On 24th March, deafPLUS published a list of measures that would transform the lives of isolated deaf and hard of hearing people.
Please download the deafPLUS Manifesto from here: You can print it out and show it to candidates in your area who are asking for your vote. Please ask them to support these measures on behalf of deaf people.
deafPLUS’ manifesto is an urgent call to action for all political parties ahead of the 2015 General Election. It asks party leaders to make ten commitments in their party manifestos that would vastly improve the lives of people who are deaf or who have hearing loss.
The ten measures, which range from specialist healthcare to employment access, are designed to end isolation, better integrate deaf people into local communities and improve quality of life.
health & audiology
- Improved access to specialist mental health services for deaf people. Improved after-care and support for audiology patients. NHS hearing aids should not be rationed. Audiology patients should receive the hearing aids they need.
- Routine screening of hearing for people with learning disabilities. Increased research and specialist support for people with dementia who also have age related hearing loss. This should include specialist language support for those who are BSL users who develop dementia.
- Ensure access to work is properly resourced and legally protected.
- Provide more BSL programming on TV, and better quality subtitling – particularly of live broadcast TV.
tv & cinema
- Ensure that all on-demand TV services from the main broadcasters (streamed and downloaded content) are subtitled. Wider availability of subtitled screenings at cinemas.
- Commit to better communication support for deaf people who live in care homes. Where necessary, this should include ensuring that staff members are adequately trained in BSL or other appropriate communication techniques (e.g. lipspeaking).
- Make a commitment for accessibility to be routinely built into public buildings and care homes as a legal requirement – including loop systems.
- Provide lipreading classes for our aging population; together with more support for people who are losing their hearing.
deafPLUS Chief Executive, Gary Williams, says:
“Last year deafPLUS helped 4,500 clients to overcome the barriers they encounter in their everyday lives. Our manifesto sets out some simple commonsense measures that would significantly improve the lives of deaf and hard of hearing people in the UK.”
deafPLUS’ mission is to support adults who are deaf or living with hearing loss by combating isolation, challenging discrimination, promoting independence and raising awareness of issues affecting its service users.