ANKERSIDE Shopping Centre has announced that it is taking part in Purple Tuesday, the UK’s first-ever national, accessible shopping day – a campaign which has been created to recognise the importance and needs of customers with disabilities.
Purple Tuesday launches on Tuesday 13 November and is the first awareness initiative of its kind for shopping centres and retailers to acknowledge how they currently support people with both visible and non-visible disabilities, and how they can assist even further.
The campaign is not only helping to raise awareness but to also reinforce the message that businesses in the retail sector are fully committed to ensuring an inclusive and enjoyable shopping experience for everyone, each and every day of the year.
Ankerside will be showing its support with information on display for visitors to learn more about the initiative. Customer-facing team members will be dressed in purple high-visability jackets to be easily identifiable and security staff will have purple ties on. There will also be a special showcase on the mall featuring purple items from centre retailers that are backing the campaign.
Mark Burbridge, centre manager at Ankerside, said: “Almost 20% of adults in the UK have a disability, 80% of which have an invisible or hidden impairment. This means that an incredible four out of five disabled customers may require some sort of support.
“For our visitors who experience the world differently, we want to ensure that at Ankerside, we are providing the best customer service and accessibility we can to all members of the community.
“We are continually working with our retailers to look for ways to improve visitors’ experience as it’s hugely important to us that everyone feels comfortable,” continued Mark. “Making simple adjustments to our surroundings opens up new opportunities for those with ‘silent’ disabilities to feel much more at ease when out in public spaces.
“We are honoured to be part of such an inspiring and thought-provoking campaign, which is really bringing together the community here at Ankerside.”
Purple Tuesday has been launched by disability organisation Purple, which provides support services to both disabled people and businesses, bringing both together with the aim of changing the disability conversation from one of disadvantage and inequality to one of potential and value.
The aim of the campaign – and subsequently its legacy – is to increase awareness of the barriers experienced by disabled people to encourage sustainable changes in business practice that improve customer experience over the long-term.
Mike Adams OBE, CEO of Purple, says: “We’re delighted that Ankerside Shopping Centre is supporting the Purple Tuesday campaign to promote better accessibility for disabled shoppers. This is a collaborative campaign that extends far beyond one day, and it’s vital that retail organisations come together to make shopping more pleasurable and efficient for everyone.”
For further information on disability services and facilities at Ankerside, please visit the website at www.ankerside.co.uk.