Mission has become the first City in British Columbia to loan EnChroma® glasses for colour blindness to visitors and residents. Those who are red-green colour blind can borrow EnChroma glasses from the Mission Visitor Centre free of charge for the day; to experience the colours of nature, artwork, and outdoor activities in and around the community, enhancing their overall experience.
Mission is a popular destination offering a host of colourful events from the Fraser Valley Children’s Festival, where the loan program was launched, to flower festivals and light displays throughout the year. Both indoor and outdoor glasses are available, with the Visitor Centre staff on hand to help you pick the right pair.
“We commend the City of Mission for enabling visitors to access the myriad of colours nature displays to colour blind guests,” said Erik Ritchie, CEO of EnChroma. “Our glasses and scenic viewers have proven they encourage more people to bring a colour blind friend or loved one to a destination to share a more inclusive experience.”
One in 12 men (8%) and one in 200 women (.5%) are Colour Vision Deficient (CVD); an estimated 1.6 million in Canada, which equates to approximately 1,750 residents in Mission. One Mission local Garrett Trueman participated in the launch and said “I am speechless, this makes me so happy as I can now teach my son his colours. This is truly a life-changing experience.”
J. Lee commented, "Now I understand why emergency services use red - I had no idea it stood out this much." Steve Robson from Mission advised " I am overwhelmed, it gave me goosebumps." and Clayton Smith commented, " This is amazing and life-changing for me."
“We are thrilled to be able to make the glasses available through a free-loan program, and accessible to those coming to Mission and the Fraser Valley,” said Clare Seeley, Manager of Tourism for the City of Mission. “We have been working hard to begin to address accessibility needs across the spectrum and so far, have added accessible doors, a hearing loop, and now colour-blind glasses to our inventory, thanks to Federal Funding.”
If you are interested in borrowing the glasses, bring a copy of your driver's license or valid picture ID to the Visitor Centre to use the loan program. The Visitor Centre is located at 34033 Lougheed Highway, Mission.
- While people with normal colour vision see over one million shades of colour, the colour blind only see an estimated 10% of hues and shades. As a result, colours can appear dull and difficult to differentiate; red appears brown; green looks gray or tan; purple looks blue; and pink appears gray. This creates confusion and frustration for colour blind people and detracts from their ability to fully experience colours in art, nature, sports, and travel.
- Over three-fourths of colour-blind people feel "left out" or disappointed in trips to art museums, gardens, and parks because they cannot fully experience colours.
- Roughly three of four (71.88%) find it challenging to understand maps, brochures, signage, and exhibits that convey information via colours at museums, parks, tourist destinations and concerts.
- More than half of colour-blind people think museums, parks, gardens, tourist destinations, concert and sports venues should treat colour blindness as an accessibility issue (54.06%)
- Eighty-five percent of colour-blind people say they would be more likely to visit a museum, garden, park, or tourist destination if they knew they could borrow EnChroma glasses to more fully experience the colors during their visit (85.35%)
- This was made possible thanks to Federal Funding through Employment and Social Development Canada.