Disabilities: The Avenue To Solutions

9:55am Thursday 14 November

What would you classify as your most innovative solution to a problem, or issue? And, was the solution that you came up with transferable to other challenging situations? When a person lives in a world that is working towards being 100% accessible, what thoughts come to your mind?

We are all different, and the way in which we approach difficult situations also varies. And yet, we don’t tend to utilise that diversity to its full potential. People with disabilities are faced by hundreds of problems everyday, and they are always actively coming up for solutions that help them, but also benefit others.

The potential to enhance our collective problem solving skills lies with people with disabilities.

Santiago Velasquez

Founder and CEO, EyeSyght and Hailos

Santiago Velasquez

Santiago Velasquez is the founder of both EyeSyght and Hailo, budding tech companies with a focus on solving many of the biggest accessibility issues in the modern world.

Santiago is the first visually impaired person to attempt an electrical engineering degree in the southern hemisphere and has been involved in challenges, hackathons, and boot-camps run by Griffith University, Google and The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, on topics ranging from innovation, accessibility, entrepreneurship, and robotics.

Santiago was a speaker at TEDxQUT in 2018, where he spoke about the challenge of breaking down the barriers that exist for vision-impaired individuals.

This year Santiago was nominated to be part of the Australian delegation to the United Nations. As a delegate, Santiago made two interventions at the 12th Session of the Conference of States Parties of Rights of Persons with Disabilities. These focused on universal design and the participation of persons with disabilities in the STEM fields, along with the rights of migrants with disabilities.