Deaf people who are not able to use regular library
materials, should be able to conveniently identity and obtain resources
in a format they can use. This would include independent access to catalogs
and databases and the support system necessary to obtain materials bibliographical
and full text, in accessible format.
Full range of library and information services would
be provided to them by the public library in cooperation with other appropriate
libraries, institutions, agencies and organizations.
For non-signing library staff to communicate with co-workers
and/or customers who are deaf:
- Large Print books
- Easy to Read Books
- Books in Braille by Mail
- Assistive Devices for accessing catalogs, databases,
and the Internet
- Assistive Listening Devices and Systems (ALDS)
- TTY, telecommunication relay services, FAX
- Video Relay Services (VRS)
- Videos, DVDs and Films: Captioned and/or in Sign
- Communication Access Real time Translation (CART)
- Signage (directions in a few words, pictures)
- Interpreters: Voice to Sign Language, Sign Language
to Voice, Oral, Tactile Signing and Close Vision
- Alerting devices: flashing lamps as ringers, light/vibration
signalers, flashing alarm systems, smoke detector and others
- Collection on deaf culture and sign language
- Collection on hearing issues and support services
- Collection on disability issues and support services
- Trained staff
- Get the person’s attention before speaking. A light
touch on the shoulder, a wave, or other visual signals will help.
- Look directly at the person when signing/speaking
even when an interpreter is present.
- Speak slowly and clearly without shouting; don’t
exaggerate or overemphasize lip movements.
- Use body language and facial expression to supplement
- Maintain eye contact.
- If the person doesn't understand you, rephrase
your message instead of repeating it more loudly. Use short sentences.
- Keep your hands away from your face and mouth while
- Make sure lighting makes your face clearly visible.
Avoid situations where there is distracting black lighting. For example,
do not stand in front of a sunny window.
- Be aware that gum chewing, cigarette smoking, pencil
biting, and similar obstructions of the lips will lessen the effectiveness
of your communication.
- Tell the person if the telephone rings or there
is some other interruption.
- Do not ignore the person and make her/him wait
while you carry on a conversation with someone else. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT.
- Be familiar with auxiliary aids, such as TTY, telephone
relay services, video relay services (VRS) and assistive listening devices
and systems (ALDS).
- Respect people for making their choice to use auxiliary
aids and services.
- Be aware that many people share common values and
beliefs based on their background, so please respect their culture.
- Never ask people if they can read lips. Some do,
but it can be a strain for them because many words look alike on the lips.
Asking about reading lips seems to put the responsibility for communication
on the other person, when it should be a shared exchange.
- Use paper and pen to lessen misunderstanding
- If you know sign language, tell them but please
do not assume that all deaf people know or use sign language.