East Lancashire Deaf Society News
Deaf people who use British Sign Language (BSL) now have the opportunity to report crimes online via video link.
This new service called SignVideo, has been launched by Greater Manchester Police, and uses a video interpreter between the caller and police call handlers. It can be found on the GMP website, and accessed from a phone, tablet or computer.
This is a huge step for deaf people, as previously they would have to report a crime face to face with an interpreter present.
Assistant Chief Con Garry Shewan said: “The deaf community face many challenges every day when communicating and this new service enhances the ways in which people can access policing services. “SignVideo will help people whose preferred or only method of communication is via British Sign Language get in touch with us – a vital service for many members of our community.
“It also shows our commitment to tailoring our services to meet the demands of the people that use it.”
Mark Hudson, the managing director at SignVideo, said: “We are extremely proud to be partnering with Greater Manchester Police to provide video relay services to their 101 service for deaf BSL users.
“We hope other UK police forces will now follow the lead of GMP in providing inclusion and equality for the BSL population, by making themselves more accessible to the UK Deaf BSL community as a whole.”
Other sign translation services available out of Manchester is SignPhone, which can be used to translate almost anything in any situation using a translator over Skype.
To find out more click here
Holly Parker, 14 from Thaxted has been selected as one of the 24 winners of the National Deaf Children’s Society (NDCS) ‘Raising the Bar’ competition.
Holly who is profoundly deaf was chosen by the NDCS and the leading deaf professional from the arts and entertainment industry for her exceptional talent playing Le Streght on her violin, the young student is now hoping to inspire the next generation of deaf dance, music and acting stars.
Holly is thrilled to have won the competition and said: “I can’t really explain how music sounds to me because I have only heard music as a deaf person. I know I hear it differently to other people and some sounds I don’t hear very well, but I love it. I am thrilled to win a national music competition.”
The competition was launched at the beginning of the year by Sophie Stone, a deaf actress who appeared in Doctor Who, Sophie recently said: “I am so impressed by the high standard of entries for the competition. Deaf children are just as capable as everyone else. We just need to make sure they get the right support.”
The winners have been invited to attend a mentoring weekend in June before taking part in the final live showcase in Birmingham.