The Bank of Italy recently published a remarkable book about banknotes, specifically produced for visually impaired people, which was made available to the national central banks in the EU.
The Central Bank of Malta took up this ‘roadshow’ offer and was able to show the book to the Society of the Blind. The reaction was so positive – and the demand for it by the Society members so great – that the Bank has ordered a copy which will be kept at its Library for various outreach opportunities. The Bank will notify the public when it arrives.
The Banknote of the Senses: touch with your eyes, look with your hands allows people not only to recognise the security features of the banknotes but also to know more about the overall design characteristics of banknotes. The book, the first of its kind on the topic, combines printed and Braille text with raised illustrations.
John Gafà, the Society’s secretary, described the book as an arts and educational masterpiece. He said “that persons who have been blind for so many years experienced for the first time the ‘€’ emblem and much more about our monetary system”. The Society has 75 registered members but also gives support to many others who seek their help.
There were 1,626 people with an impairment related to sight registered with the Commission for the Rights of Persons with a Disability at the end of December 2019.