Today is World Braille Day, a reminder of the importance of accessibility and independence for people who are blind or visually impaired.
The UN General assembly recently passed the World Blind Union’s Resolution recognising World Braille Day, and it is now celebrated annually on the 4th of January. In honour of Louis Braille, the inventor of braille, today is an opportunity to raise awareness about the challenges faced by visually impaired individuals.
According to RNIB, more than two million people in the UK are living with sight loss, and an estimated 285 million people are living with sight loss worldwide, with 39 million people who are blind and 246 million people who are partially sighted. These figures show us the huge significance in ensuring that businesses and governments create more economic and social opportunities for the blind.
Did you know:
– One in five people aged 75 and over are living with sight loss, and one in two people aged 90 and over are living with sight loss.
– Adults with learning disabilities are 10 times more likely to be blind or partially sighted than the general population.
– Age related macular degeneration is the leading cause of blindness in adults.
– Globally, the leading causes of sight loss are uncorrected refractive error and cataract.
– The number of people in the UK with sight loss is set to increase dramatically. It is predicted that by 2050 the number of people with sight loss in the UK will double to over four million.
– Only 17% of people experiencing sight loss are offered emotional support in relation to their deteriorating vision.
To help support employees / colleagues who are blind or visually impaired, there are numerous things organisations can do, such as offer practical support which including; work-based assessments, improving the quality of lighting, offering support workers and having access to relevant technology software.
World Braille Day spreads awareness about braille and other accessible forms of communication. Everyone’s deserves (and is legally entitled to) the same accommodations and service, regardless of ability. On World Braille Day, let’s remember that and do our part to make our workplaces more accessible for everyone.