St David’s Marks Purple Tuesday

St David’s Dewi Sant Cardiff is celebrating Purple Tuesday on 7th November, helping to raise awareness of sensory and accessibility issues. 

Purple Tuesday is an annual initiative which looks to improve the customer experience for disabled people and their families year-round. Participating organisations must make a commitment to greater inclusion and accessibility, to ensure a positive experience for all visitors. 

St David’s will be marking the date with a variety of events on Tuesday 7th November, including a jobs fair hosted by Maximus with disability-confident employers in attendance including Tesco, EE, Rubicon, and more. Local charities such as Guide Dogs and Autistic Minds will also be located on the centre mall offering information and support to visitors. 

The centre is also unveiling its new stoma-friendly upgrades to its toilets, providing a safe, clean, and helpful space for bags to be changed and making the centre more accessible to those with additional needs. The new facilities follow Colostomy UK guidelines and include wall hooks, lipped shelving, and full-length mirrors. 

Finally, St David’s is also launching its sensory backpacks on Purple Tuesday: a new offering for guests to use during their visit to the centre, filled with ear defenders, sensory toys, and information to help guests with additional needs enjoy their visit to St David’s. The sensory backpacks can be collected from the Guest Services Desk. 

St David’s is dedicated to continuously improving inclusivity and accessibility for all visitors year-round, with facilities and schemes including: 

  • St David’s staff are undertaking Disability Confident training, a government scheme aiming to change behaviour and culture to better understand disability and increase inclusion and diversity.
  • The centre’s Calm and Safe Space, developed alongside Autistic Minds and featuring Human-Centric Lighting designed to work with the circadian rhythm of our bodies and a variety of seating and sensory toys, created to offer people with sensory-processing differences a place to rest. 
  • Quiet Hour every Tuesday from 2pm – 3pm. Between these times, the centre and retailers reduce noise for those who prefer a calmer shopping environment without music, product demonstrations or mall activity.
  • New inclusive name badges for staff are soon to be rolled out throughout the centre, created with help from Diverse Cymru, using colours that are easier to read for those with visual impairments and featuring braille and language flag icons. 
  • Wheelchair and mobility scooter hire to ensure guests with mobility issues can enjoy their visit.
  • Guide for Autistic Guests, created alongside Autistic Minds, which includes information about the centre including facilities and busiest times, aiming to help autistic guests feel more comfortable when visiting.
  • Free sensory toys and hidden disability lanyards which can be collected from St David’s Guest Services Desk.

Helen Morgan, Centre Director at St David’s, said: “There are estimated to be 16 million people in the UK with some form of disability, almost a quarter of the population, and around 80% of disabled people have hidden impairments. 

“It’s really important for us that anyone with additional needs feels welcome and supported at our centre, and we’re keen to understand what we can do to improve our visitors’ experience.  

“A trip to the shop may seem straightforward for some of us, but can present difficulties for others in ways we might not immediately think of. It’s important that we consider and remove these barriers wherever possible.”

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