asked the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will ensure that telephone apparatus sold in the United Kingdom is readily adaptable to the needs of blind employees.199W
§ Mr. Butcher
Yes. The Telecommunications Bill places a formal duty on the Secretary of State and the Director General of Telecommunications to use their licensing and other powers to promote the interests of disabled persons, including the blind. The Bill also enables public funds to be paid to meet the costs of developing apparatus capable of being used by blind and other disabled persons. We are determined to ensure that private telephone exchanges which are capable of being adapted for use by blind persons continue to be available and my Department is already in discussion with the Royal National Institute for the Blind about the way these provisions can be implemented to help the blind.