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I told them that I was completely deaf and that my speech is not understood by hearing people, so that it had been impossible for me to answer the call from Barclaycard Fraud Department.I copied the letter to The Times Troubleshooter Column, who had helped me before when I faced a similar scenario.
I posted about my bank problem, complaining that the letter from the customer manager at Barclaycard didn’t move things forward.
Des contacted me via Facebook and offered me help with my second letter to Barclaycard.
It’s our aim to make banking easy and accessible for all of our customers regardless of any disability.
To help our deaf customers manage their accounts we offer a Text Relay telephone service, the option to speak with a professional sign language interpreter in one of our branches, online secure messaging, and email access to our customer services team.
Troubleshooter must have copied the letter to their contact at Barclaycard because I got two replies – a fob-off from the complaints department, and a more helpful reply from a Senior Customer Relationship Manager at Barclaycard.
She stated that the way my case had been handled was completely unacceptable and that Barclaycard welcomed calls via Text Relay from its deaf customers.In other words, answer my mobile phone and speak to the person on the other end.On 8 June I wrote a letter of complaint to Barclaycard which explained what had happened.I tried to phone Barclaycard using Text Relay but couldn’t get an operator.This is a scenario not unfamiliar to many frustrated users of the service.It seemed that the banks over-relied on Text Relay, lacking awareness that the use of Text Relay would require a textphone plugged into a telephone socket.