CIRA Joins Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Program

Airport to offer sunflower lanyards beginning today

(Bloomington, IL)  Central Illinois Regional Airport (CIRA) now offers a customer service program designed to assist travelers and visitors with hidden disabilities while at the airport.  As part of the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Program, CIRA joins other U.S. and global airports in a universal sunflower lanyard initiative that provides a discreet method of identification to those with disabilities not easily recognizable.

The Hidden Disabilities Program allows a person to self-identify as someone with a hidden disability who may require additional assistance without revealing the nature of the disability.  By wearing the sunflower lanyard, trained airport staff will recognize the individual wearing the lanyard may need additional support, help, or more time during their travel experience.

Many travelers have disabilities that are not immediately visible but still present challenges in their daily lives.   Hidden disabilities can include but are not limited to autism, anxiety disorders, epilepsy, learning disabilities, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and many other impairments or chronic illnesses.

“We recognize that some of our travelers and guests have needs that are not readily visible.”, said Alan Sender, Chairman of the Bloomington Normal Airport Authority. “The Hidden Disabilities Sunflower program provides one more level of accessibility and convenience to all who choose to visit us at Central Illinois Regional Airport for air travel, car rental or other reasons.”

Simply, airline personnel can provide the lanyard to any passenger who asks for one. There is no prerequisite to receive a sunflower lanyard or identification necessary.  Passengers should still arrange assistance with their airlines if disability services are needed.  Participation in the program does not preclude the security checkpoint process or any airline requirements.  It is simply a silent signal to everyone interacting with the participating individual to offer support, more time and assistance as needed.

For more information about the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower lanyard program, including a list of participating airports please visit https://hiddendisabilitiesstore.com/us/for-you/airports-around-the-world.html.  The details of the CIRA program can be found on the airport’s website – www.cira.com/at-the-airport/accessibility.  ###

For more information contact Fran Strebing at 309-663-7384, fran@cira.com.

  • Central Illinois Regional Airport
  • 3201 CIRA Drive, Bloomington, IL, 61704
  • +1 (309) 663-7383
  • Airport Code: BMI

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