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National Assembly recognised for reducing barriers to people with a hearing loss

12 June 2013

The National Assembly for Wales has received recognition for its work in reducing barriers to people who are deaf or have a hearing loss.

Action on Hearing Loss’s Louder than Words charter mark recognises organisations’ and businesses’ achievements in this area.

“The National Assembly for Wales prides itself on its openness and transparency,” said Presiding Officer, Rosemary Butler.

“But we cannot be truly open and transparent unless everyone in Wales is able to participate in our work.

“That’s why we are committed to ensuring that the work of the Assembly is accessible to all in Wales and providing services that are accessible for those who are deaf or have a hearing loss is a key part of that commitment.”

The charter is made up of ten quality standards used to determine the accessibility of the Assembly for staff, visitors and service users.

Some of the work undertaken by the Assembly to improve accessibility includes:

  • mandatory equality training for all staff, plus deaf awareness training and British Sign Language training;

  • comprehensive loop system coverage on our estate;

  • having policies and procedures in place to support staff who are deaf or have a hearing loss;

  • having an active Disability Staff Network; and

  • ensuring staff are aware of different types of communication support.

Richard Williams, Director of Action on Hearing Loss Cymru, said: "Hearing loss affects one in six people across Wales.

“We are therefore delighted that the National Assembly for Wales has shown real commitment in meeting our Louder than Words best practice standards, ensuring that the National Assembly is a welcoming and accessible space for everyone and that those people who are deaf or hard of hearing have equal access to Assembly services.”

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