The Deaf in Canada,

Old Jun 12th 2008, 6:42 pm
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Default The Deaf in Canada,

I noticed in an other thread Daft Batty mention her deafness.

When I was in England I can not recall ever seeing groups of Deaf people out on the town, happily signing to each other. Here I see it all the time.

Also I have come across completely deaf people serving in shops, they just ask that you look at them when you speak. I never came across this in the UK either.

Did I just lead a sheltered life for 44 years in the UK, are is Canada different in its treatment of the Deaf?
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 7:02 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

I think the treatment of deaf people in the UK has changed. I have a deaf cousin, when we were kids she went to a 'special' school. Now, my children go to the local mainstream state school, which also takes deaf and hearing impaired kids. The deaf children are fully integrated into the school with most classes having two or three deaf or hearing impaired children. It's lovely and great for all the kids.

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Old Jun 12th 2008, 7:08 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

I am hard of hearing and have lived in both places.

I found that being HoH in Britain much, much, much more difficult than in Canada. So much so that it was a significant factor in my decision to come back to Canada. Some days were an absolute nightmare.
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 9:11 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

Here comes the PC bit. Deaf people, thats Deaf with a capital D use sign language as their first language. Its grammar and syntax is different from the spoken language, but its a complete language. Deaf people are proud of their culture, They are not oralists; they do not use speech to communicate and do not consider Deafness a disability.

Deaf people often live in the same area, perhaps where there is a school for the Deaf, say Belleville in Ontario, or Gallaudet in the USA. So perhaps where you used to live there was a school, or social club, and there isnt one where you live now?

People who are deaf, no capital d, usually have some residual hearing and rely on lip reading to communicate. This is difficult to do and in English only 30-40% of words can be made out, so you rely on context and guess work to decide what has been said. Its made harder if the speaker mumbles, speaks quickly, covers their mouth, has facial hair, has the light behind them, etc etc. You can also be called deafened, hard of hearing, having a hearing loss, having a hearing impairment.

I am profoundly deaf ie I was hearing and now its mostly gone. I can make out around 8% of words if I cant see the speakers face. I dont use sign language, I did consider learning it but there's little point when I dont know anyone that uses it. I do use finger spelling which helps me interpret the lip shapes.

I agree with HWP that its harder to be deaf in Britain than in Canada. Here people are more willing to repeat themselves a few times until you can understand whats being said, they are much kinder about it and generally dont treat you like an idiot. Believe me I ask often, I have had to learn to lipread in Canadian, I dread to think how hard it was for HWP in England trying to learn English lipshapes and sounds.
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 9:15 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

In our area of Milton, ON, one of our local highschools is split, it is partially a high school, and partially a school for the deaf, and they share facilities. As such there is a large deaf community in the area, a number of local roads have signs up saying "Dead child playing", to let you know that they may not hear your car or your horn, so to take extra caution.
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 9:16 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

Originally Posted by cov-canuck View Post
In our area of Milton, ON, one of our local highschools is split, it is partially a high school, and partially a school for the deaf, and they share facilities. As such there is a large deaf community in the area, a number of local roads have signs up saying "Dead child playing", to let you know that they may not hear your car or your horn, so to take extra caution.
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 9:32 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

There is a large school for the deaf here in Winnipeg,.

http://www.msd.winnipeg.mb.ca/
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 9:50 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

I once saw a group of Deaf people at Victoria train station in London. One was on the mezzanine level by WH Smiths leaning over and happily having a converstaion with someone over the other side of the station ! I guess using sign language can have its advantages in a crowded place!
I also used to get the train to work along with the local college students. There was one group who were obviously on some kind of support program as they obviuosly had severe learning problems , what fascinated me thougn was one boy whomused to talk to himself , except he was deaf so he used to sign to himself.!
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 10:13 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

Originally Posted by hot wasabi peas View Post
I am hard of hearing and have lived in both places.

I found that being HoH in Britain much, much, much more difficult than in Canada. So much so that it was a significant factor in my decision to come back to Canada. Some days were an absolute nightmare.
Brits also tend to use much more slang which must have meant double trouble for you.
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 10:21 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

Originally Posted by MB-Realtor View Post
There is a large school for the deaf here in Winnipeg,.

http://www.msd.winnipeg.mb.ca/
Hmm,, mayne there are just avoiding you!!!
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 10:24 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

Originally Posted by daft batty View Post
Hmm,, mayne there are just avoiding you!!!
No, you've got me backwards it was me saying I see/interact more Here in Winnipeg with deaf people than in the UK.
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 10:47 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

Originally Posted by MB-Realtor View Post
No, you've got me backwards it was me saying I see/interact more Here in Winnipeg with deaf people than in the UK.
Ah, trust me to be backwards. I get your point now. Apologies
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 11:07 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

I don't know any deaf people here but I do notice that there is far less signed stuff on TV. In fact I'm not sure I've seen anything here? Could be I'm watching the wrong channels, we only have over the air stations, but still. In the UK I remember news being signed/subtitled, lots of CBeebies kids stuff being signed, See Hear of course, and also there were special needs programmes like "Something Special" for kids using Makaton.

I've had a look at closed captions here and they're pretty bad, I'd guess it was all done by computer with no regard for accuracy. I know British subtitles were poor sometimes too but that was only usually with live programmes, pre-recorded programmes were usually spot-on.

Last edited by Biiiiink; Jun 12th 2008 at 11:09 pm.
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 11:20 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

Originally Posted by daft batty View Post
Oh man...what a typo! deaF...deaF...otherwise that's pretty darn sick
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Old Jun 12th 2008, 11:27 pm
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Default Re: The Deaf in Canada,

Originally Posted by cov-canuck View Post
Oh man...what a typo! deaF...deaF...otherwise that's pretty darn sick

That has to be typo of the decade!!!!!

Thanks for the info Batty, I have to say I don't "know" anyone who is deaf - so have never really had the opportunity to see first hand how difficult some things can be, so my understanding is nil
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