Top tips for helping blind people in hotels
Vision Hotels group has launched Top Tips to help hoteliers make their premises accessible to blind and partially sighted people.
- Make sure you know how to guide a blind person correctly. Action for Blind People or local societies for blind people can provide more information.
- Have information such as menus or price lists in large print or other accessible formats so blind and partially sighted people can read for themselves.
- Have an accessible website, so that blind and partially sighted people can book on-line.
- Be prepared to offer extra assistance, for example, guiding a customer to the bar or restaurant.
- Don't stroke or feed guide dogs or other assistance dogs without asking the owner first.
- Don't assume that all blind people are totally blind. Many have some partial sight that they can use.
- Use colour contrast to help people with poor sight distinguish outlines, e.g. using white crockery on a dark table, or having white walls with a dark carpet.
- Remember that the Equalities Act requires that you take reasonable steps to ensure that premises are accessible to visually impaired guests.
- Undertake an access audit, ensuring that it is carried out by a professional person with the necessary expertise.
- Ensure that people with sight loss are aware of emergency procedures and that key staff know where disabled guests and visitors are located within the hotel.
Vision Hotels are practicing what they preach, committing to the Accommodation and Catering Accessibility for Disability Initiative (ACAD). This is designed to improve vocational education and training for hotel and catering staff and management, so that they offer the same quality services to guests with disabilities as to non-disabled customers.
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