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Town Hall Meeting - VRS

Town Hall Meeting

Topic: VRS and IP-Relay issues presented by the BC-VRS Committee
Date: Thursday, Feb. 3, 2011
Time: 6:30-9:30 pm
Location: Room 1614, Douglas College, New Westminster, BC

They will share Committee, Telus-Sorenson VRS Trial, and IP-Relay Updates and Information.

This would be for advanced ASL students.  There are no interpreters.

Video Relay Service Trial - Important Meeting!
On June 8, 2010 at 7:00 p.m. there will be a presentation by Telus and Sorenson regarding the VRS trial. 

Metrotown Hilton Hotel
6083 MacKay Ave
Burnaby, BC
Interpeters and DIs provided.
More information can be found at http://deafbc.ca/ by clicking in the sidebar.

For the ASL students, you may not have used or seen the VRS in use. Through the VRS, Deaf communicate directly with one another or with hearing family, friends, medical professionals and businesses with the assistance of an interpreter. The interpreter is seen on the screen signing and is in contact with the hearing person via a headset.  Some background information is in the subpage Town Meeting below.  Please help get this information to all your friends and contacts in the Deaf Community.  VRS is well established in the US.  Canadians have piggy backed on that service but the connections have been inconsistent.  This would provide service to the Canadian Deaf Community through Telus's application to the CRTC.

Go to http://deafbc.ca/archives/3165 for video to see Monty Hardy's presentation in ASL.

posted Jan 15, 2010 1:10 PM by Daun Eby
This meeting was held on January 14, 2010 at Douglas College.  There were approximately 80 to 100 people in attendance.  Although there wasn't a plan to have an interpreter, someone jumped in and offered her services.  During the first half of the meeting, I couldn't hear the interpreter and my ASL skills are not adequate to keep up.  Hopefully, that gives me a better understanding of the Deaf perspective--when the shoe is on the other foot.  The discussion of the ICED conference was first and I took a couple of quick notes below.  I moved closer to the interpreter during the VRS discussion.

Some Highlights of the ICED Document (from my jotted notes):
        • acknowledge the ruinous effect of the Milan Conference of 1880
        • accept the UN and WFD resolutions to accept sign languages as a human right
        • sign languages to be recognized as official languages around the world
        • Deaf citizens are to be included in all government programs affecting them
        • involve Deaf in assisting parents of Deaf babies and children
For more information on the ICED conference go to the link in the sidebar.

What I managed to get out of the meeting is that there will be a test of the Telus VRS starting this Spring.  Participants must have a Telus high speed internet connection.  People wanted to know what would happen if they had other services such as Rogers.  Telus made their proposal to the CRTC.  They were the only company that did so.  As a result, Telus is the only one with this new program.  People need to let the other service providers know that they want the same VRS.  Telus will be using Sorenson because they are set up and ready to go.  People are hoping that they will use BC interpreters but not all of the details are known as yet.  A ten-digit IP number will be permanent rather than changing all the time. There will be a group of Deaf people who are picked by a lottery system in BC and Alberta to take part in the test which will last approximately one year.  If chosen, people are encouraged to use the VP as much as possible to indicate the need in the Deaf community.  They will start with a core group and that number will grow to include more people.  I don't know what the timeline is for that.

If people have any questions, I would suggest that that they contact Monte Hardy hardy63@live.com