to Greenburgh’s problem areas for handicap access.
From storefront access to a bump in the sidewalk, Feiner said all suggestions are welcome from Raso and her committee.
“I have no doubt it will beneficial,” Feiner said Wednesday.
Less than 24 hours after receiving the word that she would lead Greenburgh’s newest committee, Raso was already brainstorming ideas, including wider parking spaces at several businesses throughout the town.
“I guess we’ll see where this takes us,” she said. “Hopefully it gets things going.”