Life beyond height: Little people’s struggle to access public buildings (includes documentary)

This mini-documentary explores the lives of three women who all have something in common: dwarfism. It begins with Kristen DeAndrade. Kristen was born with achondroplasia, the most common form of dwarfism. She underwent limb lengthening surgery as a child and now lives a fairly independent life as an adult.

She is now a devoted advocate dedicated to eliminating stereotypes about dwarfism. We then meet Ally O’Neill. Ally is a 4th-grade teacher and also has achondroplasia. She shares her experience about living in a world that isn’t accommodating for people like her. Our last character is Wildine Aumoithe. Wildine is a content creator and college student who has SADDAN dysplasia. She explains why she had to transition to online classes due to her college not accommodating her needs.

We also introduce three experts: Dr. David Feldman, an orthopedic surgeon at the Paley Institute, Martha Wong, the Associate Director of the Disability Resource Center at Florida International University, and architect, Asghar Fathi. Through their explanations, we understand what dwarfism is, what schools are doing to better accommodate students with dwarfism, and what architects can do to design buildings that are accommodating towards people with certain disabilities.

To listen to a podcast about this topic click here.

To see a photo essay about this topic click here.

Laura Palfrey is pursuing her Bachelor’s degree in Digital TV and Multimedia Production. With a passion for storytelling and visual media, she aspires to work in television as a news producer upon graduation. Her hobbies include photography and traveling.

Jasmine Arocha is a student at Florida International University majoring in Digital TV and Multimedia Production. She was born and raised in Miami and has a creative eye for producing and editing videos. In the future, she hopes to work behind the scenes for the news.

Sheetal Bahadursingh is a Digital Communication and Media student at FIU. She was born and raised in South Florida and has achondroplasia, a form of dwarfism. She has a passion for photography and enjoys editing video footage from her travels, crafting them into captivating travel documentaries. She has a creative eye for producing and editing videos and aspires to work behind the scenes in the news industry.