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People Are Praising Supermarkets' Little-Known Sunflower Lanyard Schemes That Helps Those With Invisible Disabilities

People Are Praising Supermarkets' Little-Known Sunflower Lanyard Schemes That Helps Those With Invisible Disabilities

A mother-of-four has praised supermarkets and airports that provide sunflower lanyards for those with invisible disabilities.

Cornwall-based Nikki Pearson ordered one of the speciality lanyards from Tesco for her son Harvey, who has autism, to "discreetly" make staff and fellow shoppers aware of his needs.

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Writing on Facebook on 30th July, she praised the supermarkets for the initiative and how it doesn't label people.

"Sharing this as the more people that know the better understanding everyone will have of invisible disabilities..." she penned on the post, which has been shared over 16,000 times.

"Sainsburys and Tesco and airports etc have been sending these out for free and staff are being trained so they are more aware if people need extra help or if a child is getting distressed etc to avoid ques and things. (sic)

Adding: "I love that its discreet and not labelling anyone, but it just makes people more aware that it may be why that person is struggling like Harvey screeching and kicking out in public. He isn't a naughty child he is just processing and seeing/hearing things we have no idea are even happening.

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"I love the idea so I have got him one so just sharing it so everyone that sees this post will know when there out and see someone struggling with one of these lanyards on there is a reason and they may need a bit of help or just dealing with things in a different way that your used to!"

The scheme has been available in Sainsbury's, Tesco and UK airports since February 2019.

Sainsbury's first piloted the scheme in February. Credit: PA
Sainsbury's first piloted the scheme in February. Credit: PA
Tesco has followed suit. Credit: PA
Tesco has followed suit. Credit: PA

The lanyard is available to collect for free in specific stores and are available for each customer with invisible illnesses, such as autism, dementia, visual or hearing impairment, to keep.

They can also be worn by individuals who need assistance reaching products, reading labels and finding suitable trolleys.

If wearing a lanyard, staff will give customers extra time to shop, pack their bags and at checkout. They might require staff to "speak face-to-face to allow lip reading or help with hard-to-reach products," states the Tesco website also.

The Barnstaple branch of Sainsbury's was the first store to test the initiative, following Gatwick Airport's successful launch, in which over 10,000 lanyards have been collected to date.

Aside from the two supermarket chains participating, airports in Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Edinburgh, Inverness, Manchester, the Shetlands as well as London City Airport and Heathrow are too involved with the schemes.

Nikki also revealed that the scheme has been picked up by, "several NHS trusts, cinema complexes, shopping centres, and recently LNER and Scotrail".

Credit: Pexels
Credit: Pexels

To find out more visit the Tesco website here and Sainsbury's site.

Featured Image Credit: Tesco

Topics: Life News, Real, sainsbury's, Tesco, Health

Lisa McLoughlin

Lisa is a freelance journalist working for Tyla and the team's token Dubliner. After graduating with a MA in PR and Digital Marketing from D.I.T., she worked for MailOnline, Sun Online, Irish Independent and broadcaster RTÉ. Got a story of interest or want advice on how to pour the perfect pint of Guinness? Then email her at [email protected]

 

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