We worked in partnership with Derbyshire Law Centre, British Deaf Association, Communication Unlimited and Cloisters Chambers where a Solicitor from the Law Centre and a Barrister from Cloisters Chambers were present to advise deaf people.
Q: “I have been refused Direct Payment by my council? What can I do to ask them to change their mind?”
There are many ways to present your case when needing a Direct Payment. Make a list of the support you need at home and surrounding areas (e.g. shopping). You can:
• Ask a Councillor to support you to put a request in for social care support.
• Contact your nearest advice agency that specialises in community care law to get free advice.
• Contact Disability Law Service – dls.org.uk or Derbyshire Law Centre.
Q. “I am a member of a trade union. If my manager or colleague discriminates against me, which is best? Ask my trade union or consult a solicitor/lawyer?”
Trade Union as you already pay a subscription for their service. They have stewards who may be able to represent you at meetings with your Manager to try and resolve problems before they get out of hand. If discrimination does not stop then your union may refer your case to their team of lawyers who can further advise you of your rights in work and whether you have a claim to bring to Employment Tribunal. Most issues get resolved by having meetings with their Managers.
Q. “My deaf child attends local gymnastics but they do not provide an interpreter. Should they?”
It depends on the nature of the disadvantage, and whether it is affordable and practicable for them pay i.e. whether it is a reasonable adjustment. Local Gymnastics club – can they afford to pay for interpreting costs? If not, is the club affiliated to a regional or national body who may be able to pay? If they can pay, then that’s great! If they cannot afford to pay, then there are many options for you to explore:
• Use your Direct Payment to pay for the interpreter’s cost.
• Ask your local Council if they fund for an interpreting service. If so contact them to arrange one for you.
• Unsure then contact Children’s Services or Deaf Adults Social team to get more information on how your child’s communication needs can be met.
Service providers can discriminate if they can show they cannot afford to pay for sign language interpreting costs.
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Q: “Should I be using my Personal Independence Payment (PIP) to pay for communication support (e.g. sign language interpreter) for Estate Agents, Accountants, and Solicitors for their service?”
No. PIP is used to pay for your daily social care needs that come with having a disability (deafness). Where reasonable, it is the service providers’ responsibility to arrange and pay for a sign language interpreter to be present at your appointment. The service provider cannot expect you to pay this in full too. Service Providers need to cost their services properly for all and ensure the extra costs are absorbed in their charging system. If you are charged for having a Sign Language interpreter, contact Derbyshire Law Centre.
Contact Derbyshire Law Centre on:
Telephone: 01246 550674 / 0800 707 6990
SMS: 07781 482826
Textphone relay service for deaf people: 18001 01246 550674