Visually Impaired People Day
In Germany, the 6th of June is observed as Visually Impaired People Day. This day is designed to raise public awareness about the challenges that people with vision impairment or loss face daily. It also advocates for incentives and programs that provide more access for people with visual difficulties or blindness.
In Germany, there are over a million people who are dealing with some type of visual impairment, and around the world, approximately 285 million people are visually impaired. That’s why everyone needs to take the time to observe this holiday when it rolls around every June.
The History of Visually Impaired People Day
This day was first created by the DBSV in 1998. The DBSV is the German Federation of the Blind and Partially Sighted, an organization that has been in existence since 1912.
It created this holiday to allow sighted and visually impaired people to come together and have an honest conversation about blindness and visual impairment, and what society can do to improve conditions for them.
Important Facts About Visual Impairment & Blindness
Below are several facts that we’ve learned while writing up this holiday. We think that everyone should take the time to familiarize themselves with the following facts, so they can educate themselves on the subject and understand how important it is for all of us to advocate for people with visual disabilities.
- In the U.S., approximately 12 million people aged 40 and older have a vision impairment.
- An estimated 94 million Americans are at high risk of developing serious vision loss.
- In Germany, approximately 80,000 to half a million people are blind, and approximately one million people are visually impaired.
- Only about a third of blind and visually impaired people in Germany hold a salaried job.
- The German Federation of the Blind and Partially Sighted represents 500,000 visually impaired people and 155,000 blind people.
Observing Visually Impaired People Day
During this day, everyone can come together to find solutions to the problems that blind and visually impaired individuals face daily. Sighted people can also work to advocate on behalf of blind individuals so that they can lead as normal a life as possible. People can also spread the news about this day using the hashtag #VisuallyImpairedPeopleDay on social media.