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‘Common Purpose’ Category

04 NovThe outcome of Common Purpose Conference

Press Release – 4 November 2016

Craig Crowley

Craig Crowley MBE, chief executive of Action Deafness, was appointed chair of the UK Council on Deafness at its AGM on 2 November. Craig succeeds Jim Edwards, who took up the position in 2010.

The AGM was part of the Council’s annual conference, which this year celebrated the power of collaboration. Groups of presenters explained how their cooperation had brought about benefits for people who are deaf or have a hearing loss.

Jim Edwards said: “I am delighted to announce Craig is the new chair of the Council. His appointment comes at an exciting time, with the sector working more collaboratively than ever before. His involvement with the initiative to define a common purpose means he is well placed to take up the reins.”

Craig said: “Jim’s six year stewardship of the Council is much appreciated. In particular, he made sure we kept challenging ourselves. The Board and I look forward to continuing what he worked so hard to begin.”


 View Presentations (pdfs)

Prevention and Early Intervention
Common Purpose

24 JunCall for nationwide public health campaign

We have today sent a briefing to MPs calling for the Government to work towards a nationwide public health campaign on deafness and hearing loss.

We have prepared the briefing for the Parliamentary debate next week on the NHS Action Plan on Hearing Loss [PDF] and the adult hearing service commissioning framework

The debate was called by Jim Fitzpatrick MP, the chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Deafness. It is at 3pm on Thursday 30 June in Westminster Hall.

Jim Edwards, chair of the UK Council on Deafness, said: “After much discussion with our members, we are agreed a nationwide public health campaign is in all our interests.

“The idea was first suggested by the common purpose awareness mission group. It was then endorsed by the common purpose steering group, our Board, the Hearing Loss and Deafness Alliance, and our members who regularly attend APPG meetings.

“The common thread in all the things we are working on is the need for greater awareness. The public needs a better understanding of the impact of deafness and hearing loss. People who are deaf or have a hearing loss need better awareness of the services and other support available to them, and their rights. Hearing people need better awareness of how to protect their hearing and what to do if they start to experience a hearing loss. And government needs a better understanding of the impact of its policies on people who are deaf or have a hearing loss.

“A campaign will encourage people to take control of their life by having their hearing tested by their GP or provider of audiology services. It will urge them not to let deafness and hearing loss become a barrier to them being involved in education, employment, politics, community activity – all elements of society.

“And all our members will be able to use the campaign as a springboard, whether they are focused on increasing the number of lipspeaking classes, equal access for sign language users, or helping more deaf young people benefit from cochlear implants.

“We know there are challenges ahead. Public health budgets have been devolved and there are many competing health priorities. But the number of people who are deaf or have a hearing loss is in the millions and constantly rising. The NHS England Action Plan on Hearing Loss recognises the enormous personal, social and economic impact of untreated hearing loss. And The Ear Foundation estimates that economic cost to be £30bn a year.

“So if we stay committed to our common purpose and work together, it’s definitely something we can achieve.”

Download the briefing [RTF]

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.


17 NovSignatories to the statement of common purpose on deafness and hearing loss

The organisations listed below are committed to the statement of common purpose on deafness and hearing loss. Any organisation concerned with deafness or hearing loss may join us as a signatory.

  1. Access Bedford
  2. Action Deafness
  3. Action for Deafness
  4. Action on Hearing Loss
  5. appa
  6. All Party Parliamentary Group on Deafness, UK Parliament
  7. Association of Deaf Education Professionals and Trainees
  8. Association of Lipspeakers
  9. Association of Sign Language Interpreters
  10. Association of Teachers of Lipreading to Adults
  11. Association of Verbatim Speech to Text Reporters
  12. Auditory Verbal UK
  13. BID Services
  14. Boots Hearingcare
  15. Brian Archbold
  16. British Academy of Audiology
  17. British Association of Teachers of the Deaf
  18. British Deaf Association
  19. British Society of Audiology
  20. British Society of Hearing Aid Audiologists
  21. Cambridgeshire Hearing Help
  22. Chief Officers’ Group of Third Sector Deaf Organisations
  23. Clarion Interpreting
  24. Cochlear Implanted Children’s Support Group
  25. Connevans Limited
  26. Cross Party Group on Deafness, Scottish Parliament
  27. Cumbria DeafVision
  28. Deaf Direct
  29. Deaf Education through Listening and Talking
  30. Deaf Hub
  31. Deaf Umbrella
  32. Deafblind UK
  33. Deafconnect
  34. Deafness Cognition and Language Research Centre, University College London
  35. Deafness Support Network
  36. deafPlus
  37. DEAFvibe
  38. Department of Languages and Intercultural Studies, Heriot Watt University
  39. The Ear Foundation
  40. Exeter Royal Academy for Deaf Education
  41. Gloria McGregor –
  42. Gloucestershire Deaf Association
  43. Gwen Carr
  44. HearFirst
  45. The Hearing Care Centre Ltd
  46. Hearing Dogs for Deaf People
  47. Hearing Link
  48. Hearing Loss and Deafness Alliance
  49. Hertfordshire Hearing Advisory Service
  50. Home Counties Cochlear Implant Group
  51. Jackie Baillie MSP
  52. Jane Cordell
  53. Jim Fitzpatrick MP
  54. Louise Tonks
  55. Manchester City Council
  56. Manchester Deaf Centre
  57. Microlink
  58. National Association of Deafened People
  59. National Cochlear Implant Users Association
  60. National Community Hearing Association
  61. National Deaf Children’s Society
  62. National Sensory Impairment Partnership
  63. NHS Grampian
  64. NHS Health Scotland
  65. Nottinghamshire Deaf Society
  66. Phonak UK
  67. Reablement Team, Social Services, Southampton City Council
  68. Royal Association for Deaf People
  69. Scottish Council on Deafness
  70. Sense
  71. Sign Language Interactions
  72. Sign Solutions
  73. Signature
  74. SignHealth
  75. SignLive
  76. SignVideo
  77. Social Research with Deaf People, University of Manchester
  78. South Wales Cochlear Implant Support Group
  79. Specsavers
  80. StageTEXT
  81. UK Deaf Sport
  82. UK Hearing Care
  83. University of Southampton Auditory Implant Service
  84. Visual Language Professionals
  85. Your Local Cinema .com
  86. Zebra Uno

18 SepSector celebrates passing of BSL (Scotland) Bill

British Sign Language (BSL) has been recognised as a language in law for the first time with the passing of the BSL (Scotland) Bill.

The Bill requires the Scottish Ministers to “promote, and facilitate the promotion of, the use and understanding of the language known as British Sign Language”.

The Bill, introduced by Mark Griffin MSP, is the result of years of campaigning by deaf and deafblind people.

There were cheers from the gallery as MSPs passed the Bill unanimously. Presiding Officer Tricia Marwick took the unprecedented step of thanking Mark Griffin, the parliamentary staff and all the interpreters for their fantastic work.

Craig Crowley, chair of the task force that helped the sector find a statement of common purpose, said: “This is a great day for deaf and deafblind people in Scotland and across the UK.

“Not only does is set us firmly on the road to UK recognition of our language, it shows what the sector can achieve when we work together.

“This Bill wouldn’t have happened if deaf and deafblind people, organisations working through the Scottish Council on Deafness, and the Scottish Government hadn’t put aside their differences and focused on what we collectively care about.

“So I hope it will be a boost to the work that will follow from our statement of common purpose. The group that will oversee it is meeting for the first time at the end of the month, and I know they’ll have their sights set on just as big a prize.

“It’s been over 20 years since the Commission of Enquiry into Human Aids to Communication called for BSL to be officially recognised as a minority language. If we all pull together, perhaps we can achieve that before the end of the decade.”