Persatuan Mahasiswa Istimewa
Universiti Malaya


Monday, February 8, 2010

Understanding The Blind

When you meet a blind person, don’t be ill at ease, it will help if you remember the following points:

They are ordinary persons, just blind. You don't need to raise your voice or address them as if they were children. Don't ask their companion what they want--"Cream in the coffee?"--ask them directly.

1.They will most probably be using a long white cane to walk independently; or they may ask to take your arm. Let them decide, and please don't grab their cane or arm; let them take yours. Let them keep a half-step behind you to anticipate curbs and steps.

2.They would want to know who's in the room with them. Speak when you enter. Introduce him/her to the others including children, and tell them if there's a cat or dog in the room.

3.The door to a room or cabinet or to a car that is left partially open is a hazard to the blind.

4.At dinner they will not have trouble with ordinary table skills.

5.You don't have to avoid words like "see." they use them too.

6.They won’t want pity, but don't talk about the "wonderful compensations" of blindness. Their sense of smell, taste, touch or hearing did not improve when they became blind, they rely on them more and, therefore, may get more information through those senses than you do--that's all.

7.If they are your houseguest, show them the bathroom, closet, dresser, window--the light switch too. They would like to know if the lights are on or off.

8.They will discuss blindness with you if you're curious, but it's an old story to them. They have as many other interests as you do.

9.Don't think of them as just blind persons. they are just people who happen to be blind.

10.You don't need to remember some "politically correct" term, "visually impaired", "sight challenged" etc. Keep it simple and honest, just say blind.

The Traffic law require drivers to yield the right of way when they see the extended white cane. Only the blind will usually carry white canes. You see more blind persons today walking alone, not because there are more of them, but because they have learned to make their own way.

sumber: National Concil For The Blind, Malaysia

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