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Nimbus launches the first national access card for disabled people
The newly-introduced Access Card is designed to easily and discreetly let businesses know the specific needs of disabled visitors.
One of the major issues facing disabled people is having to explain why they might need adjustments when accessing services. It is common to be asked to describe any conditions, sometimes in humiliating and unnecessary detail, to sporting and music venues or provide proof of disability.
Several high-profile venues are now bringing the card into practice, including: Capital FM Arena, Barclay Card Arena and Genting Arena in Birmingham, The SSE Arena Wembley, Download Festival, IPRO Stadium, Nottingham Forest’s City Ground all O2 Academies and Glastonbury Festival.
The individual needs of cardholders are assessed and entered into a secure database. The venue can access information on the barriers faced by the customer and can then anticipate how best to meet their needs.
Warwick Davis became aware of the card in the recent Reduced Height Theatre Company tour and sees the value in a scheme like this: “The Access Card has real potential as it recognises that accessing services is about what a provider needs to do to enable a visitor; that people have all kinds of different needs and abilities but the focus is sometimes more on what a disabled person can’t do than how to support them. Access isn’t simply about wheelchair bays and the card can help people communicate this without going into intrusive levels of detail”
Jonathan Brown, Chief Executive of Society of Ticket Agents and Retailers, said: “The AiE report pointed to the frustration experienced by customers who have to repeatedly provide proof of disability, so we’ve been looking at ways this process can be streamlined.
“Schemes such as the Access Card reduce the need for customers to provide proof each time they book tickets. This pre-registration system makes the process much simpler when booking again or when booking for other venues or events that accept the card.
“We’re really pleased to see schemes such as the Access Card being adopted and trialled by venues in 2015 as we all continue to work together to improve entertainment ticketing for deaf and disabled customers.”
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Disability Direct, the way forward