The BSL interpreter helps deliver the training
The BSL interpreter helps deliver the training

At the end of 2015, the My Life, My Decision project saw Age UK Trafford deliver an awareness briefing specifically for the deaf community.

It was enthusiastically welcomed by the group with a British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter working hard to get the message across.

Feedback from the group echoed the ongoing struggle to improve accessibility to services and information the deaf community face.

Some of the points of feedback attendees mentioned were:

  • Doctors have wrongly assumed that a deaf person lacks capacity as they have not used the appropriate means of communication to enable a deaf person to express their wishes
  • More of the My Life, My Decision reading material needs to be adapted for the deaf
  • More BSL interpreters need to be trained to understand the 3 Tools for Planning
  • More professionals need to be made aware that they need to use the right methods of communication to engage the deaf community when assessing the mental capacity

The group were keen for Compassion in Dying to take on board their points and work to incorporate them in future planning.