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Inclusive Spaces - Big Bazaar, Thakur Mall makes shopping easy for the blind

Shopping is not fun for everyone. And shopping in a mall can be even more confusing. Look at it from the perspective of a disabled person, and the picture is even more chaotic. Few malls in India have Braille signage, or sign language interpreters.

Mall shopping becomes less chaotic

Future Retail Limited, the firm which hosts value format Big Bazaar, is determined to change that. They are looking at introducing accessible shopping across a few stores in India. In October, Big Bazaar launched a special 'listening session' in 105 stores where people with disabilities were invited to experience the new features and give their feedback. Based on their inputs, changes are gradually being made.

One such Big Bazaar store in Thakur Mall, Kandivili, in Mumbai is the focus of our next photo story in the Inclusive Spaces series. Dinesh Saraiya, who is blind, and his wife Monika, a wheelchair user, sent us their pictures while they were shopping at this particular mall.

Shopping assistants, priority counter, trained staff

From an escort who guided them from the entrance to shopping assistants, they were helped at every stage. The assistant are trained on how to communicate with the disabled and have a basic understanding about every disability. Big Bazaar is training its staff across various touch points to be sensitive to the needs of the disabled.For instance, the Saraiyas were even helped out with a vehicle to go back home.

All Big Bazaar stores have a dedicated priority counter for easy billing. There is trained staff at all key touch points from security to cashier to customer desk. There is even an Accessibility Champion in every store to handle questions.

Going ahead

Some of the features Big Bazaar has in the pipeline are tactile maps in the key stores, accessible changing rooms for wheelchair users, and unisex washrooms.

To watch the other stories in the Inclusive Spaces series, click:

Ability On Wheels New Delhi

Children's Parks Bengaluru

DAG Modern New Delhi

Delhi Metro

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