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New app helps to combat poor customer service faced by people with disabilities

A new app-based system has been launched that aims to “shake up” the customer service industry across shops, banks and other venues. The Welcome app lets people with disabilities tell shops and venues of their arrival, so that staff can provide tailored assistance suited to their condition. Designed by assistive technology company Neatebox, the free […]

Housing help tips, podcasts and lifelines for people with sight loss, collected online

A new online housing guide for people with sight loss has been launched, collecting together existing resources, advice and podcasts to help people in a range of situations. The free guide has been created by sight loss charity Thomas Pocklington Trust, as a comprehensive portal for visually impaired people who are looking for a new […]

Talking ATMs launched at all branches of major UK bank

Santander has announced talking ATMs for blind and visually impaired customers across all of its UK branches. Many banks offer talking ATMs at some branches, but Santander’s move makes it the first bank to offer the service at every one of its UK outlets – around 1,400. In May, HSBC launched 1,500 talking cash machines […]

Interview with Penny Melville-Brown OBE: Baking Blind – an online and global adventure

Cooking is yet another daily task that many people take for granted. Having sight loss can make cooking incredibly difficult, but Penny Melville-Brown OBE – disability rights advocate and Director of Disability Dynamics – wanted to show the world otherwise. Baking Blind is her YouTube channel and online project, featuring videos of Penny – who […]

“iOS 11 Without the Eye” is coming, here’s how to get it

The “iOS Without the Eye” series is our most popular tutorial. We’re thrilled that so many VoiceOver users find it an indispensable tool for getting to grips with all the changes in the software powering their iDevice. Thanks so much to everyone who purchases these books and recommends them to their friends. You rock. You also make it all worthwhile.


I start writing these books on the day of WWDC, and believe me, when that first developer beta comes out, it can often be a test of all those new mindfulness skills I claim to have acquired.


We’ve kept the price the same for this book as we have in previous years, $19.95. But we have made one important change I want to tell you about.


Since the first book in this series in 2013, we’ve offered pre-orders, and masses of people have taken advantage of them. The idea behind this was that you could order the book in advance, and have it in your email box on iOS release day, to guive you through.


Increasingly, we’ve found that when we send bulk mailings like this, some email providers, particularly Gmail, think we’re sending spam. Sometimes the mail ends up in the spam folder, other times it doesn’t make it at all. That’s not the kind of good customer experience Mosen Consulting prides itself in. We want to do all we can to make sure you have the book when you need it most.


For this reason, we’ll be releasing the book fractionally earlier, but not making it available for pre-order. With our handy-dandy e-commerce platform, it means that you’ll be able to make your purchase, and download it right away. No anxt about wondering what happened to that book you were promised.


So, to be advised the moment the book is available for order, be sure to follow us on Twitter or subscribe to our announcements list.

To learn all about “iOS 11 Without the Eye”, head over to

You asked for it, here it is. A comprehensive course from Mosen Consulting on podcasting

Time flies, and it’s hard to believe Mosen Consulting has been in business now for almost 4.5 years. Thanks for helping to make it a reality.


When I started this journey, I surveyed the community about how we could best help. Then, and over the years since, demystifying how to get into, or improve, the creation of podcasts was a popular request.


I knew that this would be a big undertaking if it was going to be done thoroughly. At last, I’ve been able to pay this topic the serious attention it needs. The result is a four-week, eight-hour course, “Unleash your Inner Podcast”. I called it that because there may well be a podcast inside most of us.


Mosen Consulting has trained a number of people who have gone on to running successful podcasts, so you can benefit from all we’ve learned together at a much more affordable rate than the cost of one-on-one training.


I’m also glad that we’ve waited this long, because there are some very cool new tools and services now available that have emerged recently. They’ll make a big difference to the sound of your podcast.


Unleash your Inner Podcast is suitable for those who have always wanted to give podcasting a go but didn’t know where to begin, and for those who are already
podcasting and may want a few tips and tricks.


I’ve produced a thorough outline of what you’ll get if you purchase this eight-hour series of webinars. You can look it over, and I hope make a purchase,
Hope to see you in the course room soon.

Invictus Games are an Opportunity to Advocate for Disability Rights

The Invictus Games will be a tremendous moment to celebrate our veterans and their sacrifices. The Games can also be a chance to apply pressure on our elected leadership to follow through with action on the promises they made for disability advocacy. By Adam Kassam
Fri., Aug. 18, 2017

I Am.

These two diminutive words have featured prominently in arguably one of the most patriotic advertising campaigns in this country’s history. And while Molson was able to capitalize on nationalistic pride by creating the “I am Canadian” commercials, the slogan I Am, inspired by key phrases of the Invictus poem, will carry an entirely different meaning in the coming weeks.

From Sept. 23 to 30, Toronto will play host to the Invictus Games, an initiative started by Prince Harry with his vision to create an international version of the U.S.-based Warrior Games for wounded, ill and injured military personnel and veterans. Invictus Latin for unconquerable is also the title of the poem that inspired the I Am slogan.

Interestingly, the poem was penned by William Ernest Henley, who suffered from tuberculosis and received a below-knee amputation. That Prince Harry named the Games as a subtle nod to an English poet who could relate to other amputees many of whom will be competing in the Games is quite an elegant anecdote.

Not so elegant, however, is the considerable amount of work we as a society still need to do in terms of advocacy and accessibility for those with disabilities. Canada has an opportunity to be a global leader in this area, but it needs to improve its track record of championing causes for both veterans and civilians with disabilities.

Disability, as defined by the World Health Organization, is an umbrella term covering impairments, activity limitations, and participation restrictions. An impairment is a problem in body function or structure; an activity limitation is a difficulty encountered by a person in executing a task or action; while a participation restriction is a problem experienced by an individual in involvement in life situations.

Military veterans often suffer violent injuries on the battlefield. These include physical injuries such as traumatic amputations, brain injuries and spinal cord injuries, in addition to the development of latent diseases including chronic pain and mental health disorders including depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress. Moreover, a study published in the Journal of Disability and Rehabilitation shows that Canadian military veterans are more than twice as likely as the rest of the population to experience a long-term disability.

Canada’s defence minister, Harjit Sajjan, recently announced the federal government’s defence policy entitled “Strong, Secure and Engaged,” which comes with a price tag of $62 billion. Most of the investment will focus on military infrastructure, however, $198.2 million or just $9.91 million a year will be invested in what is described as the Total Health and Wellness Strategy. Disappointingly, this represents less than 0.5 per cent of the entire budget. Put another way, the federal government spends more than twice on the prime minister’s personal security than it plans to spend for all military veterans’ disability-related health needs in a given year.

To its credit, Canada is one of a few nations to have a federal minister dedicated to addressing the needs of those with disabilities. However, nearly two years after being installed as Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, Carla Qualtrough has yet to produce the legislation she was tasked with.

In her mandate letter from the Prime Minister, her top priority was to lead an engagement process with provinces, territories, municipalities and stakeholders that will lead to the passage of a Canadians with Disabilities Act. While the minister indicated it was too early to speculate on a timeline for this legislation, two years can seem like an eternity for those dependent on these initiatives.

Even provincially, the government has failed to keep its promise of enforcing the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. This comes as Premier Kathleen Wynne recently amended the requirements of the Customer Service Accessibility Standard, enacted under the disabilities act, in what critics have called “a sad game-changer for 1.8 million Ontarians with disabilities.”

The Liberal government has even gone so far as to obstruct investigations by disability advocates. This does not seem like leadership “committed to building a more accessible Ontario as it is not only the smart thing to do, it’s the right thing to do.”

The Invictus Games will be a tremendous moment to celebrate our veterans and their sacrifices for the freedoms we enjoy every day. It will also be a high-profile event attended by all levels of government. With municipal, provincial and federal elections around the corner, the Invictus Games can serve the function of applying pressure on our elected leadership to follow through with real action on the promises they made for disability advocacy.

Adam Kassam, MD, is a resident in the Department of Physical Medicine and rehabilitation at Western University in London, Ont.

Original at

MRTP 138: What’s New in Rumorland

In Episode 138 of The Maccessibility Roundtable Podcast, our knights discuss:

  • iPhone and iOS Rumors
  • What would compel you to buy a new iPhone
  • The Eclipse
  • Shelly at the CMD-D Conference
  • Darcy’s airPods
  • What Macs we have and why
  • The rumored LTE Apple Watch

Knights on this episode:

Links For This Episode

Eclipse Links

Scripting and Automation Links

Sponsor for this episode

This episode is brought to you by Holly’s perfectly Posh. Perfectly Posh is a line of skin care products with naturally based ingredients that are good for your skin and designed to pamper. To learn more or to order visit my website. If you don’t feel comfortable ordering online, feel free to get in touch with me. My twitter is listed above.

Facts have no political affiliation

On Tuesday November 8th, I was in Amsterdam with Job van Achterberg. I did a presentation for Fronteers monthly meetup. The organizers of Fronteers had set Job and I up in a fantastic venue to do a couple of accessibility talks. It was a TV studio that also had a bar. Fronteers brought in food […]

Numerous Barriers to Education and Jobs for Persons with Disabilities in Armenia

According to the Agency of Medical and Social Expertise of RA, at the beginning of this year 210 000 persons with disabilities were registered in Armenia, while at the moment the number is below 200 000, Panorama reports. Where did those 10 000 people disappear, the head of the “Unison” NGO Armen Alaverdyan asked today […]