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RNIB Welfare Rights Services: what we do

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Presentation on theme: "RNIB Welfare Rights Services: what we do"— Presentation transcript:

1 NAWRA 3/12/04 Royal National Institute of the Blind Visual Impairment Awareness Workshop

2 RNIB Welfare Rights Services: what we do
Telephone advice and consultancy ( ) Casework service (CLS specialist level) Factsheets and welfare rights newsletter Grants and pensions for blind and partially sighted people in hardship Benefits training Take up campaigns Policy campaigns

3 How many people with sight loss?
Two million unable to read newsprint One million people are eligible for registration as blind or partially sighted One in twelve people over 60, and one in five over 75, are eligible for registration About 350,000 people are registered blind or partially sighted

4 Breakdown of numbers registered blind by age group

5 Numbers in your area The Department of Health website has statistics on registered blind and partially sighted people (as at March 2003) including regional breakdowns Estimates of the number of people eligible for registration (including regional breakdowns) are available from RNIB

6 What can blind people see?
4 per cent of people on blind register report being ‘totally blind’ 96 per cent can see light through a window 75 per cent can read newspaper headlines RNIB survey 1991

7 Macular degeneration

8 Macular degeneration

9 cataracts

10 Glaucoma - tunnel vision

11 Glaucoma - tunnel vision (severe)

12 Customer care A significant proportion of your customers/clients will have a sight problem. But it may not be obvious when you first meet them. Needs vary - ask individuals what they require Offer information in accessible formats (RNIB’s See it Right pack gives advice) Use a minimum of 14 point print as standard Offer home visits and help with form-filling

13 Customer care Consider people with sight problems when publicising your service and doing take up work Aim to make your premises accessible for people with sight problems Signpost or refer people to local societies for blind people, RNIB Helpline ( ), etc, when appropriate Consult with your customers and with local societies for blind people

14 Attendance Allowance There are only 56,800 AA claimants whose main disabling condition is blindness. (cf 121,000 registered blind people over 65.) Mallinson hasn’t had as much impact as hoped Barriers to take up: think AA is only for people with physical disabilities, difficulty with form, underestimate needs

15 DLA/AA: tips for form completion
Allow plenty of time Give full and detailed answers throughout the claim pack. Use RNIB’s form-filling checklist Be aware that customers may understate their care and mobility needs. Remember to consider the help they need, not just the help they get.

16 DLA/AA: tips for form completion
Include details of spoken help, help with reading, and help needed with social and leisure activities (Halliday) If the customer uses any special equipment, explain the equipment’s limitations. Offer to read the completed form aloud to the customer so they can check it before signing. Offer a signature guide.

17 Take up work: Useful avenues
Consider using the sight registers Local societies for blind people Social services: Sensory Impairment Teams Libraries (large print, audio, domiciliary services) Eye clinics Talking newspapers Local radio Think laterally - chiropodists, places of worship...

18 RNIB Helpline and website

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