New guide helps people with disabilities to get access to mobile phone services September 14, 2005

The Australian mobile telephone industry has developed a guide to help it meet the needs of people with disabilities.

The Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (AMTA) developed the Good Practice Guide on behalf of the industry. AMTA Chair Keir Preedy launched the Guide today at the AMTA Annual Conference in Sydney.

Mr Preedy said the Guide was designed to encourage and assist Australia’s mobile telecommunications industry to enhance and develop the accessibility of its products and services to people with disabilities.

“When we consider that 20% of Australia’s population has one or more disability, there is an opportunity for the mobile phone industry to provide the best possible access for people with disabilities to mobile phones and accessories,” he said.

“The Good Practice Guide offers practical suggestions that the industry can adopt in meeting the access needs of people with disabilities, as well as being the starting point for companies wishing to develop their own disability action plans.”

AMTA’s Accessibility Committee has reviewed and improved the accessibility section of its website, www.amta.org.au

The website will enable users to gain access to documents such as the Good Practice Guide and find out about news and research.

Mr Preedy said the Good Practice Guide would encourage retailers to offer customers with disabilities a range of methods to communicate with sales staff. This could include SMS, text phone, email or web-based form and fax.

The Guide offers advice to the industry to consider: customer access; sales practices; billing and after-sales service; complaints handling; staff training; catering for the needs of the individual customer; technology and innovation.

The Guide was developed in consultation with disability consumer groups, with assistance from the Telecommunications and Disability Consumer Representation (TEDICORE).

For a copy of the Good Practice Guide please click here

For more information contact Randal Markey, Manager, Communications, 0421 240550