In an industry first, Brisbane-based Medicinal Cannabis company, Elevated Extracts, has introduced a Braille translation of its CBD Isolate and Whole Flower label, with plans to expand the initiative across its rapidly growing range.

The Braille translation is part of an initiative aimed at ensuring all Australian have the required information available, and feel welcome and included in the ever-evolving cannabis culture.  There are approximately 575,000 Australians who are vision impaired, however, it is estimated only one in 10 are fluent in Braille.  With such a relatively low uptake, one may wonder if the initiative is worth it.  The team at Elevated Extracts believe it is; hoping that the initiative helps amplify the “patient first” approach that is driving the medicinal cannabis sector.

 Co-Founder and Marketing Director, David Madigan, hopes the introduction of the double-sided A5 flyers have a trickle-down effect, encouraging more Australians to learn the artform.

“Much like the Auslan [Australian Sign Language] interpreters have raised awareness, interest and, in turn, uptake of the communication method, we hope to reignite the passion for Braille.” Madigan said.

There has been a steady decrease in the literacy of Braille, in no small part thanks to innovative smart technology, including:

  • Audiobooks
  • Voice-Recognition
  • Text-to-Voice

While these technologies have undoubtedly made life easier for the vision impaired, studies have shown that those who know Braille were more likely to attain higher education and be employed.

 As with most matters of inclusion, the survival and revival of Braille will require a combination of grass roots, tactical awareness from affected members of the community, along with the support of emerging industries and those who can reach the next generation.  Encouragingly, toy companies are embracing the direction with Braille Uno, Braille and low vision Monopoly, and braille LEGO now available. 

Want to support?  Vision Australia offers Grade I Braille courses for people with sight that teach participants how to read and/or write Braille with their eyes. This course is through correspondence and is available to residents throughout Australia; participants may commence at any time throughout the year.