To mark Disabled Access Day, we’re sharing some information about the ways in which we strive to make our services easily accessible for everyone who needs our support. Not only is everyone entitled to good mental health care, people living with disabilities and long-term health conditions are often at greater risk of experiencing mental health problems, so it’s particularly important to make sure they are able to access our services.

We know how important it is that people seeking support can access clear, good-quality information, so we place importance on ensuring our communications and marketing materials are accessible. This includes:

  • Offering printed marketing materials in formats such as large print, Easy Read and braille;
  • Optimising our website in line with the double-A level of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, including a link in the header of our website to accessibility options and further guidance;
  • Adding alternative text wherever possible to the images we use, and avoiding sharing important information in image format, to allow people using screen readers to access the same information as everyone else.

We are a Disability Confident employer, and when recruiting new staff we welcome and encourage applications from individuals with lived experience of mental health problems, learning disabilities and other disabilities. All of our staff members are given access to professional development modules on various disabilities to ensure a good understanding of different conditions and how we may adapt service delivery to cater to peoples’ needs.

All our existing premises are maintained to meet and, where possible, exceed the requirements of the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA), and we take this into serious consideration when acquiring or leasing new premises by doing an access audit using the DDA Checklist to establish the building’s suitability and any adjustments which may need to be made. We never deliver services from premises which are not DDA compliant.  

Access to 24/7 telephone and webchat support as part of many of our services improves their accessibility for people who struggle to travel. We also work hard to offer support appointments alongside other healthcare teams, such as diabetic teams, coronary clinics, respiratory teams, and so on. This means that when someone we’re supporting needs to travel to be seen by these teams due to their physical health condition, we can also see them at the same location, meaning that they only need to make one trip. 

Find out more about our values