Blind Low Vision NZ Working Collaboratively To Ensure No One Left Behind During Covid-19 Lockdown

Auckland, 6 April – Blind Low Vision NZ is uniting with blind, low vision, deafblind and other organisations to ensure Kiwis living with sight loss have access to the essentials during the Covid-19 crisis.
“Access to essential services such as the supermarket and the pharmacies is a particular concern for people who are blind or have low vision,” says Blind Low Vision NZ Chief Executive John Mulka.
While people with an access need can use public transport, Taxis and Uber’s Ride sharing app to get to an essential service, many eye conditions develop later in life and those over 70 have been asked to remain at home to limit their risk of contracting Covid-19.
Blind Low Vision NZ and the organisations we work with have been advocating for supermarkets to prioritise their online services to people who cannot physically get to a store with many supermarkets making a commitment to do so.
Many Blind Low Vision NZ clients have limited or no access to technology and may be feeling more isolated at this time.
Working collaboratively with blind, low vision and deafblind organisations, we are phoning our community checking-in on the health and wellbeing and offering support. If someone doesn’t have access to essential services, we are connecting them to organisations who can help like Age Concern and Civil Defence.
“If you are blind or have low vision, please know that you do not have to go through the Covid-19 crisis alone. We want no one to fall through the cracks and not have access to the essentials. Get in touch on 0800 24 33 33 or email [email protected]
Blind Low Vision NZ has been classed as an essential service. All our services are operating but with 95 per cent of our employees working from home and delivering service remotely. “It’s critical for us to keep providing practical and emotional support to people who are blind or have low vision to keep doing the things they need and want to do.”