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Want to stay on the right side of the law? We support businesses and public authorities and help them to promote good practice.

Getting customer service right

Every Customer Counts

What you need to know

Good practice videos

Getting customer service right - disability etiquette
Making sure that your staff can provide great customer service for disabled people can make a huge difference.

A disability confident and well-trained staff team will provide better customer service and boost your sales.

Nominating an Access Champion within your business could work wonders; they can help improve access to your services so you can reach more customers.

Staff training: break down the barriers
Help your staff team become disability confident and they can provide a better quality of service that keeps customers coming back for more. Polite staff and good customer service is key.


Hidden disabilities
Some of your customers will have impairments that are not easily recognised and it might not be immediately obvious that they need your help and attention. Some people may have a learning disability or difficulty, and some may have mental health issues. It will be reassuring and helpful to be patient and ask how you can help them.
Jam Logo
JAM Card
A new initiative called the JAM (Just a Minute) Card has been designed to help local businesses and services support people with learning disabilities / difficulties more effectively.

The JAM Card is the same size as a credit card that people with learning disabilities / difficulties can carry and use to alert staff to be patient when interacting with them.

Customer service tips:

Good manners

  • Introduce yourself, let customers know you are available to help.
  • Always talk to the customer directly, not who they are with.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask ‘Can I help?’ or ‘How can I help you?’
  • Be patient and ready to repeat or clarify something – your customers may present you with their JAM card.
  • Speak clearly and face-to-face to people who are lip-reading.
  • Offer to write things down.
  • Offer choice and dignity – don’t make assumptions - not everyone wants or needs help.

Practical assistance

  • Offer to find or reach for items.
  • Can you carry or put items aside?
  • Offer to describe items or help to read labels.
  • Do you know how to use your induction loop, portable ramp and other access equipment?
  • Offer a seat to waiting customers.
  • Offer to rearrange furniture for people who need some space for example, wheelchair users, people with assistance dogs, buggies or mobility aids.
  • Turn any music down to improve communication.


  • Know your facilities and services - where is the nearest accessible toilet? Can you provide home visits, carry-to-car or delivery services? Are your menus, leaflets and information in a large and clear print?
  • Toilet, changing room or lift out of action? Let customers know. Make sure that your service and facilities information is online and up-to-date so visitors can plan ahead.
  • Do you use social media or websites – can you offer live updates? Save customers’ wasted journeys by forewarning them.

"47% of disabled customers surveyed said staff sttitude has discouraged them from revisiting certain establishments. Almost half of those surveyed would not go back to businesses with poor customer service." - Short-changed: The Trailblazers' High Streets report

Some disabled people require additional assistance or a companion when out and about. It’s great practice to offer free entry for a disabled person’s friend, family or personal assistant. Choose a system that’s fair, easy to use and works well for customers and staff.

< Experience in store: your premises
< Accessible goods and services - reasonable adjustments
< Every Customer Counts
Toilets and changing places >
Good practice videos

Good customer service and a common sense approach can often make all the difference for your disabled customers.

The videos below provide tips on etiquette when serving people with a range of disabilities.

Disability Etiquette


Positive experiences of customer services


The importance of attitude


Communicating with disabled customers


Treat all disabilities differently


Things to remember


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