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Vision 2020 Australia welcomes banking sector review into accessible electronic payment systems

MEDIA RELEASE

Vision 2020 Australia welcomes yesterday’s announcement that Graeme Innes AM will lead the Australian Bankers’ Association review into electronic accessibility standards.

Transactions which are more than $100 require a PIN to be entered into the electronic device if paying by card.

New devices which are completely touch screen-based cannot be used by those who are blind or vision impaired, as they do not have the tactile function of a conventional device.

Chief Executive Officer of Blind Citizens Australia Emma Bennison said, ‘People who are blind or vision impaired are already feeling the effects of the implementation of new banking technologies like touch screen EFTPOS terminals and ATMs which have not been designed in consultation with us.

‘As a result, it is frequently impossible for us to complete everyday purchases and banking transactions privately and independently; tasks which sighted Australians take for granted and which were previously made accessible through talking ATMs and tactile keypads.

‘As a person who is blind himself, Graeme has experienced first-hand both the freedom of using a talking ATM and the frustration of using a touch screen device which does not have a tactile, numeric keypad, so is well placed to lead this important and timely review.

‘Blind Citizens Australia congratulates Graeme and looks forward to being involved in the development of banking accessibility standards which will protect our human rights as technology continues to evolve.”

Chief Executive Officer of Vision 2020 Australia Carla Northam agreed, stating, ‘Vision 2020 Australia advocates for a world in which people who are blind or vision impaired can remain independent and participate fully in the community.

‘While it is great that the banking sector is innovative with technology, the needs of those with a disability have to be taken into consideration, so that no one is left behind.

‘The banking sector’s willingness to develop and embrace new technology makes us optimistic that a more suitable payment solution that works for everyone can be found.’

ENDS

For more information: Angela Yin at Vision 2020 Australia 03 9656 2020, 0421 214 710 or ayin@vision2020australia.org.au

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