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Nottinghamshire County Council working in partnership with the British Deaf Association

04 October 2021

BDA-Logo.jpg County Councillor Gordon Wheeler.jpg

Nottinghamshire County Council is to take part in a wide-ranging consultation process with the British Deaf Association (BDA) to help understand the group’s needs and shape its services for individuals.

The audit will highlight what the County Council has achieved since signing and adopting the British Sign Language Charter and map the improvements it has made to ensure access to services is available for the deaf community.

County Council officers will work with the BDA in the coming weeks to identify any areas where deaf people still have barriers in accessing services – as well as celebrating the good work the authority has carried out and sharing best practice.

Councillor Gordon Wheeler, Chairman of the Personnel Committee, says the County Council is committed in its support of the charter and highlighted the importance of engaging with the deaf community as part of the audit to ensure the correct processes are in place.

He said: “Having this audit and communicating with people from the deaf community will allow us to understand their needs and ultimately create better services for individuals and, where needed, make changes to achieve the standard we strive to achieve.

“I am really looking forward to engaging with our Equalities Officer and the British Deaf Association to look at practical ways of developing our services further and making sure people from the deaf community feel they can access Nottinghamshire County Council without any barriers.

“We need to understand the issues they have experienced which can help us shape our services and identify solutions going forward. Together, we can create inclusivity for people from the deaf community.”

The BDA works closely with the deaf community and those who use British Sign Language (BSL). It campaigns to empower people who use BSL and works to improve access to services for the deaf community as well as encouraging them to feedback and take part in local services.

The organisation also carries out training and advocacy and encourages local authorities, health service providers and other local services to adopt the BDA’s BSL Charter to improve access and rights for deaf people who use sign language.

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