Ithmaar Bank launches additional new services for customers with special needs

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Ithmaar Bank, a Bahrain-based Islamic retail bank, announced today (ed note: 24/01/17) that it has introduced additional new services at its Main Branch for customers with special needs.

Abdul Hakeem Al Mutawa

The new services, which were introduced before the end of last year on the request of the Central Bank of Bahrain, the Kingdom’s banking and financial services regulator, include adapting the Automated Teller Machine (ATM) to offer voice-guided sessions for cash withdrawals, balance enquiries and Personal Identification (PIN) changes. The ATM height was also lowered to provide easier access from a wheel chair. Ithmaar Bank also assigned a dedicated, clearly-marked desk to serve customers with special needs on a priority basis; created new Braille forms for visually impaired customers; and adapted existing procedures to further improve their Islamic banking experience. The Bank also assigned employees to special training courses – including sign language for banking terms – so they may better serve customers with special needs.

“As a pioneering Islamic retail bank, Ithmaar Bank has long recognised the important role we must play in serving our local community,” said Ithmaar Bank General Manager, Banking Group, Abdulhakeem Al Mutawa. “Although we offer all our products and services to all customers without discrimination, we have always gone that extra mile in supporting those who require additional assistance,” he said.

“We have always, for example, had dedicated, clearly-marked parking facilities for customers with special needs at our Main Branch, and both the Branch and the ATM were designed to be wheelchair accessible,” said Al Mutawa. “Dedicated Ithmaar Bank employees with special training provide immediate service to customers with special needs, such as those with visual, hearing or other physical impairments. This is in addition, of course, to the fact that all Ithmaar Bank branches are designed to offer suitable waiting areas for all customers, including disabled and senior citizens.” he said.

“As a long-standing rule, all transactions of customers with visual impairments have always been conducted in the presence of the customer’s representative, as well as two Ithmaar Bank employees to ensure the customer’s security,” said Al Mutawa.

“Ithmaar Bank is committed to becoming the Islamic bank of choice in Bahrain,” said Al Mutawa. “With the guidance and support of the CBB, we will continue to work towards improving our products and services so we can better serve all Bahrain’s people – including those with special needs,” he said.