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Like many people with disabilities, those who are vision impaired are capable of feats beyond what their limitations might suggest. Members of the blind and vision impaired community can support themselves and their families by working in a wide range of career fields in which they can best use their individual talents, knowledge and skill.
Blind and visually impaired people can find meaningful work in administrative roles such as executive assistant, secretary or office clerk. An employer can work with a blind employee to assess her specific needs in order to accommodate her specific disability. Such accommodations may include getting an optical character reader or text magnifier to help a legally blind person read text on a computer. These accommodations will also help the employee better carry out the necessary tasks of her administrative position.
Careers in Human Resources
Blind people can be valuable assets in many of the various aspects of human resources. For instance, a human resources consultant position can be adapted for a blind person by procuring screen reader software to help with computer work. Screen readers are a type of software that use a speech synthesizer to allow blind or visually impaired people to read text on a computer screen. The screen reader interfaces between the blind employee and the computer's applications and desktop, allowing the individual to better utilize the device.
Customer Service Jobs
For blind people who enjoy working with others, a career in customer service may be exceptionally rewarding. Customer service jobs rely heavily on interacting with clients and resolving their needs through effective communication. Call centers in particular can be readily adapted to fit the needs of blind employees. Specific accommodations such as magnified monitor screens can help a legally blind individual read and type information on a computer more easily, allowing him to focus on delivering exceptional customer service to his organization's clients.
Pursuing a Career in Politics
Blind and visually impaired people can also achieve career success in the political arena. Governor David Paterson proved this when he was elected the first blind governor of New York in 2008. Prior to becoming the chief executive of the state of New York, Paterson was a valued member of the American Foundation for the Blind's board of trustees for nine years. The accommodations necessary for a blind politician can vary, and may include having a secretary to help the politician with moving around or reading documents.
- American Foundation for the Blind: Screen Readers
- American Foundation for the Blind: Paterson To Make History Again by Becoming the First Legally Blind Governor of New York
- Goodwill New York & New Jersey: Legally Blind Job Seekers Answer the Call
- World Health Organization: Visual Impairment and Blindness
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