It would be very naughty if you were to visit your local bank and tell them you just need the hearing loop switched on. You know it is not on, when you hear a buzz or nothing at all 😉 .
The usual reaction is they want you to change queues and go to another counter where the loop is positioned (more waiting). It’s like a cushion loop around someone’s chair. In a local bank this has now been upgraded to a loop that runs around the counter. Do you want to post the reason hard-of-hearing people ROFL when that happens?
Anyway last week, the teller leapt out of her chair and ran out. Frowns from other customers. Just about to join another queue when she reappeared with an old-looking portable radio loop … that was showing a red light.
“Er , it needs charging for about 8 hours.”
She went not just pale, but white. No worries, really, it wasn’t that big of a deal. All work stopped. Two more Customer Service people and three Counter Tellers gathered around the loop, their backs to the customers like pecking pigeons. When I looked round at the queue, a guy smirked and some were smiling.
“It’s okay, your colleague can just speak up.”
There was a giggle behind me and everyone ROFL. Customer Services gaped ; this failure to accommodate the customer was not in their game plan. Had they just had a training day on hearing and felt everything had to be perfect? Really, it didn’t; we can wait. Then a Manager appeared and took me away on his white charger … wishful thinking, but we sat down on a one-to-one and he had a 10-second lesson on charging hearing loops. Poor guy! You could do this and banks could help us hear better.
So who helps companies? You do. If you don’t want anyone to know it’s you asking and hey, we’ll talk about that, get your Human Resources to call in a D/deaf charity to give the training (they get paid for it). Spreading the word is a great way to move hearing forward.
- How hearing loops can help(psychologicalscience.org) – If you live in the States and there’s one article you want to read, make it this one. It backs up Hearing Wellbeing. Next blog is about the article as the Comments are closed.