COMMUNICATIONS NEWS: Sense appeals to MPs for support on deafblind issues

Sense is to invite MPs to training days on deaf and blind issues as part of its strategy to target politicians.

The charity is trying to engage people in positions of power in its work by encouraging them to get actively involved, rather than by simply lobbying them.

"It's not that politicians aren't keen to help the deaf and blind, it's more that they aren't aware of the issues,

said Sense parliamentary and public policy officer Katie Hanson.

The training days, the first of which will take place in Bristol in September, are accredited by the Council for the Advancement of Communication with Deaf People and leads to a certificate in Deafblind Awareness Skills.

Hanson doesn't expect many MPs to attend the whole weekend but hopes some will stay for an hour or send a member of staff.

Sense is also to launch a 10-page resource pack for MPs at Westminster on 9 July. It explains the different types of hearing and vision loss and outlines how politicians can do their bit to help by holding surgeries in premises accessible for deafblind people and providing a sign language interpreter if requested.

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