We loved being part of Loose Women’s special Deaf Awareness Week episode. Our Development Officer Shona Whieldon shares what it was like to be part of the audience.
During Deaf Awareness Week, Loose Women aired their first fully accessible episode for deaf people and people with hearing loss, with Rose Ayling-Ellis joining as a special panel member.
RNID was delighted to support Loose Women in the run up to Deaf Awareness Week by providing advice on how to make the episode accessible. This led Loose Women to provide live captions for the audience and an in-vision signer on ITV 1. The show was also accessible with BSL interpreters for the audience, and subtitles available to viewers at home.
The audience for the special episode was made up of deaf people and people with hearing loss, including our Development Officer Shona, a big fan of the show. She said:
“I felt honoured to be part of this special episode. Being profoundly deaf myself, it was an even more meaningful experience.
“It was so good to see Rose talking about everyday issues that deaf people face like dinner table syndrome and I was agreeing with everything that she was saying – the majority of the audience was too!
“It was absolutely fantastic to be part of the special episode which was filmed for the first time with interpreters and live captions.
“It was brilliant to see such a well-known daytime TV programme discuss issues like deaf awareness, mental health in the Deaf community, getting your hearing checked and the stigma around hearing aids. Like Rose said, it’s like going for an eye test and then being prescribed glasses, hearing aids should be the same and people shouldn’t be embarrassed about them!
“It would be brilliant if Loose Women made Rose a regular panellist, so she could continue to campaign about deaf awareness on a well-known programme, and why not? Overall it was a fantastic experience and me and mum are so glad we were part of it”.