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The Opticians with 'No View' - Update 05/02/03
Member Name: jinty44
Date: 05/02/03, updated on 05/02/03 (816 review reads)
Disadvantages: Lack of care, Disregard/ignorance of legal duties., Total lack of compassion show to the disabled.
I telephoned my local Specsavers opticians requesting an appointment for my daughter-in-law who is totally deaf without speech and communicates through sign language, as she required an eye test before purchasing new glasses. This I was given.
As, to her disadvantage, I had attempted to interpret for her with my limited capabilities on her last visit, I then set about trying to enlist the services of a trained British Sign Language Interpreter. Having contacted my local social services I was advised it was the duty of Specsavers to ensure my daughter-in-law was ?able to make use of the services they provide? under Clause 21 of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995. I then telephoned the branch to advise them of this information and asked they confirm this was in order. I received a return call stating contact would have to be made with Head Office and they would get back to me.
As her appointment had been made for Monday 3rd February and an interpreter still had to be arranged I expected to hear fairly urgently. On Saturday 1st Feb. I went in to my local branch for an update, making the point a return call was necessary as it was fairly obvious I would be unable to telephone my daughter-in-law to cancel the appointment on Monday. I received an apology for this and was informed they were still awaiting a reply.
This morning (Tuesday 4th Feb.) unbelievably, I was informed they would not be supplying an interpreter as ?it was not required of them to do so until the year 2004?. Extremely angry I informed the lady in question I would be making this disgraceful situation public and could not believe an organisation of the magnitude of Specsavers would discriminate in this manner. I also requested this decision be faxed to me. I was then asked to give them a couple of hours more to contact their Managing Director.
This afternoon I received a call stating they had a ?loop system
8217; in operation to help the
hearing impaired. I replied my daughter-in-law was not hearing impaired, that she was totally deaf and the loop system was of no use whatsoever to the totally deaf. I was then asked if she had a carer as sometimes someone else can help! I cannot begin to tell you how angry I am at this abysmal attitude which smacks of the ?dark ages?. The call was ended when I again informed them they were in breach of the Disability Discrimination Act and this matter was most definitely not resolved. At this point I again requested this decision be faxed to myself, however I was informed this could not be done at this time. I then requested the name of the person who had made this decision, to which I was informed it was in fact their M.D. a Mrs E. Drake.
I fully intend making this shocking decision as public as I possibly can, and at this point I am also in touch with the Disability Rights Commission to pursue this matter legally.
Update - 05/02/03
Specsavers have now agreed they are in fact required by law to provide an interpreter and will do so.
On asking for some form of compensation, (I had thought a possible discount etc), re the distress and upset caused to both my daughter-in-law and myself, I have been informed they are unwilling to do so. However, I was also informed they do have an offer on just now!!!!
As Specsavers are a franchise I feel it is only fair to the other branches that I name and shame the branch involved: IRVINE, AYRSHIRE. SCOTLAND.
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