Join us Support us

‘Campaigns’ Category

18 DecConsultation – BSL access 999 emergency

The regulator, Ofcom, have published a consultation setting out the case for the 999 emergency service phone line to be contactable in BSL.

Ofcom want feedback on
  • the need for BSL access to 999; and
  • to understand how the deaf community wants the service to work

Three BSL videos are available on the Ofcom Website and can be viewed here or you can read a transcript (PDF, 209.1 KB) of the three videos.

Details of how to respond back to Ofcom are also available on their website.

What UKCoD are doing 

To put pressure on Ofcom we need to demonstrate the barriers deaf people face. We need to show why text based solutions don’t work for BSL users. 

To gather this information, UKCoD have recently created a Facebook Group called BSL access 999 emergency

What can you do

  • Join the BSL access 999 emergency Group; and
  • Share your experience of access 999 – or your fears about having to access emergency services via a text service
  • Explain how access in BSL to the fire, police and ambulance would help

If you don’t have a facebook account or wish to share something in private 

Please e-mail us at campaigns.email@hearingloss.org.uk – this will not be made public without your clear permission.

See Full details on our Facebook page.

15 Jun30 June Parliamentary debate on deafness and hearing loss

APPG-logo-PORTCULLISThe APPG on Deafness, chaired by Jim Fitzpatrick MP, has secured a 90 minute debate on deafness and hearing loss in Westminster Hall at 3pm on Thursday 30 June.

Please tell the MPs you know about the debate, and encourage them to attend and speak. This is a great opportunity for us to make sure the government is aware of the range of issues faced by people who are deaf or have a hearing loss.

The motion for the debate is “that this House has considered the NHS England Action Plan on Hearing Loss and the new adult hearing service commissioning framework”. The framework is due to be published soon.

The debate will also be an opportunity to discuss issues of deafness and hearing loss in general, such as support into education and employment, and access for sign language users. For example, the Life Chances Strategy launched by the Prime Minister in January 2016 talked about the importance of support for families, education, and health and social care in supporting self reliance. Deaf people still face many barriers to accessing these services.

We are preparing a briefing for MPs ahead of the debate. While we know our members will be preparing their own, please feel free to tell us what you think should be included.

 

11 MayNDCS launch new campaign report, Right from the Start

Right from the Start campaign banner

The report celebrates 10 years of newborn hearing screening in England and calls on the Government, local authorities and health bodies to work together and make a commitment to ensure high quality support is in place as soon as a child is diagnosed as deaf.

It makes five broad recommendations:

  • Action is taken to protect and invest in paediatric audiology services and support them to become accredited under the Improving Quality in Physiological diagnostic Services (IQIPS) programme.
  • The Government and local authorities continue to protect funding for specialist education services for deaf children.
  • Local authorities review the provision of support with communication available to families in their area to ensure that the varying needs of families can be met at any one time.
  • Local authorities ensure that radio aids are more readily available to parents of deaf children so that they can support their child’s spoken language and communication development.
  • The Government should take action to ensure there is sufficient and effective provision across all local authorities for specialist childcare provision for deaf children, and that mainstream staff receive the training and advice they need to effectively include deaf children. This should include action to support parents with transport costs and to improve the listening environments of childcare settings.

Download the Report (pdf)

Full details about the Campaign Report can be found on the NDCS website here.

16 DecDWP piloting online access to Access to Work

dwpThe Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is looking for new deaf and deafblind applicants to help it pilot its online application system for Access to Work

DWP believes deaf and deafblind people will particularly benefit from the new online service. They will appreciate UK Council on Deafness members advising new deaf applicants to email ATW.DIGITALFIRSTCONTACT@DWP.GSI.GOV.UK saying they want to make an online application.

The applicant then be sent a unique link that will take them to the online form. By gathering more  information at the start, DWP expects the system to reduce the time it takes to make an award.

The online system is one of the improvements our Access to Work special interest group lobbied for during its negotiations with DWP over the past two years. Other improvements that have been or are being made include being able to contact Access to Work via email, the introduction of personal budgets, and guidance for individuals in BSL and English.

Following the pilot, the online application system will be launched nationally. We hope it will lead to the development of an online portal through which people can manage their Access to Work award.

04 JunCampaign – Subtitles for Video on Demand

Last year we held a conference together with Sense and Action on Hearing Loss.  A big topic of discussion at the event was the political landscape and the Government’s pledge to consider legislation on subtitles for Video on Demand content in 2016 “if it is clear that progress isn’t being made”.

Consensus emerged at the conference that we should work together to define what we would see as ‘progress’ by 2016. In the months following the conference RNIB, Sense and Action on Hearing Loss have worked together to develop a ‘Defining progress’ document.  The document can be viewed here 

This document has now been shared with a range of contacts including broadcasters and the Department for Culture Media and Sport.

Please urge the Government to act

Now the dust has settled after the general election we know that Ed Vaizey will be retaining his post as Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy. It is important that we remind him of his Department’s promise to review legislation in 2016, and urge him to adopt the progress target for broadcaster that we have identified.

Subtitle it Logo.jpg

Action on Hearing Loss has developed a simple campaign action that you can use to email Ed Vaizey about this issue.

Please take action here.

Please share with your colleagues