Last night I went to a monthly social event for people living with HIV. My co-worker and I were asking people to fill out a community survey about accessing health information online. She was giving a presentation on the topic and I was asking people to fill out the survey at the same time. I ran into a situation many community organizers have before – The survey wasn’t accessible to everyone.
One man didn’t speak or read English and our written survey was only in English. I was able to orally give him the survey in Spanish, but his answers about personal health issues could have been different from not being able to fill it out privately like others. But what if someone had only spoken Haitian Creole, which I don’t? What if someone hadn’t been physically able to write? Or hadn’t learned how to read? How could we have assured that the survey be accessible to everyone?
I’m interested in your ideas – What do you think we could have done?