In conjunction with Channel 7 the Deafness Council initiated the first live captioned news service in Australia and continue to campaign to increase closed captioning on the air and pay TV. Member John Byrne's actions to the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission led to captioned new release movies being shown in major city theatres throughout Australia.
Deafness Council campaigned to convince government to introduce newborn hearing screening and to encourage this to become universal in Western Australia. State government was lobbied to improve sound systems in remote community schools to assist students, particularly aboriginal students, to overcome difficulties and further lobbying of health funds helped improve benefits for people claiming hearing aid/cochlear expenses. The Council is actively lobbying the Federal Minister for Communications seeking his commitment to ensure that all emergency services announcements broadcast on television are open captioned, in addition to being Auslan interpreted. We are actively engaged in working with government to ensure that with the introduction of the NDIS, people who are Deaf or hard of hearing are provided with appropriate access to and supply of relevant support services.
Deafness Council participated in Hearing Awareness Week for the first time in 1979 and now annually promotes Hearing Awareness Week activities through awareness campaigns, participation, and launch activities.
The Harry Blackmore Award is an annual award given in recognition of the work done by an individual or organisation to improve the lives of our Deaf and Hard of Hearing community.
With the support of Santos Ltd, the Deafness Council are able to award a scholarship to Deaf / Hard of Hearing West Australian’s or groups.