How can I be guided safely during the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic?

Who can I be guided by?

If you need to go out for a walk or to access essential goods, there isn't an issue for you to be guided by a member of your household. If you do not have anyone within your household to guide you, the government guidance is to maintain a 2 metre distance, so guiding should be avoided where possible.

There are a series of instructional videos on the Guide Dog website covering the essentials of how to guide, that members of your household may find helpful.

We acknowledge this is difficult, but it is important that government guidance is adhered to during this time. RNIB will work with the government on developing further guidance and alternatives.

What if there is no one in my household who can guide me?

If you require a guide but there is no one in your household available to guide you, you could consider using a runner guide cable. These are used by many runners with sight loss so that they have distance between themselves and their running guides. This is attached to the wrist of both individuals and provides some distance. However, it's important to explore alternative options for exercise and accessing essential goods. Recommendations for essential goods are listed in the government's staying at home and away from others (social distancing) guidance.

In order to adhere to social distancing but have your needs met whilst out shopping you could ask a member of staff to collect the required items for you, providing them with a physical or verbal list to enable them to do this.

Guide Dogs have some tips on how you can make these restrictions work for you, including how to get your daily exercise and how to go food shopping. Further information can be found on the Guide Dogs website or call them or call their Covid-19 sight loss telephone information line on 0800 781 1444.

If you need further advice or support during this time, please call RNIB on 0303 123 9999 or visit the coronavirus (Covid-19) web pages, along with additional information for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

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