RNIB threatened legal action over lack of talking cash machines in Olympic Park

Sight-loss charity reveals that it withdrew the threat after Visa agreed to make its ATMs on the site more accessible

Visa ATM at the Olympic Park
Visa ATM at the Olympic Park

The RNIB has criticised the Olympic sponsor Visa for failing to install talking cash machines in the Olympic Park.

The sight-loss charity said in a statement that it had threatened legal action under the Equality Act 2010 last month to get audio technology installed on cash machines in the park, but had later withdrawn that threat after Visa promised to make two of the eight machines more accessible and agreed to have staff on hand to help people use them.

Steve Winyard, head of policy and campaigns at the RNIB, said: "We believe it is only fair and reasonable for banks to provide talking ATMs across their networks, especially at sites where everyone else has the luxury of 24/7 access. Already Barclays and Lloyds have agreed to this, and we expect two more banks to make a similar commitment in the near future."

A spokesman for Visa Europe said the company had worked hard to ensure that the cash machines used at the games were accessible to all disabled people.

He said that talking ATMs were not yet a standard feature in the UK, but that after the RNIB contacted the company in June this year it had carried out "extensive investigations" to find out whether it could be added for the games.

"The short timeframe meant this was not feasible," he said. "However, all ATMs are equipped with Braille and tactile keypads, and are at accessible heights for wheelchair users."

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