Braille electricity bill

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Stephanie Sergeant

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Oct 21, 2023, 5:16:25 AM10/21/23
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Hi folks,

 

Please can anyone recommend an energy supplier willing to send the bills in Braille?

 

I was with Bulb which worked really well, both for their website, and Braille bills.

However Octopus seem only able to manage large print.

I wondered what experience others have had.

I have of course repeatedly asked for Braille bills.

 

Kind Regards,

Steph

 

Matthew Horspool

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Oct 21, 2023, 5:45:27 AM10/21/23
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Hi Steph,
I am surprised Octopus don’t offer braille bills, as I have found them to be very conscientious about accessibility overall. Their frontline customer services are not as good as they used to be, though, so I’m not surprised you have ended up stuck in a loop! If you wanted to try to escalate it yourself, you could try either sm...@octopus.energy<mailto:sm...@octopus.energy> or gr...@octopus.energy<mailto:gr...@octopus.energy> – neither are exactly what you want, but they go through to smaller mailboxes, so there is a better chance of someone noticing that it needs proper intervention.
In the meantime, I realise it is not the answer you are looking for, but the bills they send by email work well for me. The summary in the body of the email is usually enough but if I do need more detail, the PDF attachment reads well with JAWS. I have consequently never thought to ask them for a braille bill, but I’ve sent an email to ask what the score is and I’ll see if I get the same response as you.
I was with E.On when I first moved into this house and they supplied bills in braille. I am sure the rest of the big six do too. Hopefully others will have more up-to-date information.
Best wishes,
Matthew
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Chris McMillan

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Oct 21, 2023, 5:50:28 AM10/21/23
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I would speak to Octopus directly, ,the chap you want is Greg Jackson. He’s the boss (the one who’s all over radio, and no doubt TV which I rarely watch).

He seems approachable. 

Chris
New email from Oct 2023 Chrismc...@gmail.com


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Chris McMillan

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Oct 21, 2023, 5:54:53 AM10/21/23
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Thanks Matthew.  I didn’t see you in my in box till I hit send.  

Maybe it’s time to see if “In Touch” would like to do a piece on accessibility now a few more companies have gone under.  Husband is a print user, my Braille is of the basic type.  

Chris


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Chris McMillan

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Oct 21, 2023, 5:58:40 AM10/21/23
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Here!   access...@octopus.energy.   Seems one only has to ask, they do talking ones too.

Chris

Braille Bills

We’ve put a lot of work into making sure our online experience is accessible to screen-reader software. Still, if you'd prefer to receive braille bills, please email access...@octopus.energy

Mary Lea

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Oct 21, 2023, 6:23:06 AM10/21/23
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Hi, where are you? Because, if you are in the UK, then RNIB offer transcription services to all businesses, and surely a company is breaking the law by not offering you bills in braille? 

Stephanie Sergeant

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Oct 21, 2023, 6:44:27 AM10/21/23
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Matthew Horspool

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Oct 21, 2023, 7:22:08 AM10/21/23
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Hi Chris and Mary,
Thanks Chris for the information. I didn’t realise they had an accessibility email address!
Mary, yes indeed, there is the RNIB commercial transcription centre and there are other companies which do it too – Pia, All Formats, A2I, Scottish Braille Press, Connect, Vision Support Trading and those are just the ones I can think of off the top of my head! A lot used to go to MPH, which got bought out by RNIB a few years ago.
I suspect you would probably win a court case if you sued a big company for not providing braille bills. However, I don’t know whether there is a specific legal or regulatory requirement for companies to provide braille. I would be interested in hearing from anyone who knows more about this area but from what I understand, we are back to this mirky area of “reasonable adjustment” and the problem with Octopus is that what qualifies as “reasonable” will have changed exponentially for them over the past few years. It wasn’t all that long ago that they were a small startup, and they’ve really only grown as large as they have because they have subsumed a handful of smaller and larger energy companies which have gone bust, Bulb being one of them.
When they started, a feature of their offering was that everything was online, including billing. It was virtually impossible to get a print bill from them, let alone a braille one, and if they were still there now I would actually support them not issuing braille bills because it would go against their philosophy of being paperless. The website is accessible, so are the PDF bills, the emails and the mobile app, so I would have thought they would have made all the reasonable adjustments they needed to make. I don’t take that view now because their acquisition of other companies has meant that they are having to produce more print bills, but I will cut them some slack because this won’t have been a conscious shift for them.
Hope that makes sense,
Matthew

From: brail...@googlegroups.com <brail...@googlegroups.com> On Behalf Of Mary Lea
Sent: Saturday, October 21, 2023 11:23 AM
To: Braillists Forum <brail...@googlegroups.com>
Subject: Re: Braillists Forum: RE: Braille electricity bill

Hi, where are you? Because, if you are in the UK, then RNIB offer transcription services to all businesses, and surely a company is breaking the law by not offering you bills in braille?

On Sat, 21 Oct 2023, 10:54 Chris McMillan, <chrismc...@gmail.com<mailto:chrismc...@gmail.com>> wrote:
Thanks Matthew. I didn’t see you in my in box till I hit send.

Maybe it’s time to see if “In Touch” would like to do a piece on accessibility now a few more companies have gone under. Husband is a print user, my Braille is of the basic type.

Chris


New email from Oct 2023 Chrismc...@gmail.com<mailto:Chrismc...@gmail.com>


On Sat, 21 Oct 2023 at 10:45, Matthew Horspool <matthew....@braillists.org<mailto:matthew....@braillists.org>> wrote:
Hi Steph,
I am surprised Octopus don’t offer braille bills, as I have found them to be very conscientious about accessibility overall. Their frontline customer services are not as good as they used to be, though, so I’m not surprised you have ended up stuck in a loop! If you wanted to try to escalate it yourself, you could try either sm...@octopus.energy<mailto:sm...@octopus.energy<mailto:sm...@octopus.energy>> or gr...@octopus.energy<mailto:gr...@octopus.energy<mailto:gr...@octopus.energy>> – neither are exactly what you want, but they go through to smaller mailboxes, so there is a better chance of someone noticing that it needs proper intervention.
In the meantime, I realise it is not the answer you are looking for, but the bills they send by email work well for me. The summary in the body of the email is usually enough but if I do need more detail, the PDF attachment reads well with JAWS. I have consequently never thought to ask them for a braille bill, but I’ve sent an email to ask what the score is and I’ll see if I get the same response as you.
I was with E.On when I first moved into this house and they supplied bills in braille. I am sure the rest of the big six do too. Hopefully others will have more up-to-date information.
Best wishes,
Matthew

From: brail...@googlegroups.com<mailto:brail...@googlegroups.com> <brail...@googlegroups.com<mailto:brail...@googlegroups.com>> On Behalf Of Stephanie Sergeant
Sent: Saturday, October 21, 2023 10:16 AM
To: Braillists Forum <brail...@googlegroups.com<mailto:brail...@googlegroups.com>>
Subject: Braillists Forum: Braille electricity bill

Hi folks,

Please can anyone recommend an energy supplier willing to send the bills in Braille?

I was with Bulb which worked really well, both for their website, and Braille bills.
However Octopus seem only able to manage large print.
I wondered what experience others have had.
I have of course repeatedly asked for Braille bills.

Kind Regards,
Steph

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Chris McMillan

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Oct 21, 2023, 1:09:23 PM10/21/23
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We moved to Octopus because our previous utility company had taken over the one we’d been with for some decades, and as said company weren’t attending to our need of a faulty smart meter, and we were planning to install solar panels and air source heat pump, Octopus were exactly who we wanted to deal with.  Had we been much younger than in our 70s, we’d have waited till they were also able to do more than a bog standard no frills, no complications installation, so as part of our due diligence we actively sourced installers who share their values.  I saw and noted the link as I was reading everything we could as Mike designed what he wanted to achieve.

Chris


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Fiona Dunn

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Oct 21, 2023, 5:51:08 PM10/21/23
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Hi everyone.

 

I get Braille bills from EDF and used to get them from E.On, or however they spell it. I was with Scottish Power for a short time and they were horrible! Never sent Braille bills and kept sending print letters asking me to read my metre, despite the fact I had told them I was blind when I first registered. I had enough and went back to E.on. When I moved into a flat in 2000, the provider there was Npower. They were really horrible! They said that, if I wanted Braille, I had to fill in a print form. I explained that this wouldn’t be possible and was told that was the procedure. I said their procedure stunk and went to Powergen, which became E.on.

 

Hopefully, Npower isn’t quite so awful these days but, whenever I needed to call them before I changed supplier, it was always a nightmare and I haven’t heard any good reports from anyone since.

 

So, I’d recommend E.On or EDF from personal experience for Braille bills and advise steering clear of Scottish Power and Npower if you want good service or common sense. They may come up cheaper on comparison sites but personally, the lack of stress is worth paying a bit more to me.

 

Fi

Chris McMillan

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Oct 21, 2023, 6:03:00 PM10/21/23
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New email from Oct 2023 Chrismc...@gmail.com

NPower sold out to EOn

Chris

Lynn Cox

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Oct 22, 2023, 5:58:15 AM10/22/23
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Hi

I also get Braille from EDF.

Love
Lynn


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