December 22, 2014
Meet one of our new profiles, Anjan Manikumar. Anjan is the President and Founder of Signs Restaurant. For those who have never heard of it, their mission is to promote the use of American Sign Language amongst the hearing community and provide employment opportunities in the deaf community. It’s the first restaurant in Canada to employ deaf servers, so patrons have the opportunity to communicate their order through ASL. Anjan’s commitment to full inclusion is honorable and moving, especially given that he’s not deaf or hard of hearing himself.
Signs Restaurant has been receiving a lot of press lately over the instalment of a wheelchair ramp. The City of Toronto ordered them to remove it about a month ago as it encroached onto the sidewalk imposing a safety risk. (Ironically, they received an award for Best Small Employer of the Year a week later).
Anjan insisted that his restaurant would stay accessible. He kept the ramp up regardless of the looming fine…. And his persistence seems to be working. The mailboxes that used to sit just outside the restaurant entrance have been moved down the block, giving more space for everyone. We hope this change will be enough to keep Signs fully accessible!