A new campaign by the National Deaf Childrens Society to increase the provision of radio aids to pre-school deaf children has received the backing of Chesterfield MP, Toby Perkins.
The ‘Right from the Start’ campaign is aimed at ensuring deaf children get the help and support they need during early years, when learning and communication are crucial, and trying to reduce barriers that can delay development.
Toby said, “At a time when local authority budget cuts are impacting on services available to families, we need the Government to step in and help ensure deaf children have the equipment and support they need to develop at the same pace as other children.”
Radio aids help deaf children hear speech by transmitting what people are saying direct to the child’s hearing aid or cochlear implant. Research undertaken by the National Deaf Childrens Society has found that the use of radio aids hearing technology can make a big difference in the early years, helping deaf children hear their parents above any background noise. At the moment less than half of local authorities across country have any provision of radio aids.
Toby added, “I have now written to the Secretary of State for Education urging the Government to make funding available to local authorities to increase provision of radio aids. It is my understanding that Derbyshire is one of the authorities who provide aids to pre-school deaf children in the home and I am contacting them to see how we can increase awareness of the benefits of radio aids and ensure every deaf child has the opportunity to access this technology.”