Unbelievably, a champion Deaf swimmer, who represented the UK at the World Deaf Swimming Champtionships, has been kicked off a lifeguard course in the third week of training for being deaf.
A champion swimmer and Commonwealth Games hopeful has been kicked off a lifeguard training course because he is deaf.
James Webster, 21, of Rossiter Road, Tooting, is a deaf competitor for Great Britain.
The rising star has dreams to compete in the Commonwealth Games and was hoping to fund his training by working as a lifeguard.
He enrolled on a National Pool Lifeguard Qualification (NPLQ) course at Tooting Leisure Centre last month, passing level one of the course within a few weeks.
But as he entered the third week of the course he was told by his tutor he could not continue, because he is deaf.
Instructors told him he would not be able to do the job as he would not be able to hear people breathing and would struggle to communicate with colleagues.
The Institute of Qualified Lifeguards said they cannot always accept candidates who have poor vision or hearing.
A publication by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) also states lifeguards must have good hearing.
Mr Webster, who communicates using sign language and lip reading, is now seeking legal advice.
Update: We have found a deaf lifeguard
— Ellie Gray (@EllieRAGray) September 3, 2013
@Limping_Chicken hi there u said about James deaf champion swimmer kicked off for lifeguard well I’m deaf and I’m a lifeguard in NZ
— Danielle Mackay (@DanielleMackay2) September 19, 2013
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