This morning via facebook Suzie Jones received a recorded delivery letter from

One Call Insurance

rejecting her application for car insurance. She has been driving without an accident for 30 years but although the letter doesn’t clearly outline the reason Suzie says she has been rejected because she is Deaf.

In order to obtain a driving license you have to declare any ‘conditions’ to DVLA for approval. There are many Deaf people driving safely driving the roads.

Like most of us we apply for car insurance online. When you have to mention your Deafness or Disability that usually involves a phone call to the company to go through a health questionnaire despite it mostly being irelevant to your ability to drive.

All Suzie asked as part of the breakdown cover package was an SMS text number – how else is she to phone their breakdown service? It isn’t an unreasonable request many other car insurance offer this to their Deaf customers – not One Call Insurance. Suzie writes on twitter they ‘wouldn’t or couldn’t provide SMS breakdown service’.

Being Deaf is not a ‘medical condition’ as she writes in her complant – it doesn’t impair her ability to drive as a freelance consultant with her own consultancy company she clearly needs her car to work.

Under the Equalities Act 2010 any company offering services both online an in any premises must make reasonable adjustments and anticipate the needs of their customers. Clearly in this instance One Call Insurance don’t. Their website has no information on access.

Their website also directs complaints to be made by phoning in the first instance – not writing or via email but a phone call. The emphasis is on YOU to ensure  your claim is  ‘eligible’ under their Terms and Conditions. If you are not happy after you have phoned then you can write. Hardly a friendly or accessible customer service.

Suzie has posted a full outline of her complaint on Facebook. Support her and just maybe One Call Insurance will realise they are potentially loosing 20% of business due to their inaccessible policy and practice and change. With 1 in 5 people with some degree of Deafness that is a significant number of Deaf drivers on our roads. Oh and economically we are worth £80 billion a year.

Their strapline is ‘one call does it all’. It seems only as long as you are hearing…