Friday, February 15, 2013
NFTA Meeting - My Agenda
What The Deaf Needs on the Trains and at Airports
1. There's no present text scrolling screens announcing the stops. The deaf cannot hear the announcements being made over the microphone and speakers. I couldn't see out the window when it was snowing and raining out, they were fogged up,therefore I could not tell what stop we were at. The train got overcrowded many times last year and when I couldn't see out the windows to see if it was time to get off. I couldn't go look out the door at each stop because people were standing and blocking the door entrance. It was very difficult to know when to get off.
2 When the train broke down when I was on it last summer, I didn't hear the instructions on what we had to do next over the speakers. I didn't know what to do, or if I was supposed to get off.
3. At the train station, the cops set up a table to check everyones bags, etc. The cops said something to me and I didn't understand a word being said. Same problem on the train. The person that checks to see if everyone has their ticket, checks mine and I don't understand what the cop on the train is saying to me. I can't hear on the train and it was hard to lipread what the cops were saying.
1. Provide text scrolling screens at all times displaying the words of all stops. For safety reason, they need to display any announcements being made when the train breaks down too on the text screens for the deaf. Believe me the deaf needs to know what is going on too when there's an emergency or if something happens!
2. If for some reason you can't provide any text scrolling screens for the deaf right now, then display a button on every train for the deaf person to press for help if it breaks down. That way when he or she presses the button it can send someone over that knows sign language to tell this deaf person what happened and what he is supposed to do when the train breaks down. As far as not knowing the stops if there's no text scrolling screens, this creates a big problem for those who can't hear the announcements. If noone knows sign language then have someone write down what is going on for the deaf passenger.
3. Is it possible to teach those who work in the train station and on the train a little sign language? They really only need to learn how to say, Can I see your ticket? Or do you have your train ticket? It really isnt' that difficult to learn, and it doesn't take very long. Also thank you is easy to say in sign language. If not, then try to teach the people who work on the train to face the deaf person when talking so that we can lipread him or her. And to carry paper and a pen in case he is hard to lipread. If you can't find anyone to help teach sign language, I'm around on weekends, and some week nights if you need a little help. I do know some sign language.
1. Provide signs, brochures, flyers, any kind of material to let all deaf people know you have services for the deaf at airports. Send it to them in the mail. Show t.v. commercials once a week about the services you provide to help the deaf passengers. Provide the information in these materials on how we can apply for these services. Leaving a phone number on your website doesn't really help. The deaf cannot hear on the phone. Not all people use the internet, so don't expect all deaf people to find out about your services through a website online. Please try to put the information about your Deaf services in the Buffalo Paper once a month, so that we have the most updated information on how to get these services. You can also consider emailing everyone that needs these services. I never got any email before my last flight in December from Delta Airlines telling me they had special services. When I was at the airport and checked in, I told the lady I was deaf . She did not refer me to any kind of special services I could use as a deaf passenger, therefore I didn't know the airport even had anything to help me. I also told the person at the gate I was deaf, the gate person did not refer me or tell me about any such services that was available in the airport.
2. If you don't provide close captioning screens at every single gate, then inform the deaf passenger how to make sure he or she gets the gate that has that screen. When I flew to Detroit last dec.2012. they did not provide any closed captioning screen for me at the gate even though I told them I was deaf at the Buffalo airport.
3. Please close caption all safety instructions on every plane that the deaf passenger is on. And teach the flight attendants sign language. You could consider providing a closed captioning screen at the deaf passengers seat when they do the safety demonstrations. Make sure all deaf passengers sit up front where they can lipread the flight attendant if she doesn't know any sign language.
Thank you for reading! I hope you can find my ideas useful and helpful for the deaf passengers.