This scheme is an initiative designed to act as a discreet sign that somebody has a hidden disability and requires additional assistance while out in public.

It is being successfully introduced to several major UK airports, supermarkets, railway stations and sports venues.

Sainsbury’s has been the first supermarket to trial the scheme with 40 stores. Tesco is also trialing the scheme in 15 Hertfordshire stores.

In addition, they are beginning to be recognised at international airports, cinemas, shopping centres and several NHS Trusts.

The types of hidden disabilities that are eligible for a sunflower lanyard include:

  • autism and Asperger’s
  • learning disabilities
  • dementia
  • mobility issues (e.g. arthritis, MS, ME, chronic illness, hidden prosthetics)
  • visual or hearing impairments.

If you’re wearing a lanyard, staff can offer you help but won’t know what your individual disability and needs are. Just let them know what they can do.

The support that can be provided with a lanyard includes:

  • more time at the checkout
  • packing your bags
  • speaking face-to-face to allow lip reading
  • using clear and easy-to-understand language
  • help with hard-to-reach products
  • making others aware a person may be struggling or have behavioral issues.

Go to this link for full details about the lanyard and how to get one or visit the Hidden Disabilities website.