In 2011, the RNIB’s ‘Make Money Talk’ report showed that the majority of blind and partially sighted people needed help using a cash machine. While some chose to only get their money in branch during opening hours, others took the risky step of asking passers-by to help with their PIN. The report found that:
- There are 370,000 registered blind or partially sighted people in the UK
- 11% use cash machines independently – but half find them difficult or very difficult to use.
- A fifth have asked a stranger for help with their PIN.
- Audio cash machines can also help people with dyslexia, learning disabilities or other cognitive impairments.
The ‘Make Money Talk’ report also found that 44% of blind and partially sighted people would be happy to use cash machines if they were accessible and could ‘talk’.
Inspired by the RNIB’s campaign, Barclays become the first high-street bank to make cash machines across the UK accessible to people who are blind or partially sighted – with over 80% of their machines converted to use this audio technology.
To access this service you need to use a headphone-enabled machine – that’s one that has a headphone jack (some older machines don’t have headphone jacks) and your own ear phones. Simply plug your headphones in and the audio cash machine will talk you through what you need to do.
The audio voice is the same that you hear on telephone banking and every time the screen changes the machine plays an audio file such as ‘Please take your cash’.
Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) presented Barclays with an Exemplar Service Award for their audio ATMs.
Please click here to visit the Barclays website to find out more.