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Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Program Improves Accessibility for All Passengers at Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport

by Kimberly Inlander

May 29, 2023

© Neil Juggins

Destinations / North America

Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport recently partnered with Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Program, a tool for passengers to voluntarily share a disability or condition not immediately apparent, like autism, PTSD and more. The Sunflower-branded product will make transit through ECP easier for family travelers.


The program should be fully implemented this summer, allowing passengers with hidden disabilities to request a free Sunflower lanyard, pin, button or other identifier to display during their time at the airport.


“Here at ECP, we strive to make all passengers feel comfortable and confident,” said Parker W. McClellan Jr., A.A.E., executive director, ECP. “By partnering with the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Program, we are enhancing accessibility for all passengers. Our staff will soon be trained to easily spot passengers wearing the Sunflower and provide them with additional support.”

© Neil Juggins

There is no qualifying list of hidden disabilities, with ECP encouraging any passengers who feel they would benefit from the product to wear them. When the program is fully established, passengers can also coordinate with airlines and/or TSA Cares for accommodation arrangements.


The Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Program first debuted at Gatwick International Airport in 2016 and has since expanded to about 80 global airports.


“We are delighted that ECP is joining the global Hidden Disabilities Sunflower network,” said Paul White, CEO, Hidden Disabilities Sunflower. “By introducing the Sunflower throughout the airport, ECP is complementing their accessibility to support passengers with non-visible disabilities. Sunflower wearers travel for many reasons, and the knowledge that they will receive support when needed increases their confidence to travel.”


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