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Government promises to involve BSL users

20 January 2012

The British Deaf Association, Britain’s largest Deaf People's Organisation, welcomes the Government’s agreement to involve people who affected by the reforms to the Disability Living Allowance (DLA) that will see the phased introduction of Personal Independence Payment (PIP).

Chief Executive David Buxton says: “We have been aware for some time about the Government’s intentions about the DLA but what concerns Deaf people whose first or preferred language is British Sign Language (BSL) is the issue of access.  This is why we welcome their commitment to involving Deaf people.”

“For too long, Deaf people have been routinely excluded from the Big Society in terms of not using sign language interpreters so that Deaf people can voice their issues publicly.  Many Deaf people with BSL are excluded from employment, from their own local services, and from joining in local groups such as mother and toddler groups – simply because there is no provision for access through sign language interpreters.  The Government can lead the way by providing sign language interpreters at every stage of the process.”