by Daniel Parker, RDPFS Intern
An article from Forbes written by Bérénice Magistretti, who is visually impaired, and published October 13, 2022, in recognition of World Sight Day, surveys some consumer brands that have recently shifted their focus to accessibility. She begins by highlighting the new partnership between Haleon and Microsoft that will make a slew of Haleon products accessible to the blind through the Seeing AI app. She also mentions another app called Be My Eyes, which connects people with vision loss to a worldwide network of over six million sighted volunteers that help blind people with visual concerns through on-demand video. For years now, Be My Eyes has also been partnering with an ever-growing list of companies, large and small, in many fields, so that blind users can speak to professional representatives for help with their products or services. Magistretti highlights the more recent trend of companies bringing inclusive design to the fore. One such is a British upstart called Roam, which specializes in natural wellness intimacy products like lubricants. Despite the high expense, logistical challenges, and high risk for error, Roam makes a point of putting Braille on all their products. Larger brands such as L’Occitane and celebrity ventures like Pharrell Williams’ Humanrace skincare line are also getting in on the Braille action, while other brands like Procter & Gamble’s Herbal Essences use non-Braille tactile features to distinguish their products. The efforts of these manufacturers will hopefully incentivize further growth in product accessibility. You can find much more information by reading the full article entitled From Pharrell’s Inclusive Skincare Line To A Lube With Braille Writing, Consumer Brands Are Finally Starting to Think About Blind and Visually Impaired Customers.