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Post Office Card Account

Volume 412: debated on Friday 11 April 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) what discussions he has had with the Disability Rights Commission and disability organisations about the compliance of the PIN pads for the Post Office card account with the provisions of the Disability Act 1995; [108647](2) whether guidance on pensions and benefits payments has been revised following experience with access to the PIN pads for Post Office card accounts by disabled people, with particular reference to those with sight problems; [108648](3) what requirements relating to access for blind, partially sighted and other disabled people are included in Post Office Limited's contract with the Government to provide the card account system; [108649](4) what plans his Department has to monitor the accessibility of the Post Office card account to disabled people as it is introduced. [108651]

Access to Post Office branches, the Post Office card account and PIN pads are the responsibility of Post Office Limited. We are aware that groups representing disabled and blind/partially sighted customers have raised concerns about the PIN pads that have been installed in Post Offices. The Post Office have acknowledged that they need to make the PIN pad more accessible and user friendly. They have invited the RNIB and other disability groups to work with them. All customers will be given information about all of the account options available and it will be for them to consider which account best meets their needs and circumstances. The Department meets regularly with external interest groups including RNIB, RNID and Disability Alliance to discuss all issues surrounding Direct Payment.All customers will be given information about all of the account options available and it will be for them to consider which account best meets their needs and circumstances. The Department meets regularly with external interest groups including RNIB, RNID and Disability Alliance to discuss all issues surrounding Direct Payment.