§ Mr. Barnes
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment if he will make a statement concerning the operation of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 in relation to the responsibilities of financial institutions when providing services. 
§ Ms Hodge
The Disability Discrimination Act makes it unlawful to discriminate against disabled people by treating them less favourably than people who are not disabled, or by failing to make reasonable adjustments when services are impossible or unreasonably difficult to use. Financial institutions have the same responsibilities under the Act as other providers of services to the public. The Code of Practice which we published on 29 June 1999 explains these duties and gives practical guidance on how to prevent discrimination against disabled people. The British Bankers' Association (BBA) has also published its own guidance—"implementing Part III of the Disability Discrimination Act: BBA guidance on banks' responsibilities to their customers from October 1999"—with examples specific to the banking sector. It has also published a leaflet for customers entitled "The New Disability Legislation: What You Can Expect from Your Bank".