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Nick Brown with a Welcoming Business sticker

Welcoming Businesses are for everyone

News Article Date: 
Friday, 11 September 2020

Council's Welcoming Business Program works with businesses to make it as easy as possible for everyone to use their services and ultimately, attract, serve and retain more customers.

About one in five people living in Warrnambool has some form of disability.

This number is even higher when you consider people with temporary disabilities or other special access requirements, such as parents with prams.

A Welcoming Business is a business that is committed to ensuring safe and easy access for everyone, including older people and people with disabilities and is endorsed by Warrnambool City Council’s Welcoming Businesses Program.

Endorsed Welcoming Businesses satisfy a set of minimum standards relating to physical access, communication and customer service.

They are given a sticker to display in their window to help make them easily identifiable to potential customers.

Brown’s Depot Bakery owner Nick Brown said that as a business owner, failing to make your business accessible for everyone could not only cost you a single sale, but that person’s regular business too.

“Especially as a small business you have to cater for everybody. You can’t afford to turn anyone away, especially during these times,” he said.

“It’s about getting people in the door, providing a good service, and getting them to come back.”

He said that while physical infrastructure such as an entrance ramp, low counters, open floor space and an accessible toilet played a big part, the attitude of staff was also important.

“I think Brown’s is especially known for the staff and the customer service and we’re certainly accommodating for whoever comes in,” he said.

“All our staff work hard not to exclude anyone. It just comes down to customer service. You just try and give all customers good service, whatever they need.”

For more information on becoming a Welcoming Business visit www.warrnambool.vic.gov.au/welcoming-business

 

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