Do It Myself Blog – Glenda Watson Hyatt

Motivational Speaker

Inaccessibility Strikes in Small, Personal Packages

Filed under: Living with a disability — by at 7:10 pm on Tuesday, September 28, 2010

This year I have ziplined across Robson Square, traveled across the continent to present, and toured around Washington DC all with barely any accessibility hiccups.

This morning, while getting dressed, an unexpected accessibility glitch struck that nearly did me in. For the life of me, I could not open the new plasticy wrapper on the Tampax tampons. The new wrapper does not tear like the old paper one, but rather has two flaps that, I guess, are meant to open when pulled in opposite directions. For someone with one quasi-functioning hand, this is not doable…this is definitely an accessibility issue, a usability issue!

Wrapped Tampax tampons on a counter

Finally, totally frustrated and cursing under my breath, I darted out to the kitchen for the scissors to carefully snip open the end, making sure not to cut the string, which would only lead to other accessibility issues I’m sure…

Cutting open the package is a solution that works at home, but will not work when I cannot pack scissors while traveling. Hopefully, tampons with cardboard applicators and paper wrappers can still be obtained, otherwise future travel plans may be off-limits one week per month.

A note to the guys: when sent out for Rocky Road ice cream and tampons, be sure to avoid the Tampax Pearl Plastic unless instructed otherwise. You’ll both be happier, trust me!

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Comment by Adelaide Dupont

September 28, 2010 @ 11:42 pm

It would be good to have a consumer review of accessible tampons and work-arounds.

Comment by Para Graphia

October 3, 2010 @ 4:46 pm

I think you and Adelaide have a good point! How very inconvenient and very inaccessible. Perhaps the people who design all these products could product test them in all conditions like with one hand with a mitten on for example! then maybe they will work for more people.

Comment by Maggie

October 4, 2010 @ 5:41 pm

It would be good to let Tampax Brand know about this. I’m sure their packaging engineers never gave accessibility a thought, but they should get this feedback.

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