Tag Archives: RNIB

Best Practice Leisure Guidelines

RNIB BBS & Metro Blind Sport's Best Practice Leisure Guidelines

Best Practice Covid-19 Leisure Guidelines from RNIB, BBS and Metro Blind Sport

Covid-19: Supporting your blind and partially sighted members and participants. With a little support blind and partially sighted people can stay safe whilst being active.

 

1. Visual indicators and awareness

Be aware of who could be blind and partially sighted

It’s important to remember that blind and partially sighted people don’t necessarily “look blind”. Not all blind and partially sighted people wear dark glasses, have a cane or a guide dog, so be mindful that it may not always be obvious.

If you think that someone might require assistance or they have a visual indicator (which includes wearing the sunflower lanyard), a simple introduction and “Is there anything I can assist you with?”, can go a long way.

Staff Introduce yourself as customers may not see your uniform/name tag – “Hi I’m Steve, I’m your Duty Manager, is there anything I can do to help today?”.

Social distancing Research carried out by RNIB found that almost two-thirds of blind or partially sighted people say they’ve found maintaining a social distance difficult – guide dogs are amazing animals, but they are unaware that social distancing is in force.
Potential announcements such as: “Please maintain your social distance and consider others around you.” could help to support all your members.

For more information on the challenges of social distancing, please refer to RNIB’s short video:

‘How to socially distance when this is your view’

 

2. Inside the facility and customer experience Guiding

We know that sticking to government guidelines and social distancing is very important at this time, but RNIB research shows that 48% of blind or partially sighted people were concerned or anxious about following social distancing guidance correctly. Guiding someone who is blind or partially sighted around your facilities in the “traditional way” is not currently an option.

Therefore, if someone requires guiding and there is not a safe and comfortable way in which social distancing measures can be adhered to, especially in the context of active participation or whilst using equipment, verbal guidance may need to be considered.

3. Colour contrast

Be mindful of the visual appearance of any temporary signage, ensuring there is clear colour contrast – otherwise blind and partially sighted customers may not be able to read them. Also, try to add this same logic to any online content you create.

4. Tactile markers and audio announcements

We support the use of safe tactile indicators or markers and audible announcements to provide your members with information in non-visual formats. For example, using tactile floor markers to identify one-way systems in changing rooms.

5. Flexibility for guides

We understand that facilities will request that people workout by themselves or socially distance while participating in different activities. We hope that you’ll consider relaxing these provisions for people who are blind or partially sighted and allow them to participate with their own guide or carer.

6. Hygiene

For many blind and partially sighted members, identifying equipment can be a difficult and extremely tactile process. To maintain the required level of hygiene, specifically highlight to your blind and partially sighted members where and how they can sterilise their hands, equipment and any other facilities they may use.

Help people find facilities

 Covid 19 may have resulted in changes to facility layouts – this can be confusing if you can’t see too well. If someone looks lost – ask them and let them know where things are.

 

7. Protective screens

With the installation of protective screens within your facilities, it’s important to ensure there is good contrast, so they don’t create unnecessary confusion. This can be as simple as putting tape around the edge of the screen and payment terminal location.

 

8. Ask someone if they need help 

People appreciate being asked if they need help. If you think that someone needs help, just say hello and ask

 

 How to Interact

For more information on how to interact with your blind and partially sighted customers, please refer to RNIB’s “Helping you to help your customers” resource

https://www.rnib.org.uk/volunteering/helping-you-help-others-during-coronavirus

While there is much more to be learned by booking a practical training session with an RNIB expert, here are a few simple tools which could make the world of difference, and help you stand out from the crowd:

  • Introduce yourself and talk directly to the person you are helping
  • If you are going to guide them, let them take your arm, don’t grab theirs
  • Don’t walk away without saying you are leaving
  • Treat people with disabilities with respect and consideration
  • Be open to different communication styles
  • Don’t make assumptions about what type of disability, or disabilities, a person has
  • Remember, some disabilities are not visible. Take the time to get to know your customers’ needs
  • Ask before you offer to help — don’t just jump in. Customers with disabilities know if they need help and how you can provide it

To find out how RNIB Business could help you to better support your customers and employees who are living with sight loss, please contact our team at businesslink@rnib.org.uk or call 01733 375 370.

 

RNIB: Talk and Support service!

RNIB: Talk and Support service! Call Helpline: 0303 123 9999

Talk and support service

RNIB understands that it can be lonely and isolating for some people living with a visual impairment. Through our national Talk & Support service we connect people together for regular, friendly conversation and peer support.

Our service is free and we offer a variety of options for people to connect with others both over the phone and online.

We urge anyone in our community who needs us to call our Helpline on 0303 123 9999 or email helpline@rnib.org.uk.

You can join a group of people with similar shared interests on a weekly basis via a voice call.  Our groups enable people to come together to meet new people, socialise and share tips in a safe space.

The groups run weekly on the same day and time, for 55 minutes for a period of 6-12 weeks with a trained facilitator present during the call.

In the last session, our facilitator will discuss with the group how you can remain connected if people are keen to do so. The idea being that friendships can continue after the 6-12 weeks.

During these challenging times, information is vital. In response, we are ramping up our support and services to ensure blind and partially sighted people get the help they need.

Call our Helpline on 0303 123 9999 or email helpline@rnib.org.uk.

Help us continue removing barriers that stop people with sight loss from living the lives they want to lead – visit https://www.rnib.org.uk to donate today.

 

 

Coronavirus (Covid 19)  – How RNIB Services Can Help You!

Coronavirus: How can RNIB Services Help You

Coronavirus (Covid 19)  – How RNIB Services Can Help You!

RNIB’s services are needed more than ever in these uncertain times. Our teams are working hard and we aim to increase our support for blind and partially sighted people over the coming weeks.

As the situation regarding Covid-19 changes, information is vital and we are working to ensure blind and partially sighted people are kept informed and have access to help.

It is a fast-evolving situation and we are ramping up our support networks and capabilities. We urge anyone in our community who needs help to call our Helpline on 0303 123 9999.

Matt Stringer, CEO of RNIB, said: “We know that RNIB’s services are a lifeline to potentially quarantined people. The safety of our customers, employees, volunteers and people in our establishments is paramount, but we continue to support delivery of critical services to our customers – from our helpline to ECLOs.

“In addition to the usual advice and support about anything to do with living with sight loss, our team will offer further support to anyone with sight loss who becomes isolated or is concerned about accessing information, products or services, and over the coming weeks we will increase that support to the blind and partially sighted community.”

 RNIB is offering help and support

RNIB’s Helpline: 0303 123 9999  remains open on weekdays (from 8 am-8 pm) and on Saturdays (9 am-1 pm).

Staff will be working from home in order to support our customers over coming weeks and, in addition to the usual advice and support about anything to do with living with sight loss, our team can offer further support to anyone with sight loss who becomes isolated or is concerned about accessing information, products or services.

Our team of advisers will help to connect people to sources of local support and find solutions with anyone who calls us. Not all the information about Covid-19 is accessible so we are working with public information providers to ensure information is accessible, including image descriptions online.

  • If anyone if finding it challenging to access key information, we can help. You can call the RNIB Helpline on 0303 123 9999 or email helpline@rnib.org.uk.
  • As people are spending more time at home, RNIB is offering more opportunities to connect with others via telephone and online; please contact the Helpline to sign up. You can also join our popular regional Facebook groups where many people are sharing local information, useful hints and tips and interesting things they have been up to.
  • Our ECLO (Eye Clinic Liaison Officer) service, as hospital eye care services are affected, will be delivered via telephone to ensure people, who are newly diagnosed or have a change in their sight, can access practical and emotional support. We are working with several other organisations, including the NHS and other charities, to focus our support where it is most needed.
  • We have increased the number of books for USB users so you can now have three books at a time. We encourage USB users to take advantage of this as it will help us keep production times down. In anticipation of potential issues producing and delivering USB sticks over the forthcoming months, we encourage as many customers as possible to receive Talking Books via our new digital service.

 

Coronavirus Covid-19:  RNIB services can help!

Coronavirus: How can RNIB Services Help You

Coronavirus Covid-19:  RNIB services can help!

RNIB’s services are needed more than ever in these uncertain times. Our teams are working hard and we aim to increase our support for blind and partially sighted people over the coming weeks.

As the situation regarding Covid-19 changes, information is vital and we are working to ensure blind and partially sighted people are kept informed and have access to help.

It is a fast-evolving situation and we are ramping up our support networks and capabilities. We urge anyone in our community who needs help to call our Helpline on 0303 123 9999.

Matt Stringer, CEO of RNIB, said: “We know that RNIB’s services are a lifeline to potentially quarantined people. The safety of our customers, employees, volunteers and people in our establishments is paramount, but we continue to support delivery of critical services to our customers – from our helpline to ECLOs.

“In addition to the usual advice and support about anything to do with living with sight loss, our team will offer further support to anyone with sight loss who becomes isolated or is concerned about accessing information, products or services, and over the coming weeks we will increase that support to the blind and partially sighted community.”

 RNIB is offering help and support

RNIB’s Helpline: 0303 123 9999  remains open on weekdays (from 8 am-8 pm) and on Saturdays (9 am-1 pm).

Staff will be working from home in order to support our customers over coming weeks and, in addition to the usual advice and support about anything to do with living with sight loss, our team can offer further support to anyone with sight loss who becomes isolated or is concerned about accessing information, products or services.

Our team of advisers will help to connect people to sources of local support and find solutions with anyone who calls us. Not all the information about Covid-19 is accessible so we are working with public information providers to ensure information is accessible, including image descriptions online.

  • If anyone if finding it challenging to access key information, we can help. You can call the RNIB Helpline on 0303 123 9999 or email helpline@rnib.org.uk.
  • As people are spending more time at home, RNIB is offering more opportunities to connect with others via telephone and online; please contact the Helpline to sign up. You can also join our popular regional Facebook groups where many people are sharing local information, useful hints and tips and interesting things they have been up to.
  • Our ECLO (Eye Clinic Liaison Officer) service, as hospital eye care services are affected, will be delivered via telephone to ensure people, who are newly diagnosed or have a change in their sight, can access practical and emotional support. We are working with several other organisations, including the NHS and other charities, to focus our support where it is most needed.
  • We have increased the number of books for USB users so you can now have three books at a time. We encourage USB users to take advantage of this as it will help us keep production times down. In anticipation of potential issues producing and delivering USB sticks over the forthcoming months, we encourage as many customers as possible to receive Talking Books via our new digital service.

 

Urgent letter sent to all the main supermarkets!

Urgent Letter sent to all the Main Supermarkets!

Urgent letter sent to all the Main Supermarkets!

As the challenges of food shopping have increased amid the uncertainty around Covid-19, several UK supermarket chains have prioritised opening at certain times of the day for vulnerable and elderly people.

RNIB, jointly with other sight loss sector charities Guide DogsThomas Pocklington Trust and Visionary, has written to supermarket chief executives to ask them how they are helping blind and partially sighted people. While we wait for their responses we have put together information we’ve found online about what they are doing to help disabled customers.

Letter Below

Dear Sir/Madam,   May I firstly take the opportunity to thank you sincerely for taking time out to read this letter at what I know is a period of unprecedented demand and strain on your sector, company and staff.   Like you, we are also coming to terms with what the coronavirus crisis means. In the forefront of our minds is how it will impact on blind and partially sighted people and how our charities can best act to continue to support their needs.

As you may be aware, our organisations work alongside and support blind and partially sighted people across the UK. Our key consideration at this time is how to ensure that they are able to continue to live independently and follow government advice such as “self-isolating”, something which poses a particular problem to our community.

A key element of everyday living is the ability to shop for groceries, medicines and other essentials for daily life. Blind and partially sighted people have historically taken advantage of online shopping and delivery services.

We have worked with many providers to ensure that apps and websites are accessible to allow people to independently fill their basket, check out and have it delivered to their door.   We want to acknowledge the excellent measures that some in the sector have put in place such as early shopping hours for vulnerable and disabled customers and please be reassured that such measures are hugely beneficial and welcome.

In relation to online shopping and home delivery however, we are receiving large numbers of distressed calls from blind and partially sighted people who are unable to obtain their usual delivery slot and in most cases are unable to get a suitable slot for over three weeks.

We are sure you can understand the anxiety this can cause for people who are often already struggling with their wellbeing, not to mention the worry of going without vital foods, medicines and other essentials.

We do understand that there are numerous calls on your sector at present to support society in a whole variety of ways, but I would respectfully ask you to consider putting in place a telephone or online scheme whereby blind and partially sighted people are able to pre-book online shopping and home delivery slots in order to guarantee their food supply and therefore provide them with the ability to live independently and minimise anxiety.

We plan to communicate with our members and service users to let them know what assistance supermarkets are putting in place next week. With this in mind, we would ask that you respond to this letter by Wednesday 25th March. We appreciate this is a short time frame, but one that we hope you will be able to accommodate given the severity of the circumstances.

We would be more than happy to work with you to formulate an appropriate scheme should our input prove helpful.

Signed by Thomas Pocklington Trust, Visionary, RNIB and Guide Dogs CEOs

 

Below you can find key information and links to the announcements from some of the key supermarket chains:

Last updated March 25 2020

Asda

Asda has placed limits on the amount of certain products individual shoppers can buy.

Updates on Asda’s reaction to the Coronavirus.

Co-op

All of its stores have a dedicated shopping hour for those at higher risk and the people who care for them.  You will need to contact your local store as these dedicated hours may vary

Morrisons

Morrisons is expanding its home delivery service and introducing new ways of delivering groceries and more slots for customers, which will also help vulnerable people and those affected by the virus. Morrisons is making more delivery slots available to customers both through Morrisons.com and the Morrisons Store on Amazon Prime Now.

Morrisons food boxes

Our new Food Boxes are designed to provide you with everyday essentials, without needing to leave your home. Our boxes contain £30 worth of groceries and we offer convenient delivery directly to your door for £5.

https://www.morrisons.com/food-boxes/how-it-works

Sainsbury’s

Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, all of the chain’s supermarkets will dedicate the hour of 8 am – 9 am to serving elderly, disabled and vulnerable customers, as well as NHS and Social Care workers.

Tesco

Tesco says it is prioritising the elderly and most vulnerable between 9 – 10 am on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, except for its Express outlets.

Waitrose

First hour of store opening to be dedicated to the elderly and vulnerable and it is exploring ways to offer its services remotely.

 

You can check for the latest information and find contact details for  all the major UK supermarkets on their websites.

 

Aldi: https://www.aldi.co.uk/

Asda: https://www.asda.com/

Best-One: https://www.best-one.co.uk/

Budgens: https://www.budgens.co.uk/

Co-Op: https://www.coop.co.uk/

Costco: https://www.costco.co.uk/

Costcutter: https://www.costcutter.co.uk/

Farmfoods: https://www.farmfoods.co.uk/

Iceland: https://www.iceland.co.uk/

Lidl: https://www.lidl.co.uk/

Londis: https://www.londis.co.uk/

Makro: https://www.makro.co.uk/

Marks and Spencer: https://www.marksandspencer.com/

Morrisons: https://groceries.morrisons.com/webshop/startWebshop.do

Nisa: https://www.nisalocally.co.uk/

Ocado: https://www.ocado.com/

Premier: https://www.premier-stores.co.uk/

Sainsbury’s: https://www.sainsburys.co.uk/

Sainsburys has a vulnerable persons careline – 0800 052 5500. It is attempting to prioritise vulnerable customers for home delivery.

Call wait times may be substantial.

Spar: https://www.spar.co.uk/

Tesco: https://www.tesco.com/

Waitrose: https://www.waitrose.com/

 

RNIB Helpline: Call on 0303 123 9999
We’re open 8 am-8 pm weekdays and 9 am -1 pm on Saturdays.

The RNIB Helpline team can give you advice and point you to the services that can help you face the future with confidence.