Getting what you need in the new world of disability care and support. Victorian Workshops now open for registrations.

Throughout April, May and June, Blind Citizens Australia will be hosting several workshops across Victoria to provide more information about the National Disability Insurance Scheme and My Aged Care. Find out more about the benefits of these workshops and how you can register.

Help us promote access and inclusion in your local community with our new EFTPOS accessibility postcards

Touchscreen technology has now entered the retail industry and is compromising the privacy, dignity and independence of people who are blind or vision impaired Australia-wide. BCA is working hard to address this issue at a national level, but we urgently need your help!

Perhaps you’ve already encountered an inaccessible touchscreen EFTPOS terminal when trying to pay for a product in a shop or settle the bill at a restaurant. If not though, you’re bound to come across one in your travels sometime soon. These devices do not have a physical keypad with buttons, and their touchscreen-only interface makes it difficult or impossible for many people who are blind or vision impaired to enter their PIN independently. This often results in a breach of privacy as people are left with no alternative but to divulge their PIN to another person in order to complete their transaction.

We need to make businesses more aware of the impact inaccessible touchscreen devices can have on customers who are blind or vision impaired, but it can be difficult for even the most experienced advocate to get the message across in some of the crowded and noisy environments where these devices are found. This is where our new advocacy tool comes in!

We’ve designed a postcard to enable any person who is blind or vision impaired who comes across an inaccessible touchscreen terminal to quickly and easily advocate for change. The front of the postcard includes the BCA logo and contact details, as well as the tag line:

“Use touch screen EFTPOS devices, lose touch with your customers”

The back of the postcard includes the following text:

“I want to pay you, but I can’t use your EFTPOS terminal because it does not have physical buttons. The touch screen design means that people who are blind or vision impaired like me cannot enter their PIN independently. I don’t want to share my PIN with you or anyone else – nor should I have to. Please give this card to your manager. Ask them to tell your bank to stop rolling out EFTPOS machines which can only be operated using touch screens and to give you a device with a keypad with buttons instead. This is the only legal and accessible way for a person who is blind or vision impaired to pay.”

Each postcard has a hole cut out of one corner to assist with orientation. When you are holding the postcard with the front facing towards you, the hole will be in the top left hand corner. If you are holding it with the back facing towards you, it will be in the right hand corner.

These postcards are available to you at no cost, all you have to do is contact us and ask for some to be sent to your nominated address. To assist with our work on this issue, we’d also really appreciate you getting in touch to let us know when and where you’ve used a postcard. You can contact us using the following details:

Phone 1800 033 660

SMS 0488 824 623

Email bca@bca.org.au

Job Post: WBU Human Rights & Advocacy Policy Analyst/Advisor

CLOSING DATE FOR APPLICATIONS: Monday, January 11, 2016

The World Blind Union (WBU) is a non-political, non-religious, non-governmental and non-profit-making organization, representing over 285 million blind and partially sighted persons in 190 member countries. It is the internationally recognized organization speaking on behalf of blind and partially sighted persons at the international level. Visit www.wbu.ngo

DATE: December 18, 2015

JOB TITLE: Human Rights and Advocacy Policy Analyst/Advisor

TERM: Full-time, One Year Contract with possibility for renewal

LOCATION: To be determined. Preference for location in a developing country in partnership with WBU member organization

REPORTING: The Human Rights and Advocacy Policy Analyst/Advisor reports directly to the CEO World Blind Union, with secondary day-to-day reporting to the Manager of the host partner

SUMMARY OF POSITION
The Human Rights and Advocacy Policy Analyst/Advisor will support the World Blind Union at all levels in carrying out its representation role on behalf of blind and partially sighted persons worldwide.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES entail (but not limited to):
 Analyzing and interpreting international instruments of importance to WBU and blind and partially sighted persons, including but not limited to:
 UNCRPD
 Post 2015 SDG’s
 Marrakesh Treaty
 Prevention of Blindness Action Plan
 CEDAW
 CRC
 UNOHCHR including Universal Periodic Review
 Assisting WBU at international and regional levels to develop and implement strategies and action plans regarding these instruments for the benefit of members at the grassroots level.
 Development of tools and resources to enhance member engagement and support them in their implementation strategies
 Provide Analysis and strategic advice on emerging international processes, instruments, priorities such as, for example:
 Disaster risk reduction
 Situation of refugees
 Post 2015 SDG’s
 Other emerging issues as they arise
 Provide support as expert advisor to WBU and its members on issues related to UN advocacy and representation
 Development and utilization of a variety of communications and training information, tools and resources through the utilization of technology and other methodologies to support our human rights and advocacy strategies and implementation. Such tools might include
 Website
 Webinars
 Social media channels, such as Twitter, blogs, etc.
 Training programs (harnessing technology)
 Developing a community of practice at regional level
 Liaise with other international partners as appropriate to facilitate and strengthen WBU’s representation work. In particular, these liaisons include International Disability Alliance, CBM Advocacy Coordinators, Vision Alliance members

QUALIFICATIONS: (EDUCATION, TRAINING, EXPERIENCE)
 Post-secondary education in a related field
 Experience in the areas of human rights, advocacy and disability rights
 International experience a strong asset
 Excellent written and oral communications in English essential as well as additional language ability, in particular French and/or Spanish.
 Well developed interpersonal and communications skills
 Superior analysis and writing skills
 Proficient in the use of Microsoft Office software, and social media
 Available for occasional international travel
 Personal knowledge of blindness or low vision a definite asset

SALARY RANGE: Approximately $40,000 USD, commensurate with experience

CLOSING DATE FOR APPLICATIONS: Monday, January 11, 2016

PLEASE SEND YOUR APPLICATION VIA EMAIL TO:

Dr. Penny Hartin
Chief Executive Officer
World Blind Union
penny.hartin@wbu.ngo

Please send cover letter and resume in MS Word format only

Updated BCA Constitution

Dear Member

At the 2015 AGM changes to the Blind Citizens Australia constitution were accepted by members.

Please find here a copy of the updated BCA Constitution 2015 (Word doc)

Keynote Address – BCA 2015 National Convention

For those who would like to listen to the audio, or read the Keynote Address presented at the 2015 Blind Citizens Australia National Convention, “BCA at 40: Where we are and how we’ve got here”, Bill Jolley has kindly made the text of the address available. To read or download a copy please go here: Text – BCA at 40 Keynote address (Word docx)

If you would like to listen to the Keynote audio, please go here: Audio – BCA at 40 Keynote address (MP3 file)
The audio file is quite large and might take a minute or so to load.

This year’s theme was “Looking Forward Looking Back” Celebrating 40 years of Blind Citizens Australia.

Event details
Date: Saturday 10 – Sunday 11 October 2015.

Venue: Mercure Perth Hotel
10 Irwin Street, Perth WA 6000
Phone: 08 9326 7000
Email Mercure Perth
Mercure Perth website

Visit the BCA 2015 National Convention webpage for further information.

Blind Citizens Australia (BCA) held its 40th Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Perth, at the Mercure Hotel, 10 Irwin Street Perth, on Sunday 11 October 2015 at 11.00am. The AGM was held in conjunction with the 2015 BCA National Convention and was streamed live over the internet.

The agenda for the AGM can be found here BCA 2015 AGM Agenda (Word doc) and included presentation and discussion of the 2014-15 Annual Report (Word docx) and the 2014-15 Financial Statements (Word docx)as well as the announcement of the election of Directors.

The special business for the meeting was consideration of some minor changes to the BCA Constitution (details can be found here) BCA Minor Constitution Changes (Word doc)

The constitution changes were considered and accepted for adoption at the meeting.

On behalf of the Board and staff of BCA, I do hope you enjoyed this year’s National Convention and Annual General Meeting if you were able to join us or listen in to the provided audio stream. As an organisation of and for people who are blind or vision impaired, it is important that we acknowledge and support each other to enhance the lives of people who are blind or vision impaired.

Greg Madson
Company Secretary