Skip to main content

Social Exclusion by Retailers of People with Complex Communication Needs

Abstract

People with complex communication needs are frequently excluded from shopping independently by communication access barriers in the retail industry. In this pilot study, seven participants with CCN who use augmentative and alternative communication devices were interviewed about their perceptions of accessible communication and inclusion by retailers. Nine participants who provided retail customer service were interviewed about their experiences communicating with people with disability. Interview data was analysed using grounded theory method. An ecological model of social inclusion was applied to categories in the data to identify whether personal, organisational and structural conditions contributed to social exclusion. Recommendations for improvement in communication access included stronger communication between government and the retail industry about their responsibilities to people with complex communication needs, increased co-operative approaches, involving people with complex communication needs, training about communication access in the retail industry. This study forms a basis for further AAC research into social exclusion and the retail environment.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2

References

  1. Anderson, K., Balandin, S., & Clendon, S. (2011). "he cares about me and i care about him." Children's experiences of friendship with peers who use AAC. AAC: Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 27(2), 77–90. https://doi.org/10.3109/07434618.2011.577449.

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  2. Australian Government. (1992). Disability Discrimination Act 1992. Retrieved from https://www.legislation.gov.au/Details/C2017C00339

  3. Australian Human Rights Commission. (2012). About Disability Rights. Retrieved from https://www.humanrights.gov.au/our-work/disability-rights/about-disability-rights

  4. Australian Human Rights Commission. (2016). Access for all: Improving accessibility for customers with disability (2016). Retrieved from https://www.humanrights.gov.au/our-work/disability-rights/publications/access-all-improving-accessibility-consumers-disability-2016

  5. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (2003). Disability prevalence and trends. Canberra.

  6. Balandin, S., Berg, N., & Waller, A. (2006). Assessing the loneliness of older people with cerebral palsy. https://doi.org/10.1080/09638280500211759

    Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Bazeley, P., & Richards, L. (2000). The NVivo qualitative project book: London : SAGE, 2000.

  8. Belk, R. W. (1988). Possessions and the extended self. Journal of Consumer Research, 15(2), 139–168.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  9. Bigby, C., & Wiesel, I. (2011). Encounter as a dimension of social inclusion for people with intellectual disability: Beyond and between community presence and participation. Journal of Intellectual and Developmental Disability, 36(4), 259–263. https://doi.org/10.3109/13668250.2011.619166.

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  10. Charmaz, K. (2006). Constructing grounded theory: a practical guide through qualitative analysis: Sage Publications. https://www.eds.b.ebscohost.com/eds/results?vid=17&sid=05dbe7ad-1f72-4a3c-ac4b-75662398f323%40pdc-vsessmgr03&bquery=AU+Charmaz+Kathy+AND+constructing+grounded+theory%3a+a+practical+guide+through+qualitative+analysis&bdata=JmNsaTA9RlQxJmNsdjA9WSZhdXRodHlwZT1zc28mY3VzdGlkPWRlYWtpbiZ0eXBlPTEmc2VhcmNoTW9kZT1BbmQmc2l0ZT1lZ Accessed 23 Oct 2019.

  11. Collier, B., Blackstone, S. W., & Taylor, A. (2012). Communication access to businesses and organizations for people with complex communication needs. Augmentative And Alternative Communication (Baltimore, Md.: 1985), 28(4), 205-218.https://doi.org/10.3109/07434618.2012.732611.

  12. Cooper, L., Balandin, S., & Trembath, D. (2009). The loneliness experiences of Young adults with cerebral palsy who use alternative and augmentative communication. Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 25(3), 154–164. https://doi.org/10.1080/07434610903036785.

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  13. Corazza, M., & Dyer, J. (2017). A new model for inclusive sports? An evaluation of Participants' experiences of mixed ability Rugby (Vol. 5, pp. 130-140).

  14. Culham, A. (2003). Deconstructing normalisation: Clearing the way for inclusion *. Journal of Intellectual & Developmental Disability, 28(1), 1–1.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  15. Degener, T. (2017). 10 years of convention on the rights of persons with disabilities. Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights, 35(3), 152–157. https://doi.org/10.1177/0924051917722294.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  16. Fisher, K. R., & Purcal, C. (2017). Policies to change attitudes to people with disabilities. Scandinavian Journal of Disability Research, 19(2), 161–174. https://doi.org/10.1080/15017419.2016.1222303.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. Fraser, H. (2004). Doing narrative research analysing personal stories line by line. Qualitative Social Work, 3(2), 179–201.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  18. Hall, S. A. (2009). The social inclusion of people with disabilities: A qualitative meta-analysis. Journal of Ethnographic & Qualitative Research, 3(3), 162–173.

    Google Scholar 

  19. Howe, T. (2008). The ICF contextual factors related to speech-language pathology. International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 10(1–2), 27–37. https://doi.org/10.1080/14417040701774824.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  20. Levitas, R., Pantazis, C., Fahmy, E., Gordon, D., Lloyd, E., & Patsios, D. (2007). The multi-dimensional analysis of social exclusion.

  21. Light, J., & McNaughton, D. (2013). Putting people first: Re-thinking the role of Technology in Augmentative and Alternative Communication Intervention. Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 29(4), 299–309. https://doi.org/10.3109/07434618.2013.848935.

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  22. Light, J., & McNaughton, D. (2014). Communicative competence for individuals who require augmentative and alternative communication: A new definition for a new era of communication? Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 30(1), 1–18.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  23. Nussbaum, M. (2003). Capabilities as fundamental entitlements: Sen and social justice. Feminist Economics, 9(2–3), 33–59. https://doi.org/10.1080/1354570022000077926.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  24. Oliver, & Barnes, C. (2010). Disability studies, disabled people and the struggle for inclusion. British Journal of Sociology of Education, 31(5), 547–560. https://doi.org/10.1080/01425692.2010.500088.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  25. Østvik, J., Ytterhus, B., & Balandin, S. (2018). Gateways to friendships among students who use AAC in mainstream primary school. Scandinavian Journal of Disability Research, 20(1), 92–101. https://doi.org/10.16993/sjdr.51.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  26. Overmars-Marx, T., Thomese, F., & Meininger, H. (2019). Neighbourhood social inclusion from the perspective of people with intellectual disabilities: Relevant themes identified with the use of photovoice. Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities, 1, 82–93. https://doi.org/10.1111/jar.12511.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  27. Popay J., Escorel S., Hernández M., Johnston H., Mathieson J., Rispel L., (2008). Understanding and Tackling Social Exclusion. Retrieved from http://www.who.int/social_determinants/themes/social exclusion.en/.

  28. Saunders, P., Naidoo, Y., & Griffiths, M. (2008). Towards new indicators of disadvantage: Deprivation and social exclusion in Australia. Australian Journal of Social Issues (Australian Council of Social Service), 43(2), 175–194. https://doi.org/10.1002/j.1839-4655.2008.tb00097.x.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  29. Scope Australia. (2018). Communication Access. Retrieved from https://www.scopeaust.org.au/service/communication-access/

  30. Sen, A. K. (2000). Social exclusion: Concept, application and scrutiny. Retrieved from Manila, Philipinnes:

  31. Simplican, S. C., Leader, G., Kosciulek, J., & Leahy, M. (2015). Defining social inclusion of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities: An ecological model of social networks and community participation. Research in Developmental Disabilities, 38, 18–29. https://doi.org/10.1015/j.ridd.2014.10.008.

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  32. Sirgy, M. J. (1982). Self-concept in consumer behavior: A critical review. Journal of Consumer Research, 9, 287–300.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  33. Speech Pathology Australia. (2010). Productivity commission submission DR752, caring for older australians, public inquiry.

  34. Tan, B. S., Wilson, E., Campain, R., Murfitt, K., & Hagiliassis, N. (2019). Understanding negative attitudes toward disability to foster social inclusion: An Australian case study: Palgrave Macmillan.

  35. Taylor, S. E., Balandin, S., Wilson, E., & Murfitt, K. (2019). Customer service communication with customers with disability. Journal of Consumer Marketing, 36(1), 228–239. https://doi.org/10.1108/JCM-10-2017-2400.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  36. Tong, A., Sainsbury, P., & Craig, J. (2007). Consolidated criteria for reporting qualitative research (COREQ): A 32-item checklist for interviews and focus groups. International Journal for Quality in Health Care, 19(6), 349–357. https://doi.org/10.1093/intqhc/mzm042.

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  37. Trembath, D., Balandin, S., & Togher, L. (2009). Volunteering amongst persons who use augmentative and alternative communication. Journal of Intellectual and Developmental Disability, 34(1), 87–88. https://doi.org/10.1080/13668250802688330.

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  38. United Nations. (2006). Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Retrieved from https://www.un.org/development/desa/disabilities/convention-on-the-rights-of-persons-with-disabilities.html

  39. United Nations. (2011). Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. Retrieved from https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Publications/GuidingPrinciplesBusinessHR_EN.pdf

  40. Werner, S., & Hochman, Y. (2017). Social inclusion of individuals with intellectual disabilities in the military. Research in Developmental Disabilities, 65, 103–113. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ridd.2017.04.014.

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  41. Young, I. M. (1990). Justice and the politics of difference.

Download references

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Susan Taylor.

Ethics declarations

Conflict of Interest

The authors report no declarations of interest

Ethical Approval

This study was performed in line with the principles of the Declaration of Helsinki. Approval was granted by the Ethics Committee of Deakin University on 17 August 2016, No. HEAG-H141_2016.

Informed Consent

Informed consent to participate and to publish their data was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Additional information

Publisher’s Note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Appendices

Appendix 1: Questions For In-Depth Interviews With Participants With Complex Communication Needs

This research will help me to understand your experiences as a customer in shops, retail services like banks or hairdressers, in food outlets and so on. I want to know about good and bad experiences you may have had as a customer. I also want to know how you feel about being a customer in those types of places, and what impact your experiences have on you, if any. The questions below will be used as a guide in the interview.

Paragraph below to be added according to the type of interview:

(Face to face interviews) I may follow up on your answers to questions, to get a better understanding of what you’re telling me. If I am doubtful about what you tell me I will repeat what I think you’re saying and ask you to agree or disagree. I will record your stories as you tell them to me. We will pause for breaks during the interview or stop the interview at any time you need.

(Email interviews) After we get started I will type in a question and then wait for you to type in your response. Your response can be as long as you wish. I may follow up on your answers to each question, to get a better understanding of what you’re telling me. In this way we will move progressively through the main questions as listed below. If you need a break in the interview you must let me know so that we can stop. We can start again whenever you are ready, and the interview can take as long as you wish, even over many days. If at any stage you don’t wish to continue with the interview we can stop immediately.

  • Shopping is one of the ways many people spend their time, not only in shops but in services like hairdressers, and in food outlets. Some people enjoy it and some people only shop when they have to. What is your approach to shopping?

  • I would like to know what it’s like for people who use AAC to get served in a shop. Or what happens when you need the help of a bank teller. Or how you tell your hairdresser what you need. Tell me, how do you communicate with retailers?

  • • I also want to know how you feel in the places where you do your shopping. Thinking about your communication, what good experiences can you think of that you have had as a customer? What do you think contributed to you feeling good?

  • Thinking again about your communication, what bad experiences have you had as a customer? I’m interested to know what happened, how you dealt with the situation, and why you remember it as a bad experience.

  • Have your experiences changed anything about the way you go shopping or use other retail services, or changed where you go, and how often? Why?

Appendix 2: Questions for Retailers

Interviews with customer service staff will help us to understand what issues arise when you provide a service to customers with disabilities.

  • What is your experience of communicating with customers with disabilities, for instance people in wheelchairs, people who can't speak or people with little or no vision? How does it feel?

  • What difficulties, if any, do you experience in communicating with customers with disabilities?

  • How would you adjust your communication to communicate with customers who can’t speak?

  • How have you changed the way you communicate with customers with disabilities, if at all?

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Taylor, S., Wilson, E., Murfitt, K. et al. Social Exclusion by Retailers of People with Complex Communication Needs. J Dev Phys Disabil 33, 909–930 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10882-020-09778-2

Download citation

Keywords

  • Social exclusion
  • Complex communication needs
  • Retail
  • Shopping
  • Communication access
  • AAC