A recent article published by Scottish Council on Deafness (SCoD) couldn’t have read my mind better. Here’s a short snippet of what they had to say:
Inclusive Communication and Accessible Information
Communication is a two way process. It is how we understand others and express ourselves. Inclusive communication goes further and includes a mutual respect and equal access. It is about a change in attitude in society, in government, in business, where we work, spend our leisure time and live our lives.
Inclusive communication is about asking what your employees and your customers need to understand the messages that you want to give; and thinking about how best to meet these needs with the assets you have access to. Accessible information is a tool to help make Inclusive Communication happen.
How relevant this is. Without access there can be no communication building; without inclusion people do not think about access.
With the technology available to us in the 21st century, access and inclusion should not still having to be fought for. My own view is that cost will always be the deciding factor in any decision. Whether the law says access should be equal and mandatory or not, there will always be those that prefer to weigh the odds and run the risk of being caught and sued rather than following the law for provision.
Scotland in particular is making headway with accessibility after consultations and the first draft of the BSL national plan will be published on Sunday 22nd October. I look forward with interest to reading it.