A letter from Crystal Rolfe, RNID

Dear Editor

Major new research from charity RNID has revealed the negative attitudes and behaviours that deaf people and people with hearing loss experience on a regular basis. 

The research of 8,151 people found that more than a quarter (27%) of deaf people and people with hearing loss are ignored by most people in public settings.

More than two thirds (67%) told us they have experienced negative attitudes or behaviours in the last year, and almost half (48%) said they also experience this from their own family members. 

54% said people tell them ‘It doesn’t matter’ when they struggle to understand, which we know can make people feel like they don’t matter. 47% have experienced people shouting at them.

The impact of this can be huge: people tell us they feel excluded, lonely, and disrespected. Often these experiences cause people to withdraw, to avoid others, and even hide that they are deaf or have hearing loss.

We want people across the UK to stand with us and say that the way deaf people and people with hearing loss are treated really does matter.

We know the public want to help, so we’re urging people to follow our three simple tips to be more inclusive, and learn some simple BSL phrases for everyday conversation.

To get involved, visit rnid.org.uk

Yours sincerely,

Crystal Rolfe, Director of Strategy at RNID