Purple Tuesday UK: Accessible Shopping

by Chelsey Zumpano

Chelsey wearing a purple sweater, purple leggings, purple cat-eye glasses, and gray boots. She has her orange, blue, and yellow cane in her right hand.

Purple Tuesday is on November 13th in the UK and is an accessible shopping day for those of us with disabilities. I think this is a great starting point and should be an on going thing! Now I’m not in the UK, but I’m in the US and I’m going to give some of my tips to make shopping accessible for us blind.

1 Treat us like everyone else and ask us if we need help when we walk in the store.

2 Say I’m looking for a sweater and you say, “It’s over there.” Yeah don’t do that! Take me to the sweaters by doing sighted guide, “my hand on your arm just above your elbow.” I can also follow you or you can tell me where the sweaters are by saying, “The sweaters are to racks to your left.”

3 If I ask what colors you have, then you describe them to me. Don’t just say, “it’s purple.” Say, “It’s dark purple with red tones.”

4 Then when I’m paying let me know where the card reader is. I can put my pin in myself, and let me know if it asks me for cash back. If the keypad doesn’t have the little dot on the five, I’ll do credit instead. Then you will direct me where to sign.

5 Please let me know what bag you put the receipt in. When handing me the bags make sure you hand me both handles.

6 When shopping online please have ALT text on your pictures and this allows you to add image desscriptions. Make sure image descriptions are extremely detailed, from the style of the outfit, to the color, if it has any graphics, lace, if the jeans have holes, or if the shirt falls off one sholder.

7 Make sure all the links are readable with a screen reader and able to be clicked on when using a screen reader.

If you have any tips leave them in the comments and if you went shopping today let me know what you got.

If you would like to be interviewed or otherwise contribute to this blog or YouTube send an email to:

viblindresources@gmail.com

Meet the Blind Month: My Eyes Hate This Weather!

by Chelsey Zumpano

I love fall the crunch of leaves under foot, the sweet taste of caramel apples, the heat of hot chocolate in my belly, going to the pumpkin patch, curling up under a blanket with my favorite book, and being able to wear hoodies again. But there is a huge down side to fall that most people wouldn’t think of and that’s the weather, ′more specifically how the weather effects my vision′.

I’ve mentioned in videos before how overcast days are really bad for me: the light is to bright and it reflects off every thing making it hard to see. Then when I go inside my eyes need to adjust, (just like when it’s sunny), so I still wear sun glasses. But right now a lot of my sun glasses seem to dark, even when it’s sunny out.

Another thing that can happen to me on overcast days is migraines and my migraines mean that everything is to bright and there are deeper shadows, (along with a head ake), I used to get them a lot back in high school and my eyes already had, (and still have), truble focusing before 9:00 o’clock and migraines don’t help. Part of the reason is I don’t sleep well, but mostly my eyes just don’t like the early morning.

The best thing for me to get rid of migraines is sleep and ibuprofen for the headache part. Some other things that have helpt me recently are turning the screen curtain on my Ipad and reading on my BrailleNote, turning on invert colors on my Ipad takes some of the brightness away, and not using my Ipad at all. I also sometimes feel like everything is to loud on those days, so I can’t edit videos. So limiting my use on my Ipad is best and to just read on my BrailleNote, but I don’t always do this.

I know when I’m on my Ipad all the time it makes my vision worse, which inturn makes my anxiety worse because I’m hyperaware of how my vision is. It doesn’t matter that this happens every year my anxiety doesn’t care! Maybe I choose not to remember this time of year or I block it out. Whatever the case my anxiety is just really bad around this time of year. It’s like when I’m feeling really overwhelmed with all the people talking my brain hyperfocuses on how dim/yellow the lighting is and then I’m working myself into a panic attack. Some things that help me are to get away from everyone for awhile: I usually go in my room, outside, or another room with less people.

I’ve decided to write a vision and anxiety journal to help myself cope better. I’ve found writing and talking my thoughts out helps me to feel less like my anxiety is controlling my life and it’s all thanks to this blog and YouTube. The journal will be for myself only becxs good to do something just for yourself and yourself alone.

Let me know down in the coments: if the weather effects your vision and what you do to help it? Also if you’d like to be interviewed on this blog or contribute to this YouTube Channel send an email to:

viblindresources@gmail.com