Saturday, 25 March 2017

Derby Police: Crime at Home ?

Recently we launched a British Sign Language (BSL) film to highlight the difference between emergency and non-emergency SMS numbers for people who are Deaf or hard of hearing.

The film shows different scenarios and gives advice on what is considered an emergency and what is not, and how Deaf people or those hard of hearing can contact the police using SMS texts across our region.

This video is a snippet from that film, and focuses on what action a Deaf or hard of hearing person can take if, for example, their home has been burgled while they were out or if they witness anything strange whilst in the house, and what they should do.

To see the full video - and to watch other useful videos if you're Deaf or hard of hearing - visit our website:

We also have a PLOD Facebook page. The Police Link Officers for the Deaf (PLOD) scheme consists of police officers and police staff who have received training in deaf awareness and are skilled in the use of British Sign Language (BSL) at different levels.

PLOD use their skills in providing a service for any non-emergency situation where communication support is required as a point of contact. Find them on Facebook via:

2017 A G BELL symposium.

ATR V last Hiccup ?

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Handbags at dawn. Only 3% of deaf people sign, get over it.

Friday, 24 March 2017

CAB to develop BSL services...

New Health equality practice checks on healthcare UK

We've had the law since 1995, now they will check to see if it being enforced ?

Inspections carried out into general practices by NHS regulator the Care Quality Commission (CQC) will include new objectives from next month that seek to ensure better equality for all patient groups.

The CQC has published new equality objectives for 2017-19 in a document intended to target inequality in health and social care.  The regulator said that despite progress on equality, people from some equality groups were still less likely to receive good quality health and social care.

It wants to check during inspections that providers make person-centred care work for everyone, from all equality groups such as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people using adult social care or mental health inpatient services.  The CQC has set an objective to look at reducing barriers and improving access to primary care for migrants, asylum seekers, Gypsies and Travellers, to help address their poor health outcomes.

It will also look at how people in specific equality groups are supported on referral, transfer between services - including adult social care services and health services - on discharge from hospital and in primary care.

From October, the CQC will:

Add a specific question to its Provider Information Request forms (PIR) on person centred care and equality.

Have inspectors examine these issues on inspection.

Build on the PIR response and support this with guidance and informal learning.

Identify, promote and share outstanding practice.

Communicating its expectations to providers and to people who use services by gathering their views.

In addition, the CQC will share information and intelligence with Healthwatch England on inequality.

In the first year of the new objectives (2017-18), the initial focus will be on how providers ensure person-centred care for older BME (black and minority ethnic) people using GP practices, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people who use adult social care and mental health inpatient services, and for people with dementia in acute hospitals.

For year two (2018-19), the regulator said it would review progress in the first year’s areas before determining its next focus.

The CQC said that through its inspections, it would also look at how providers were meeting the new Accessible Information Standard introduced last year, which applies to disabled people who have information and communication needs, for example, deaf people or people with a learning disability.

Software that is helping people with disabilities

closed captioning weathermanFCC rules require TV stations to provide closed captions that convey speech, sound effects, and audience reactions such as laughter to deaf and hard of hearing viewers. YouTube isn’t subject to those rules, but thanks to Google’s machine-learning technology, it now offers similar assistance.

YouTube has used speech-to-text software to automatically caption speech in videos since 2009 (they are used 15 million times a day). Today it rolled out algorithms that indicate applause, laughter, and music in captions. More sounds could follow, since the underlying software can also identify noises like sighs, barks, and knocks.

The company says user tests indicate that the feature significantly improves the experience of the deaf and hard of hearing (and anyone who needs to keep the volume down). “Machine learning is giving people like me that need accommodation in some situations the same independence as others,” says Liat Kaver, a product manager at YouTube who is deaf.

Indeed, YouTube’s project is one of a variety that are creating new accessibility tools by building on progress in the power and practicability of machine learning. The computing industry has been driven to advance software that can interpret images, text, or sound primarily by the prospect of profits in areas such as ads, search, or cloud computing. But software with some ability to understand the world has many uses.

Last year, Facebook launched a feature that uses the company’s research on image recognition to create text descriptions of images from a person’s friends, for example.

Researchers at IBM are using language-processing software developed under the company’s Watson project to make a tool called Content Clarifier to help people with cognitive or intellectual disabilities such as autism or dementia. It can replace figures of speech such as “raining cats and dogs” with plainer terms, and trim or break up lengthy sentences with multiple clauses and indirect language.

Blind & Deaf care inadequate...

Problems - Patients with sensory impairments face 'significant issues' with their care, a report claims.
Health services for the deaf and blind in Essex have been slammed in a new report on the county’s care services.

The latest public engagement project from Healthwatch Essex – the independent charity that provides a voice for the people of Essex on health and care services – has highlighted the significant issues of more than 180,000 people with sensory impairments face when accessing and using health and care services in the county.

In 2016, the Accessible Information Standard was introduced, making it a legal requirement for all NHS or adult social care organisations to make sure that people who have a disability, impairment or sensory loss are provided with information they can easily read or understand and to communicate effectively. Despite this, Healthwatch Essex’s new report highlights a range of difficulties people who are Deaf or hard of hearing, sight impaired or severely sight impaired or Deafblind experience on a regular basis.

Key findings of the report are the impact on dignity and quality of life and the loss of autonomy and confidentiality. Many participants highlighted the fact they often needed to get a family member or carer to make appointments for them, which was inconvenient and in some cases compromised their patient confidentiality.  Regular problems included stiff and rigid booking systems, poor recording and sharing of information and people not receiving information and communication in their preferred format.

Dr Tom Nutt, Healthwatch Essex Chief Executive, said: “One profoundly deaf participant told us that when she asked a receptionist: ‘How do deaf people make appointments?’, her reply was to shrug her shoulders and say: ‘We’ve never had a complaint before’.

“A blind participant told us of an experience where a receptionist told him to, ‘go and take a seat over there!’. Not thinking that ‘over there’ could be construed as just a tad ambiguous by a blind person!  “People told us what they most valued was to be treated as an individual so they can take control where possible.”

He added: “They don’t want to repeat their story at each consultation and they want to encounter friendly, helpful staff who provide them with information in a format that is suitable for them. Doesn’t seem like too much to ask.”

Thursday, 23 March 2017

NHIR Scanning Research of emerging Technology....

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The NIHR Horizon Scanning Research and Intelligence Centre has published a horizon scanning review of new and emerging technologies that are being developed for the management and reduction of the negative consequences of hearing loss.

More than 11 million, (approximately one in six) people in the UK are affected by hearing loss, the majority (92%) experiencing mild to moderate hearing loss. The likelihood of hearing loss increases with age, with more than 70% of 70 year-olds experiencing some form of hearing loss. Hearing loss is however, not uncommon in children; there are over 45,000 children in the UK who have a profound hearing loss.

We identified 55 technologies that fitted the identification criteria: five educational programmes, six auditory and cognitive training programmes, five assistive listening devices, eleven hearing aids (HAs) and alternative listening devices, eight implants and devices, twelve drugs, one regenerative medicine approach, and seven surgical procedures. Most of the developments were in early or uncertain clinical research and would require additional evaluation before widespread adoption by patients and the NHS.

Experts and patients picked out technologies of interest including: apps for converting speech to text and sign language to speech, hearing aids and alternative listening devices to support listening in different environments, a fully implantable cochlear implant (CI) system, a closed-loop CI system, and three developments to support the tuning and optimisation of HAs. If these were successful they have the potential to change the CI landscape for patients, improve patient experience and use of HAs, and to affect service delivery and provision.

Deaf V Deaf ?

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How just 3% of deaf people want to isolate the other 97% with deafness and loss. Deafism rule! Another extremist rant from the Deaf thought police central and home of loony tunes Inc aka Last Hiccup, (We wish it was their last!), with enough 'isms' to keep you occupied for the next 50 years.  

Far from 'identifying' deaf hate, he promotes it and extreme viewpoints that are anti-hearing, anti-deaf, anti-HoH, anti-CIs', anti-hearing aids, anti-genetic choices, and anti-parental decisions, and still hating a man dead a 100 years... is there ANYTHING LH does support ? Read on as Last Hiccup rants about those awful 'Hearing students'.

Gallaudet University: The biggest mistake is to allow hearing students at Gallaudet in early 1990’s. That is why it is also much diversion in Deaf community.

The bigger mistake was putting all deaf activism in one place and allowing Gallaudet to be a hot bed of radicalism, where we saw 'hearing hate' and oral-using deaf hate in action..

DPN was a series of hard-fought, locally and nationally organized campaigns, shining the lights of the media to challenge hearing privileges and employment that hearing people took away from Deaf people who are highly qualified for the jobs.

Not true, ASL student activists rioted, caused criminal damage, and closed down classes, denying educational access to their peers.  They even objected to their own diversity representation officer to make Gallaudet LESS diverse, and subjected teaching staff to the 'Deaf Inquisition' to ascertain if they were pro extreme ASL culture or not.

Blocking and closing classes which prevented access to Higher education they need to compete for jobs.  Hardly encouraging people to support integration, inclusion or equality, unless living in a vacuum is their idea of equality, and isolating deaf from the rest of the world.

It saddens me to see that Deaf against Deaf. How can we make it feel like 1988? 

Or even like 1880 ?  not going to happen, this is 2017, get real !


As is typical for these extremists, feedback and challenges aren't allowed. Welcome to cultural equality in action.