On January 4 at 10:30 a.m. The Arizona Commission for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing (ACDHH) will cut the ribbon with the Arizona State Legislature and celebrate the launch of the second looping system in the nation at a state capitol.
Looping technology sends a clear sound to a person’s hearing aid or cochlear implant without distortion or background noise and will be available throughout the House and Senate chambers, floor and hearing rooms. Most importantly, the looping technology gives the 1.1 million Arizona adults living with a hearing loss better access to their legislative process.
“While the House and Senate have been accessible to individuals with physical disabilities and interpreters are available for members of the Deaf community fluent in sign language, a large portion of individuals with a hearing loss have not had effective assistive technology available to them in the chambers….until now,” explains Sherri Collins, Executive Director of ACDHH. “We commend our Arizona Legislature on being a national leader in installing the looping technology to ensure all Arizonans are able to effectively take part in our state’s legislative process.”
An induction loop system consists of one or more loops of wire driven by an amplifier connected to the sound system. The hearing loop transmits the sound from the PA system in the form of ripples in the magnetic field directly to hearing aids and cochlear implants set to the “T” or telecoil setting. A telecoil, a small copper coil found in most hearing ads and all cochlear implants, picks up magnetic waves from the loop and converts it into electrical energy, similar to how a microphone converts sound waves into electrical energy.
“We worked diligently to secure the funding and improve access, and commend the Legislative leadership for ensuring the hard of hearing community has access to the resources they need to fully participate in the political process,” said Sue Kay Kneifel, chair of the board of commissioners of the ACDHH.
The Arizona Legislative Council, a government agency with authority for both the House and Senate, received an appropriation for the $250,000 and oversaw the installation, which has been completed in time for the 2017 Legislative session. The funds come from fees collected through an already existing landline telephone tax designated to provide services to the deaf and hard of hearing community. The event is free and open to the public.
WHEN: Wednesday, January 4, 10:30 a.m.
WHERE: Arizona State Capitol, House Lawn, 1700 W. Washington, Phoenix, AZ 85007
To learn more about the ACDHH and its efforts to improve the quality of life for the deaf and the hard of hearing, please visit www.acdhh.org or follow on social media:
The Arizona Commission for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing (ACDHH) serves as a statewide information and referral center for issues related to people with hearing loss and aspires to be a national leader in communication access, support services and community empowerment throughout the state. The purpose of the organization and its Commissioners is to ensure, in partnership with the public and private sectors, accessibility for the deaf and the hard of hearing to improve their quality of life. For more information about the ACDHH, please visit www.acdhh.org