Free White Cane Policy

The Wisconsin Council of the Blind & Visually Impaired is proud and privileged to be able to provide white canes to help blind and/or visually impaired residents of Wisconsin empower themselves. Any Wisconsin resident who is blind or visually impaired in need of a new white cane is eligible for one free cane every 24 months. Our program does not receive any publicly funded money; all of our canes are provided through generous donations to our White Cane Program.

There are two exceptions as to our 24-month policy:

  1. Those who are under the age of eighteen, or have not yet graduated from high school (but still under the age of 21), may be eligible to receive a free white cane, or when the student has a rapid growth spurt, making the current cane no longer an appropriate length. When this occurs, the student’s mobility instructor should send a recommendation to the Council requesting a new cane and its length.
  2. Individuals may be eligible to receive a replacement white cane at our discretion under special circumstances, such as a defective cane or damage to the cane that is not due to the user’s error.

New cane users are eligible to receive a backup cane at half the retail cost, if purchased within the first two years of receiving their first white cane.  Available canes include the Ambutech adjustable support cane, Ambutech folding mobility cane, and Ambutech folding ID cane.

Patrons are also allowed to use the allotted amount of a white cane towards other accessories, such as replacement tips, or white and red tape-items that are deemed beneficial for either identification or mobility purposes.

A person whose functional vision loss impairs safe movement through the environment is eligible for a cane. WCBVI reserves the right to request additional information about vision loss, such as a doctor’s certification of visual impairment or photo identification, if we feel our policy is being abused.

Donations are appreciated to cover the cost and continue the program for others.

You can view canes and accessories on our online Sharper Vision Store for purchase. 

Call 1-800-783-5213 or 608-255-1166 to check if you qualify for a free white cane.