British Sign Language (BSL) users can communicate more easily with the emergency services following the launch of a new service this month.
999BSL is a free-to-use video relay service that can be accessed online or downloaded as an app. In an emergency, people who are deaf or hard of hearing can use 999BSL to connect with a BSL interpreter. The interpreter will then call 999 using a landline to relay the conversation to the emergency services operator.
To use the service:
- Open the 999 BSL app or website
- Press the red button to video call
- Communicate with the BSL interpreter
Superintendent Craig Flint, who is the constabulary’s strategic lead for disability, said: ‘999BSL helps dismantle barriers faced by people who are deaf or hard of hearing by making it easier for them to communicate with the police and other emergency services.
‘It is an important step forward in our journey to becoming truly inclusive and as a police force we are continually looking at new ways to make our service more accessible for those living with disabilities.’
For more information visit the 999BSL website.