Bank of America California Pilot Press Release

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This document is the press release about the legal agreement between Bank of America and blind people. The press release announced the Bank’s first fifteen Talking ATMs. As of 2008 the bank had over 12,000 Talking ATMs. In the agreement described in this press release, the bank agreed to make its ATMs in California and Florida talk so blind people could use them. The bank also agreed to make its website accessible. It was the first time a bank agreed to put Talking ATMs in more than one state and the first time a bank agreed to make its website accessible. The document was negotiated by Lainey and Linda Dardarian. No lawsuit was filed. Instead, formal talks called Structured Negotiations were used. The California Council of the Blind and individual blind people in California were part of the negotiations. The Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund (DREDF) also worked on this issue. [Back to Press Release]

This press release, announcing Bank of America’s first 15 Talking ATMs, was issued as a result of the first Bank of America settlement agreement. The agreement was negotiated by Lainey and Linda Dardarian using Structured Negotiations on behalf of the California Council of the Blind (CCB) and several individual blind advocates. The Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund (DREDF) also represented the Claimants. As of early 2008, the bank has installed more than 11,000 Talking ATMs.

Simplified Summary of this Document

15 Bank of America ATMs Are Up and Talking in California

Bank of America Audio Jack San Francisco, CA (June 5, 2000) — Bank of America today announced that its first 15 talking ATMs, of the 1,600 the bank will put in California, are now operating. The first cities to receive the machines are: San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles, Sacramento, Westminster, Berkeley, Oakland, Woodland Hills and West Covina. (Exact locations are listed below.)

Talking ATMs provide audible instructions to persons who cannot view information on an ATM screen. These machines make it easier for blind users to withdraw cash, deposit money and perform other transactions. The ATMs have audio jacks that deliver spoken instructions privately to protect the security of blind and low-vision users.

Bank of America, in conjunction with the California Council of the Blind and several blind individuals, announced its decision in March to install talking ATMs at each ATM location throughout its national ATM network. Over the next three years, more than 2,500 talking ATMs will be installed in California and Florida — the first states to get the machines.

“In addition to serving our blind or low-vision customers with talking ATMs, we are striving to make printed information, such as bank statements available in alternative formats and we are working towards making our website accessible to persons with vision impairments,” said Bill Raymond, manager, ATM Channel Strategies and Development. “We consider these steps integral to our commitment to serving this community.”

“Today Bank of America continues its leadership role in providing accessible services to the blind community,” said Catherine Skivers, president, California Council of the Blind, an affiliate of the American Council of the Blind. “We congratulate Bank of America on bringing these talking ATMs on line so quickly.”

For more information about talking ATMs, customers may contact Bank of America at 1-800-ENABLEU for assistance.

Bank of America, with $656 billion in assets, is the largest bank in the United
States. It has full-service operations in 21 states and the District of Columbia and provides financial products and services to 30 million households and two million businesses, as well as providing international corporate financial services for business transactions in 190 countries.

First 15 Bank of America Talking ATM Locations

Berkeley Main, 2129 Shattuck Avenue

Los Angeles
Los Angeles Main, 525 South Flower Street
Los Angeles Civic Center, 100 S. Broadway

Oakland City Center, 500 12th St., Suite 117

Downtown Plaza, 547 L Street

San Diego
San Diego Airport East, 3665 N Harbor Drive-East Terrace
San Diego Airport West, 3707 N Harbor Drive-West Terrace
Mission Valley Center, 1640 Camino Del Rio North

San Francisco

Market-Van Ness, 1525 Market Street
Market-New Montgomery, 33 New Montgomery Street
Opera Plaza, 601 Van Ness Avenue
One Market Plaza, 45 Spear Street
West Covina
West Covina Fashion Plaza 2, 1200 West Covina Parkway

Westminster Mall, 9104 Westminster Mall

Woodland Hills
Woodland Hills Promenade, 6100 Topanga Canyon Blvd.

Reporters May Contact:

Ann DeFabio, Bank of America, 415-622-3516
[email omitted]

For California Council of the Blind:
Lainey Feingold, 1.510.848.8125
[email omitted]
Saperstein, Goldstein, Demchak & Baller (Linda Dardarian),
1.510.763.9800, [email omitted]