Charity launches national quality assurance mark

The RNIB establishes a national quality assurance mark which will be used on products to indicate they are easy to use if a person is blind or partially sighted

The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) has established a quality assurance mark which will be used to identify products that are easy to use for blind or partially sighted people. 

Products and services which appear with the ‘RNIB Approved’ status mark will have gone through a rigorous testing process by accessibility experts, before being reviewed by a panel of blind and partially sighted people, the charity confirmed. 

RNIB Approved was developed with advice from Dr Gabriella Spinelli, reader in design innovation in the Department of Design at Brunel University. The charity explained that the assurance mark was established in response to demand from people with sight loss and businesses which want to ensure their products are accessible to all. 

New debit and savings cards launched by the Royal Bank of Scotland this week will be the first products to receive the new mark of approval. The bank has said that the cards are the first to be completely accessible for blind people, with features introduced to ensure customers can use them independently. The features include a notch on the bottom right corner to aid with orientation, as well as different braille characters in the top right corner to indicate the type of card. 

Head of solutions from strategy and planning at the RNIB, Steve Tyler, said: “It’s really important that blind and partially sighted people can go about their everyday business, like banking and shopping, with ease and confidence. 

“It can be a frustrating and time consuming process to find products that work for you and we hope that blind and partially sighted will come to recognise RNIB Approved as a mark they can trust.