Please help make Britain's cash machines accessible to almost half a million blind and partially sighted citizens! Most UK cash machines are currently a no go area for people who can't see to read the screen.
Major banks in the UK have not enabled the "talking" facilities that have been offered by banks in the USA, Australia and India for years. RNIB launched the "Make Money Talk" campaign to rectify this situation.
Barclays recently became the first major UK bank to provide its blind and partially sighted customers with accessible talking ATMs. "It's amazing and yet such an ordinary thing" was the verdict of many at the launch event in London.
But it's now two years since campaigners started calling for action and it's proving really tough to get some banks to commit. This is where you can help.
Show your support for blind and partially sighted people by telling each uncommitted bank that they need to enable talking facilities on their cash machines.
I am extremely concerned to hear from Royal National Institute of Blind People's (RNIB) Make Money Talk Campaign that your bank's cash machines are unusable to nearly 400,000 blind and partially sighted people in the UK.
[Your comments will be inserted here.]
Unlike Barclays Bank, Lloyds Banking Group and Nationwide Building Society, you have not yet committed to making your cash machines "talk" and I feel it is not acceptable for [bank name] to continue providing ATM services that needlessly exclude blind and partially sighted people.
I believe everyone has a right to equal access where solutions exist and it is important to me that [bank name] takes a lead on disability access and social inclusion issues.
It is only right that customers like me, but who are blind and partially sighted, can use the same range of [bank name] ATM services that I take for granted.
Barclays have now rolled out their talking ATMs and Nationwide and Lloyds have announced that they will add voice assistance to their ATMs in 2013, NCR and Wincor Nixdorf both major suppliers of cash machines in the UK have also committed to this campaign by making voice assistance a standard fitment in their product range.
Please can [bank name] match Barclays, Lloyds and Nationwide so ending the exclusion of blind and partially sighted people from independent access to your ATM services.
To find out more about the problems blind and partially sighted people face and what practical changes make a real difference, please visit www.rnib.org.uk/TalkingCashMachines
Yours faithfully, [Your name here]
Email For Non-Customers
Dear Chief Executive,
I am writing because I care about the work your business does to make your products accessible. Following Barclays Bank having just rolled out voice assistance on most of their cash machines, I am particularly interested in the steps you are taking to make your cash machines accessible to blind and partially sighted customers.
[Your comments will be inserted here.]
I know you put excellent customer service at the heart of what you do, but I am disturbed to learn that you have not yet committed to making your cash machines provide voice assistance for customers to operate ATMs if they cannot see the screen.
I understand from 'Make Money Talk' published by Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) that cash machine manufacturers can supply machines that "talk" through an ear phone facility. This enables blind and partially sighted people who aren't able to read the screen to operate the machine independently.
Although I am sighted myself, the fact that your bank has not yet matched Barclays, Lloyds and Nationwide concerns me because blind and partially sighted customers don't have the same choice to use your cash machines as I do.
It seems people with sight loss "make do" without cash machines but this is neither in the customer nor the bank's long-term interests, especially when it means asking strangers to help withdraw cash.
Please could you commit now to install "talking" facilities into your cash machines for blind and partially sighted customers?
To find out more about the problems blind and partially sighted customers are experiencing or for practical tips on what you can do please visit www.rnib.org.uk/TalkingCashMachines
Taking positive steps now will make a huge difference to blind and partially sighted people who wish to bank with you.
I look forward to hearing that you are committing to this campaign soon.
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