Greene King is proud to announce a roll-out of new signage outside all accessible toilets across its estate to remind customers that not every disability is visible.

Greene King is proud to announce a roll-out of new signage outside all accessible toilets across its estate to remind customers that not every disability is visible.

The move follows consultation with the charities Crohn’s & Colitis UK and SeeAbility and aims to help educate people and raise awareness of those with invisible disabilities. From next month, Greene King will begin its rollout of new accessible toilet signage for 1,700 Greene King pubs, offices and distributions centres.  

While someone with Crohn’s or Colitis may look ‘okay’ on the outside, they may crucially need to use the accessible toilets, due to symptoms such as urgent and frequent diarrhoea. According to Crohn’s & Colitis UK, half of people with Crohn’s or Colitis have received negative comments for using accessible toilets and 29% have been refused entry to an accessible toilet because their disease isn’t visible.

There are many different kinds of learning disabilities all of which may affect how someone sees, hears or understands the world around them. According to SeeAbility, over a million adults in the UK have learning disabilities, and one in ten has a serious sight problem, so being able to identify and use the accessible toilets is incredibly important.

Nick Mackenzie, Greene King chief executive, said: “We know that many of our customers have disabilities that aren’t always visible, and we want them to feel comfortable using the disabled toilets.  We also hope that by working with Crohn’s & Colitis UK and SeeAbility that these new signs will help voice awareness and stop the sigma and discrimination of people with hidden health conditions.”

Sarah Hollobone, Campaigns Manager, Crohn’s & Colitis UK, said: “On behalf of everyone with Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis, we want to say a big thank you to Greene King for supporting our Not Every Disability is Visible campaign. By putting new accessible toilet signs in their pubs Greene King are helping people with Crohn’s and Colitis, and other invisible conditions, feel more confident and comfortable when out and importantly, they’re helping challenge the outdated perception that you have to look physically disabled on the outside to have a real and urgent need to use an accessible toilet.”

Lisa Hopkins, CEO of SeeAbility said: “SeeAbility’s ambition is to make inclusion a reality for children and adults with learning disabilities and autism. This starts with ensuring our communities have welcoming spaces for everyone. We are delighted to have collaborated with some of the people SeeAbility supports, to feedback on designs for the new signage and welcome Greene King’s response in taking this important step forward.”

Greene King consulted with SeeAbiltiy and Crohn’s & Colitis UK to ensure that the new assessable toilet signs would help those living with invisible disabilities feel at ease using pub toilets. The new sign also includes descriptive braille writing. 

To find your nearest Greene King pub, visit www.greeneking.co.uk/pub-finder/