CHANNEL 4 news presenter Jon Snow has recorded audio versions of crucial coronavirus information to ensure it is readily available for blind and partially sighted people.
Mr Snow said: “The coronavirus pandemic has changed life for all of us. With guidelines on how people can keep themselves and their communities safe, it’s of the utmost importance that everyone has access to this information.”
Since the outbreak, the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) has found that not all Government information has been made available in alternative formats.
Finding from RNIB also suggest that 26% of people aged 75 and over who are blind or partially sighted do not have access to the internet, where much of the information about coronavirus is found.
As part of RNIB’s campaign for accessible information, the charity has been working with the Cabinet Office Disability Unit to create audio recordings of the latest information, and they are now available on RNIB’s Helpline.
Jamie Dormandy, head of customer service at RNIB, said: “At a time when public health information is more important than ever, it’s essential that all of the two million people living with sight loss have access to these guidelines.
“We’re pleased to have worked with the Cabinet Office Disability Unit and Jon Snow on providing audio versions of this information and for their help in supporting blind and partially sighted people during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.”
A list of frequently asked questions about the pandemic, as well as information on staying healthy, exercise, accessing food and medicine, financial support and statutory sick pay are among the recordings that are available.
Justin Tomlinson, Minister for Disabled People, said: “We are supporting disabled people throughout this pandemic and these recordings will offer reassurance and guidance to many, in voices that we all know and trust.
“Our priority is to ensure our public information remains accessible to all, including blind and partially sighted people, and I commend RNIB and everyone involved for working with us on this important initiative.”
- To access the recordings on RNIB’s Helpline, call 0303 123 9999 and press 5.
- As well as the recordings, callers can speak to RNIB’s advisers about anything related to sight loss, including advice and support related to coronavirus, access to information and shopping, and how to stay connected during this time.