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Strabane continues successful work towards becoming JAM Card Friendly

26 November 2019

Strabane Town Businesses have made a successful start to their bid to support people with a learning difficulty, autism or a communication barrier by becoming the first place in the UK and Ireland to become a JAM Card Friendly town.

Carriers of a JAM (Just A Minute) Card or app with communication difficulties can show it to trained members of staff at local businesses as a discrete and easy way of telling them they may have special requirements and may need a little extra time.

The initiative is part of Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Access and Inclusion project in partnership with the Public Health Agency.

Gadget Garage is the first business in Strabane to sign staff up to the JAM card training.

"Jam Card training has further equipped our staff with the knowledge they need to tailor every customer interaction according to our customer's needs,” said a spokesperson for Garget Garage.

“The training compliments our Dementia friendly training in the hope we can create a friendly, accessible and inclusive shopping environment for all".

Louise Boyce DCSDC Access and Inclusion Coordinator explained: “JAM card training provides an accessible platform and recognition for local businesses to promote that they are equipped to support people with communication barriers; that they are open to business with everyone and promote their business as an accessible one.

“Free JAM Card training is available for all Strabane town businesses involved with BIDs, and is implemented through e-learning.

“There are 15 questions on the online training which creates awareness for customer facing staff to further support people with communication barriers, such as brain injury, dementia or autism."

Over 300 staff members in Strabane businesses have already completed the training which Louise said sent out a clear message that people of all abilities can visit with confidence.  

“What has been very evident is the commitment of local businesses in Strabane to their customer base and their already strong understanding of many different needs of their customers,” she added.

“What JAM Card training is doing is giving recognition to Strabane town businesses and promoting inclusion for some of our pan disability community to have the confidence to shop, eat and visit Strabane town.

Due to the demand and success of the initiative the deadline has been extended to Wednesday 4th December 2019 and as part of DCSDC's Celebration of People with Disabilities Week Monday 2nd- Friday 6th December 2019, there will be a celebration event in The Alley Theatre on Thursday 5th December at 2.00pm where all businesses are welcome to receive their marketing material  after the completion of the JAM Card Friendly training.

For further information on Strabane JAM Card Friendly Town contact: [email protected] or ring 02871 253 253 Ext:4349.