Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Social Model: Unfit for purpose?

Related imageSome random posts from UK social media and online areas.

Twitter:  Social modelling, much used, much abused too.  I don't care for modelling its a political thing and doesn't add to access improvement, just inter-disabled disagreement, as many support the medical model as don't, and a lot who support both.  You don't need modelling to get a wider door fitted.

Twitter: The social model of disability has demonstrated political success for disabled people in society. At the same time, it has been labelled an outdated ideology in need of re-development. While the social model of disability has been used successfully for political activism, it has simultaneously created conflict and tensions in disability studies, sociology and the sociology of the body, and pitted disabled and deaf areas against each other, modelling emerging as the 'politics of the blame culture..'

Facebook on access:  There is room for videos for people who don't want sign etc, and the issues of hearing going deaf, is not understood at all by the cultural, or born deaf.  I wouldn't ask a born deaf person how to manage MY deafness because it is chalk and cheese and we don't want the same things or had the same experiences, we don't think their approach works for us either...  they need to stop quoting us as their endorsement.

Facebook role modelling: Instead of accepting these things  it provokes confrontations with representatives of the deaf culture accusing others of undermining them because they don't want CI's, don't want oral education etc, so mutual respect is suffering as each area fights own corner over silly things like role models etc and the medical labels and 'cure' research, which HoH endorse and the deaf do not as you feel it undermines what you think and believe is true for you.  

Twitter on sign language:  More sign use poses problems of unity, on other things like speech etc...  More sign, less talk, more isolation more myths the community can provide, just another negative and barrier for them.

Blogger on realism:  The deaf world may not revolve around speech but, the wider world does, so they need to understand how to cross and manage that divide.  Different strokes for different folks.    People have different views, it doesn't mean they are personal attacks on others who don't share those views.   We do live in a HEARING world not a deaf one, so practical consideration can override a 'preference' to sign, few deaf are actually bilingual, or want to be, and of course, true integration between non and signing deaf/HoH has problems. We don't see much conflict because mostly they tend to avoid each other.

Twitter on equality:  It is also true to say there are deaf people who would not accept equality with a bargepole unless on own terms, so some sort of parallel thing goes on they say isn't isolation but seems to be to everyone else.  Ask them to explain and they go defensive and respond with discrimination claims rather than listen.  They seem scared witless about inclusion and their inability to manage it.

'Tree House' site taken down.

It's taken some time, to see this happen, but it was reduced to 2/3 posters only and could not cope with the diverse/ contention views of commentators.  It deteriorated it into a ya-boo situation, which is the fate sadly of most UK deaf/hoh social media sites that attempt to include all views, it attracts extremists who want to dominate and bias output, whose posters then go at moderates.

Much in retrospect was done with naivete and wasn't able to cope with more direct points being made, TH tried to revert to the 'social angle' and people got banned, bored, or left as a result.  Most deaf UK sites on social media tend to be avoided for good reason, as either minor enclaves of mean-wells or direct bias, or some sort of old deaf pals club, it is a toss-up between earing wax removal options and rabid BSL only areas, we are just losing interest in them.  

Rank and file have abandoned them and just use mobiles to each other.  Frankly, there is no way to be social or debate an issue on these sites. They are unable to include diversity, and none have a moderator who knows what they are doing much.

We include one comment from ATR itself who was a member there, (Which at the start was a great site to be with), and included one of the issues Sara faced, (Taken from the AOHL main website forum 2015..).  We had respect for Sara but she faced a lot of bad posts and wasn't able to cope with it all. We felt she excluded the only people making real points in the end.  She treated most of us OK, but it just deteriorated to meanderings about wandering around stately homes, or entirely London based postings by 1 person and 1 venue ads only.  I believe she thought to raise issues on a peaceful level but was ill-prepared for their vociferous diverse views that ensued and her health suffered.  I thought TH had already closed.

"Yes it was a great pity the TREE HOUSE facebook page had to complain about much of the SignVideo output being inaccessible via titles. HI/deaf were not getting dual/equal access, only signed access... making viewing pointless. 

This site (Tree House), is now targeting ALL BSL video output that is not captioned as not adhering to the spirit of deaf access fairly. It's no good AOHL joining the TV campaigns on subtitling whilst ignoring public health awareness output. The ATR blogger had also complained at length to Welsh council/health/NHS public informational videos being also inaccessible via subtitling, with BSL interpreters being an active part of the exclusion process. 

If deaf awareness doesn't start with them, where does it ? Why hasn't AOHL Cymru taken this issue to task ? Carmarthen local Authorities are continually abusing our access with their help."

That post however atypically triggered a lot of nastiness from the BSL activist sector who accused Tree House, ATR, and its members of discrimination and anti-deaf rhetoric. Which of course was ridiculous.  They were debating equalities of access provision, what Sara wanted. However, it DID have the desired effect intended by those extremes of bringing down the deaf and HoH moderate view.

Tree House has now finally been felled, sad.  I have good memories at the start of it.  To list the deaf social media sites to be avoided would probably include 80% of them, it's really a poor situation for anyone deaf who wants to know what is really going on.  In effect, it has driven them away from wanting to know, giving the extremes free reign...

Mental Health and the Deaf (UK).


Woman In Consultation with Doctor
The deaf community struggles daily with stigma, prejudice, and communication, but that's not all: medical studies have found that deaf people suffer from mental health issues at about twice the rate of the general population, and also have real problems accessing needed mental health services. 


The mental health issues common in the deaf community include depression, anxiety and severe illnesses such as bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Mental illnesses are compounded in the deaf community by difficulties communicating with care providers — researchers have found that lip-reading isn't adequate, interpreters who know sign language are scarce, and many diagnostic tools depend on knowledge that's not common among those who are deaf. Mental Health in the Deaf Community Lots of people have some hearing loss — between 15% and 26% of the population, according to one study. 

But it's a different issue to be profoundly deaf, especially if you became deaf before you had a chance to learn spoken language. About seven in every 10,000 people fall into this category, and most regard themselves as a cultural minority that uses sign language instead of spoken language. Struggles to function in a hearing world can lead to mental health issues. 

In one study involving hearing impaired individuals, some 41% said they believed that communication problems coupled with family stresses and overall prejudice could cause or contribute to suicidal depression, substance abuse or violent behaviour in some cases. Other studies have found that about one-quarter of deaf students have learning difficulties, developmental delay, visual impairment, or autism. 

Deaf children who have trouble communicating with their families are four times more likely to be affected by mental health disorders than deaf children who have few or no problems communicating with family members. Bullying of deaf children also may be common at school, and deaf boys and girls are much more likely to be victims of sexual assault. Communication Needed, but Scarce Mental health services are difficult for deaf people to access. One small study involving 54 people found that more than half hadn't been able to find mental health services that they, as deaf people, could use. 

In addition, psychiatric conditions such as mood disorders are frequently under-diagnosed in the deaf community, in large part due to communication difficulties that include: few experienced interpreters between English and sign language problems in translation between spoken and sign language differences in how deaf people display feelings and perceive mental health Reading and writing aren't an adequate substitute for spoken language in this context. 

Hearing loss interferes quite a lot with vocabulary, and so many deaf high school graduates read and write at a grade-school level. In addition, lip-reading is far from 100% accurate — the average deaf adult can lip-read only 26% to 40% of speech.

Teacher: Not my job to prevent deaf abuse...

The teacher at the Donaldson Trust in Linlithgow is claimed to have said it was not her place to stop the abuse
A teacher at the Donaldson Trust in Linlithgow is claimed to have said it was not her place to stop the abuse. The teacher at the Donaldson Trust in Linlithgow claimed it was not her place to stop the abuse.


A senior teacher who ran Scotland’s deaf school while bosses were investigated for failing to protect pupils has herself been accused of failing to act over claims of sexual assault. Carol Binnie was made acting head of Donaldson’s School in Linlithgow in 2013 while two members of staff were suspended and under investigation. 

She has been accused of “failing to take . . . and ensure that appropriate actions was taken in respect of allegations of physical and sexual assault of pupils”.