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Parliament: Lipreading Funding

Bob Spink (Castle Point, UKIP)

I know that the Leader of the House cares about the 9 million people in the UK who are deaf or hard of hearing, for whom lip-reading is an absolutely essential life skill. Could we have a debate on the Government's guidance to local authorities on the cost of lip-reading classes? Uncaring councils such as Conservative-controlled Essex county council are pricing vulnerable groups out of lip-reading classes, and I am sure that no one in this House wants to see that practice.

Harriet Harman (Lord Privy Seal, House of Commons; Camberwell & Peckham, Labour)

The hon. Gentleman raises a very important point, and this is one of the reasons why we have placed a specific duty on all organisations in the public sector, including local authorities, not to discriminate against people on grounds of disability, and to promote equality of opportunity and inclusion. The kind of services that he has described as being put at risk by Essex county council are exactly those that allow people to play a full part in the economy, by going out to work, and in the life of the community. I will raise this issue with the Equality and Human Rights Commission, and see what it has to say about it.

Source:
Hansard
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