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Archive for June, 2014

30 JunSign Solutions helps Hearing Dogs for Deaf People expand its reach


SignSolutions - Language and Learning

Sign Solutions helps Hearing Dogs for Deaf People expand its reach

National charity Hearing Dogs for Deaf People is looking to expand its reach by introducing a video interpreting service for its profoundly Deaf customers.

Launched by Midlands-based sign language interpreting agency Sign Solutions, ‘InterpretersLive!’ allows business to access dedicated interpreters at the touch of a button and is available to Deaf people across the country via PC, tablet or smartphone.

Clare Vale, managing director at Sign Solutions, said: “While traditionally Deaf people would need to book time with a sign language interpreter in advance, the great thing about the InterpretersLive! service is that anyone can have instant access to a dedicated interpreter whenever they need it.

“As the majority of Hearing Dogs for Deaf People’s customers are profoundly Deaf, offering the ‘InterpretersLive!’ facility seemed a perfect fit for the organisation.”

Founded in 1982, Hearing Dogs for Deaf People has created more than 1950 partnerships between hearing dogs and their Deaf recipients in its 32 year history, and there are currently over 850 working partnerships in the UK. . Each hearing dog is trained to respond to sounds like the alarm clock, telephone, and fire alarm, providing greater levels of independence and confidence.

Angie Platten, head of partnership services at Hearing Dogs for Deaf People added: “We help deaf people by training life-changing hearing dogs to alert to important sounds and danger signals, and we are delighted that we can now offer this service. The immediacy of the video interpreting service means that Deaf people will never need to wait for an interpreter to be made available when they want to talk with a member of the Hearing Dogs team.”

The introduction of the ‘InterpretersLive!’ service comes ahead of the next hearing dog application date which will be taking place on Wednesday 1st October. For more information visit or to find out more about Sign Solutions visit


For all press enquiries, please contact Rewired PR on 0121 236 2132.

Kristy Norris

19 JunOfcom could fine BT over Next Generation Text Relay delay

BT has been warned by the communications regulator Ofcom that it could be financially penalised for a delay in making available a new telephone service for deaf and hard of hearing people.

Lidia Best

Lidia Best, Trustee of UKCoD and Chairperson of NADP comments “National Association for Deafened People (NADP)  is very disappointed with the delay and the breach of OFCOM deadline. We hope that the right attention is now given to resolve the issues and people, both deafened and hard of hearing people, and those who want to get in touch with them, will be able to benefit from the improved service.”

Read Full Story 

18 JunNext Generation Text Relay Service

At a meeting in May with UKCoD’s Deaf Access to Communications group, BT apologised for the delay in launching the Next Generation Text Relay service and reiterated their commitment to delivering the new service. They acknowledge the disappointment, frustration and anger that many feel, and recognise the need to rebuild trust and confidence in the new service, when it will be available and what it has to offer.

Graham Sutherland, BT Business’ CEO, outlined three key phases – fixing the problem, further testing of the service and finally launch, which is expected early October.

BT are hoping to significantly expand the number of people testing the service and will provide DAC regular updates over the coming weeks and months.

DAC May update – BT and the disappointing wait for NGTR (pdf)

Notes from the meeting on 27th May are available here (pdf)

11 JunStop the cuts to NHS hearing aid services

Urgent campaign - stop the cuts to hearing aid services.

Action on Hearing Loss are taking action in response to the proposed decommissioning by North Staffordshire CCG of hearing aid provision for people with mild or moderate age-related hearing loss, which many of you will have heard about.

How can you help?

There are three ways you can get involved right now to help us fight these cuts:

A press release can also be found on their website for further details.


03 JunAccess to Volunteering

Access to Volunteering could do much more than increase the number of volunteers

by Jim Edwards, Chair of the UK Council on Deafness

Originally posted on the NCVO blog

There’s one big difference between the current Access to Work scheme and the 2009 Access to Volunteering fund.

Both aim to make sure disabled people have equal access, either to work or volunteering, by providing practical support. That might mean equipment, transport, a support worker or awareness training. Read more of this article