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The Hong Kong Society for the Blind - Information Accessibility Centre
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How to Communicate with Visually Impaired People

1.Not all Blind people are alike. Some have different needs and communication methods and styles. It is perfectly not to use label attitude to treat all the visual impaired.
2.You can identify yourself with your full name . You can clap on his/her shoulder if you do not know his/her name.
3.Blind is not a hearing disability. Do not shout. Blind is not a speech disability. If you have a question for the person with a visual disability, ask him/her not the companion.
4.Do not worry about substituting words for "see", "look", or even "blind." Do not avoid them where these words fit. You can talk about blindness itself, when you both feel comfortable about it.
5.Always identify yourself and your friends, let him know you are here.
6.If you have to leave, inform the visual impaired person and ask if she/he wants to talk to someone else or if they need to go somewhere.
7.If is always appropriate to offer your help; just do not be surprised it the individual would "rather do it himself/herself."
8.When talking to a visual impaired person, sometimes it helps to explain what is going on around you. Sometimes a person will ask you "what does this room look like or who is/are talking ...or how are the people dressed...or what are people doing now." It helps to describe visual information so the visual impaired person knows what is going on.
9.It will have to be a little slower, a little extra clear, and more thought will have to be given to a) the physical environment b) the context and c) organization of your thoughts.
10.Make the way clear with no obstacles and let him/her know if you make change on the furniture or other materials.
11.Please allow him/her to place his/her hand on your elbow or hand to walk side by side. Please never grab or pull his/her wrist or place your hand under his/her armpit as if he/she were treated as a child. It is vital for mobility and safety reasons.
12.Place his/her hand on the low side of a chair or sofa (down all the way from the top of related to the chair), allowing him/her find where to sit down. Please NEVER position him/her against it; otherwise, he/she will lose control of balance.
13.Use the clock direction to instruct the location. e.g. the cup is in your twelve direction and the wine is in your eleven direction.
14.When speak to low version person, he/she better stand between you and the light.
15.It is highly recommended that you wear a dark colored top, preferably, brown, navy, green or black, when you communicate with a person with low vision. It would help eliminate his/her eye strain.
16.Please stand in the less vision side if you guide the low vision person.
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