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‘UK Council on Deafness’ Category

12 AprUKCoD/DAC Relay UK Survey

Thank you to everyone who participated in the 2020 Relay UK survey.  The initial results were surprising.  We will now review the information provided by you before we can issue key findings.   During this process we will be approaching some participants who provided contact details to enable to obtain views on possible solutions to the issues identified.  If any participants would like to be involved, we would love to hear from you.  In the first instance please contact Clare Long at c.long@deafcouncil.org.uk.  We will then be discussing the resulting wish list to improve the communication relay services with BT, Ofcom and others.

18 MarLaw change opens doors for deaf jurors in England and Wales

Deaf people who require the use of a sign language interpreter will be allowed to take part in jury service for the first time, it has been announced.

Before this announcement, laws strictly prohibited anyone beyond the 12 sworn jurors from entering jury deliberation rooms. This is to safeguard against outside influence. It meant that an interpreter would be deemed an unlawful “13th person”, thus preventing those who require their assistance from participating in this important civic duty.

The new Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill 2021 announced last week (March 9th) means over 80,000 deaf people across England and Wales can now participate in jury service. It forms part of wider reforms announced that seek to build a fairer justice system.

Lord Chancellor, Robert Buckland QC MP, said: “Disability should not be a barrier to people carrying out this most important civic duty. I am delighted we can open up jury service to many thousands more people and ensure our justice system becomes as accessible and inclusive as possible.”

Read More

Article provided by Hearing Link

04 JanUKCoD / DAC Relay UK Survey 2020

UKCoD invites all users or previous users of the BT telephone text relay to help by telling us about your experience with it.

The survey will remain open until 17th January 2021.   If you have a few minutes to yourself at any time before 17th January, we would really appreciate you allowing us to take up some of your time. We would like to understand, as clearly as possible, what your personal experience of the relay service has been like, your preferences, any difficulties you have experienced with the relay service and any suggestions you have as clearly as possible.

The number of questions you will be asked and the time it will take to complete will vary according to the answers you provide. We expect a typical participant will be asked about 35 questions and could be completed in about 20 to 30 minutes, however if you have more to tell us, you will be asked more questions.

The results of this survey will be published on 17th March 2021 on the UKCoD website and potentially UKCoD Member websites. We will discuss the results with BT and Ofcom with a view to helping introduce any changes or further services we are able to identify that will help the deaf community.

We carried out a similar survey in 2016.  BT were then able to include many of the suggestions resulting from that survey when they introduced Relay UK. We look forward to being able to repeat the process and that this will result in further improvements.

When you are ready to start the Survey, please click on the link below.  If nothing happens please copy the link into the search /internet address box in your browser and press return.

Survey Link:  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/R9DBSRL

Thank you

09 DecDownload the Relay UK app, for easy conversations with anyone, anywhere

RELAY UK

Download the Relay UK app, for easy conversations with anyone, anywhere

Relay UK, a service provided by BT, helps people with hearing and speech difficulties communicate with anyone over the phone, whether that’s family and friends, work colleagues or healthcare providers. Simply type what you’d like to say, and read the replies straight away, while an assistant relays the conversation.

You can download the app from the App Store or Google Play onto your smartphone, tablet, or computer. And the Relay UK service is free – you’ll only pay your normal charges for the calls you make. Check with your phone provider for more details.

If you, or someone you know is hard of hearing or speech impaired, watch Relay UK’s animation to find out how they can help.

Please do share this information and the animation with your contacts where you think the Relay UK app could help.

See how the app works

20 AugDWP enters legal agreement to improve services for deaf customers

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has entered a legally binding agreement with the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) to improve support for deaf customers accessing its services by telephone.

Two advisers raised a complaint with the EHRC on behalf of four hearing-impaired people who needed to use the telephone service with a British Sign Language interpreter to help them decide whether or not to apply for a home loan.

All four disabled people faced difficulties in dealing with staff from DWP and Serco who didn’t know how to arrange the interpreting service. One out of the four managed to book an interpreter, but only after three months of difficulty.

In its agreement with the EHRC, the DWP has committed to an action plan to address the problems these complaints identified.

The action plan commits DWP to:

  • Provide a Video Relay Service (VRS) across telephony services for all benefits and services. VRS enables deaf users to contact DWP via video relay using an interpreter;
  • Ensure customers can easily locate what they need in order to request information in alternative accessible formats;
  • Improve their customer information system so disabled people’s communication needs are recorded and shared;
  • Improve the use of Equality Analysis in the design and delivery of all changes.

The EHRC will monitor DWP’s action plan on a monthly basis to ensure the agreed steps have been completed.

Full story here.