A national credit card company has agreed to do a better job serving customers who are blind or deaf after it told a vision-impaired New Yorker she had to complete a written form to dispute a charge, according to the Associated Press.
New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo announced the agreement Tuesday with HSBC Card Services Inc. The company will make several changes in customer service and on its Web site to help customers with vision or hearing loss or other disabilities challenge charges on their accounts. The company has millions of customers nationwide, but there was no figure on how many are disabled. Cuomo’s investigation into the issue throughout the industry continues.
Barbara Ruel of East Aurora, 71, who is confined to her suburban Buffalo home because of a sensitivity to chemicals as well as vision and hearing impairments, remembers the sense of outrage that drove her to launch the case.
She had used her credit card to buy a household item costing a couple of hundred dollars, but it never arrived. So she contacted HSBC, asking its customer service staff to fill in the required form with her answers. She was told they didn’t do that. She says two of the workers said they hadn’t even heard of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which requires that sort of accommodation.