Majority of Brits admit they couldn’t communicate with a deaf person

As the nation marks Deaf Awareness Week (14-20 May), we have uncovered that four in five people (78%) would not be able to communicate with someone who is deaf.

However, encouragingly, 80% of those unable to communicate with people with a hearing impairment would like to receive more education on the subject to improve their knowledge and better their communication skills. Over half (52%) believe there should be more education such as sign-language lessons in schools, while a third (35%) think there should be more attention placed on the disability in the workplace and 33% believe more should be done in the health services to raise awareness.

When asked about issues faced by a child who is deaf, the most commonly perceived problem is the feeling of isolation in conversation (67%), followed by not being able to communicate effectively with classmates (61%) and struggling to keep up at school (59%). Similarly, the biggest perceived problem for those who are deaf at work is being unable to communicate effectively with clients or colleagues (67%). In addition, half of Brits (52%) are concerned a hearing-impaired worker may be left out on social occasions, and 45% think their disability would be an obstacle to gaining promotion.