Sunday, 19 August 2018

The truth the whole truth and?

Image result for the truth and nothing butIn order to clarify claims by BSL groups regarding sign and deafness, here is a valid breakdown of the neutral statistical gathering of fact by the system in Wales, gathered by ATR and sourced with official agencies.

Hearing Aids:

50% of people who had some form of hearing in Wales, have never tried a hearing aid.

45% of people who did wear a hearing aid, still have trouble hearing.

Hearing Loss:

16% of welsh have hearing issues. (currently, the population is 3,060,000 approx).

More men have issues with hearing loss than women, but the difference is just 1%

Deaf with speech 1,539 (Another welsh statistic is 1,644 to include sight/other issues)

Deaf without speech 725. (Same source as above is 710)

Support defined need:

As listed on Local Authority need registers, it is 13,480 (To include any and all other disability/health/learning disability issues).


Deaf: People who even with a hearing aid have little or no useful hearing.  This is a definition based on hearing ability, and NOT choice of language.  It includes the 'cultural deaf', BSL users, not identified specifically as the same grouping, stats don't cover actual comms usage as regards to daily or sole reliance, and others with alterntaive modes of communications (Unstated).

How are stats gathered and by what systems:

Statistical registers of hearing loss come under section 29 of the National Assistance Act 1948, (but registration is entirely voluntary), actual take-up of support doesn't appear to have an actual statistic, so we don't know if all who registered are asking for it, or, even still alive in some cases. Localised computer systems don't check if the deaf are still alive, or even living in the same area.

Who do they ask:

National surveys statistical gathering now will focus on just 11,000 selected people across Wales (2017/18).

Where are the facts located:

The number of identified BSL terps in Wales 30. Statistics show  3,000 deaf. 1 terp for 100 deaf approx. 

Charitable stats.

AOHL Formerly (Or not!), the RNID, states 575,000 with hearing loss in Wales, mirroring the 16% stat, that does not mean they are all deaf. 

*There is confusion who is supplying actual stats, aka, if it is health/system areas, or (as the Welsh Assembly states on its site), the charities themselves who are supplying those stats to them.  Technically they should not be accepting statistics from charities with bias and no actual proof of research. The statistics appear a confused mish-mash of both systems.


Predominantly the BDA, as are the AOHL major charities, are unable to verify actual stats of BSL users because the data protection law forbids them asking individuals what they use, this would mean identifying them and checking it out.  The UK Census didn't ask that question in any detail.

Statistical gathering issues:

The Welsh health statistical systems do not separate BSL/Cultural usage from any other hearing loss statistic, (at least that is the claim! but their own site says differently, and there are cross issues between the official health stats and the inclusion/equality sections of the Assembly which are conflicting with each other). 

A cursory search of the official Welsh assembly sites ATR found deafness listed under 11 alternative health/disability headings, and the site itself was unable to be accurately used because of the inclusion of the D/d thing and the inability of the site search options to differentiate grammatically between the two, which suggests statistics may be wholly inaccurate or even currently impossible to validate in terms of getting any sort of 'BSL' accuracy.  

ATR's validated official links listed 3 major and official Welsh Assembly/Health sources.  Charity sources were too suspect and ATR wanted to present neutral sources.. It does appear official 'sources' don't discriminate enough to get any accuracy, leaving all the estimates, guesswork, statistics and accompanied bias to charities and activism.

The issue was also marred by 'preference'/choice/culture/language' being used, to blur actual and defined need. Need and choice are not the same things but the stats were unable to differentiate, because alternative support areas support both or either, depending on own areas of interest.

Daily usage reliance of BSL is still undefined, could be more could be a lot less..  Wales has no deaf schools, and few hearing support units, most are mainstreamed.

1,100 were listed as BSL using here via the Welsh census, 1 in 3 deaf signing.  ATR defies anyone to validate anything.