Tip #8 for Successful Interactions with a Blind Person: Location, Location, Location

If you see a blind person in public and you want to go say hello, it is usually good to start with something like, “Hello Tina, it’s Alex.” This is because, while it’s true that we as blind people often can learn to recognize voices, not all of us are good at this, just like not all sighted people are good at remembering names or faces. Also, some of us, myself included, contextualize voices. For example, I may recognize Nancy from the General Store in the context of being in the store, Mags from the Tuscany in the context of our local Italian restaurant, or June from being at the Bowen Island Pub. If I were to run into any of these folks outside of the contexts in which I recognize their voices, there is only about a 50% chance I’d recognize their voices. Over time, I get better at voices, but I personally prefer a greeting like, “Hello, Alex, it’s Carlos form the local Mexican restaurant.”

Side Note: Mexican food is delicious… Just saying!

This leads me to my next point. Everyone is different and this column as always reflects my opinions and those of my fellow contributors. Always take cues from any blind/DeafBlind/low vision person who come across over the advice given here as each individual will have their own needs and preferences. In that way, it’s much like the food service industry.

Got a question? Questions can be submitted by contacting us or by calling the Bowen Island Accessibility Group’s Community Mailbox at +1 (604) 947-9021, extension 123.

Check out more tips and tricks in our Tips and Tricks corner.