Money Wellness
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calendar icon06 Jul 2023

Deafblind Awareness Week – supporting our hearing and vision-impaired customers

Deafblindness is a combined hearing and vision impairment that’s severe enough to affect how someone communicates, gets around and accesses information. 

It’s far more common than many realise, with more than 400,000 people living with the condition in the UK – enough to fill Wembley Stadium five times.

The severity of deafblindness varies enormously - from someone struggling to see and hear the TV  to them not being able to see or hear anything at all.

Although lots of deafblind people have partial sight and hearing, it can still make life extremely difficult.

Deafblindness can be a significant barrier to accessing everyday services, including help with money.

Our aim is to make our debt help as accessible as possible.

We do this by offering a Typetalk service that allows hearing and speech-impaired people to communicate over the phone. When a customer uses the Typetalk service:

  • They call us by phone, using the BT textdirect prefix 18001.
  • An operator joins the line to relay the conversation.
  • The customer types their part of the conversation.
  • The operator reads out exactly what’s typed to our adviser.
  • Our adviser replies saying ‘go ahead’ after speaking. This tells the operator they’ve finished speaking and the operator types exactly what’s said.
  • The customer can then read the response on their textphone display panel.

We can also send documents to vision-impaired customers in braille or large print.

Could you do with some extra help? Let us know how we can support you on your journey to better financial health.

Avatar of Caroline Chell

Caroline Chell

Caroline has worked in financial communications for more than 10 years, writing content on subjects such as pensions, mortgages, loans and credit cards, as well as stockbroking and investment advice.

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