Interacting with Drivers who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing #7887 (TCOLE)

By Karen Wannamaker, Police Training Weekly | Thu, 9 Jun 2016

North American Peace Officers are in daily contact with all types of people, and many have disabilities that create communications challenges for officers. A growing number of these challenging encounters are with individuals that are deaf or hard of hearing. Dr. David Salmon, of OSS Academy® tells us that statistics show nearly 10% of the U.S. population has some sort hearing loss and that this percentage is continuing to grow as so-called baby boomers mature into their senior years. Even more disturbing, the National Institute of Deafness and Other Communication Disorders reported recently that about 15% of Americans (26 million) between the ages of 20 and 69 have high frequency hearing loss due to exposure to noise at work and increasingly listening to loud entertainment devices and events.

Dr. Salmon explained that the Americans with Disabilities Act requires that people who are deaf or hard of hearing should be given the same services provided to the other 90% of the population, and these individuals may not be excluded or segregated from citizens needing enforcement services. This law required officers may have to provide extended support to hearing impaired individuals  whether they are stopped for a minor offense or locked up in a jail. Such services can range from furnishing a note pad and pen to calling for a Signer.

To address the growing problem, the Texas Legislature enacted Senate Bill 1987 last year that amended the Transportation and Occupation Codes requiring that all Texas Peace Officers receive specialized training to aid officers in improving communications with those that are challenged by deaf and hearing loss.

Unfortunately the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE) mandated Interacting with Drivers who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing #7887 course will not be available (in an online format) and must be completed in an instructor-led setting.

For an instructor-led course location resource contact our Training Coordinator or call 281-288-9190 (Ext. 205). Additionally, sign up for the OSS Academy Newsletter for up-to-date course offerings and information.

enroll_buttonA sample of our TCOLE Courses Listing:

About OSS Academy

To learn more about OSS Academy® contact our Training Coordinator at 281-288-9190 (Ext. 205).