New Emoji For Disabled People Could Finally Be On Their Way

Apple has written to Unicode, the people who create emojis, requesting a new range of icons to represent people living differently abled lives.
The tech giant has proposed a total of 13 new emojis including people using canes and wheelchairs, an emoji for deaf people, a prosthetic arm and leg, a guide dog, and a hearing aid. The proposed range would expand to 43 different options when different skin tones are taken into account.
Photo: Emojipedia
Apple writes in its proposal to Unicode: "One in seven people around the world has some form of disability, whether that be a physical disability involving vision, hearing, or loss of physical motor skills, or a more hidden, invisible disability. The current selection of emoji provides a wide array of representations of people, activities, and objects meaningful to the general public, but very few speak to the life experiences of those with disabilities."
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The company adds: "This new set of emoji that we are proposing aims to provide a wider array of options to represent basic categories for people with disabilities. This is not meant to be a comprehensive list of all possible depictions of disabilities, but to provide an initial starting point for greater representation for diversity within the emoji universe."
On Twitter, people have welcomed the proposed new range of emoji, which would probably arrive by early 2019 if they are approved by Unicode. Check out a selection of reactions below.
As Apple acknowledges, the proposed new emojis don't represent anything close to the range of differently abled lives that people are living in 2018. But they're definitely a move in the right direction towards a more inclusive emoji future.
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