Museum of Surrey, Surrey Fire Service announce sensory-friendly initiatives

Museum to hold sensory-friendly hours, firefighters to be equipped with sensory kits

The Museum of Surrey is becoming more accessible to local residents with the launch of a new sensory-friendly initiative, announced Tuesday (Aug. 13).

In partnership with the Canucks Autism Network (CAN), the museum will run sensory-friendly hours from 10 a.m. to noon on the first Sunday of each month, beginning in September.

The Sunday mornings will offer guests an opportunity to tour the museum with reduced lighting and sound. Guests can borrow complimentary noise-cancelling headphones — which are available from the front desk at any time, not just during the sensory-friendly hours — and can access the permanent, sensory-friendly space on the museum’s second floor.

“The City of Surrey is committed to providing accessible and inclusive programs and services for all members of our community,” said Coun. Allison Patton. “Today’s announcement ensures everyone can experience the magic of our museum.”

“We’re very dedicated to keep building these spaces,” said Patton.

Museum manager Lynn Saffery said he was thrilled to officially launch the sensory-friendly hours.

“The Museum of Surrey is your museum. It’s a people museum that is inclusive, accessible and cares deeply about the communities and connections within the City of Surrey,” he said.

“We tell the stories of Surrey, and that means that all people need to be represented, not just our visitors but within our programs, events, galleries and exhibits.”

A second city-wide initiative was also announced during the Tuesday morning event.

Ben Wilson, Prevention Captain with Surrey Fire Service, was on hand to talk about new training and resources that will be made available to Surrey first responders.

As a parent of a child with autism, the initiative is “near and dear” to Wilson’s heart, he said.

Through an ongoing partnership between CAN, the City of Surrey, Surrey Fire Service and the Surrey Fire Fighters’ Charitable Society, firefighters will now receive autism awareness training, and sensory-friendly kits will be provided to all front-line rigs “to aid anyone with sensory processing needs during first responder or fire calls.”

Those kits will include noise-cancelling headphones, symbol cards and calming accessories to assist anyone who may become overwhelmed during an incident.

As CAN noted in a media release, individuals with autism are “seven times more likely to interact with first responders than other members of the public.”

“As first responders, communication and trust with our patients is key to keeping them safe,” said Wilson. “When an accident or fire occurs, it can be overwhelming for everyone involved, particularly for those with autism or sensory processing disorders. We are very proud to launch this innovative program, which will ensure better service to all members of our community.”

Additionally, a newly established Surrey Fire Fighters’ Charitable Society autism committee will work to promote educational training among first responders, as well as support fire service members whose families are living with autism.



editor@cloverdalereporter.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Cloverdale town hall adresses climate change and loss of biodiversity

Meeting co-hosted by Cloverdale-Langley City MP John Aldag, Camp We Empower draws about 70 people

PHOTOS: Surrey designer uses toilet paper to make a dress for annual Toronto show

‘The dress is very experimental and avante garde,’ says Guildford-based Alex S. Yu

Police issue warning after four overdoses in North Delta

Police and emergency health services use naloxone to revive four overdose victims Thursday morning

New police force in Surrey must avoid VPD, RCMP errors made in Pickton case: Oppal

Boots are scheduled to be on the ground by spring 2021

Surrey reacts to policing plan getting the green light

Former mayor, councillors and residents weigh in on the Public Safety Minister approving the transition

Trudeau vows to stand firm against ‘increasingly assertive’ China

China has accused Canada of meddling in its affairs

Conan turns to the Property Brothers for tips on buying Greenland

Jonathan Scott suggests removing glaciers and mountains to bring in ‘more natural light’

Forests minister visits B.C. town rocked by multiple mill shutdowns

A third of Mackenzie turns out for rally, not much to cheer about

B.C. sockeye returns drop as official calls 2019 ‘extremely challenging’

Federal government says officials are seeing the same thing off Alaska and Washington state

North Van music teacher accused of sexual misconduct involving girls

Police believe other victims could be out there after the arrest of Lamar Victor Alviar

B.C. family stranded in Croatia desperate to come home

Funds being raised to bring back mom and two children

B.C. man on trial for daughters’ murders says an intruder broke in

Andrew Berry takes stand in his defense for December 2017 deaths of young daughters

‘Plenty of time for a deal’: Teachers’ union expects kids back in school on Sept. 3

BCTF says class size, composition at the heart of the issue

Most Read