It’s the Bill you’ve all been waiting for (at the bottom of the article). Here is the Communications Support (Deaf People) Bill that is due to be debated in Parliament on Friday 25th October .. if there’s time.
It is the third piece of business on the order paper for the day’s parliamentary business and needs to have its second reading before 3pm when MPs head off for the weekend (if they hadn’t already) or its over.
If it is debated, then it needs to be voted through and even then Ministers still need to allocate time for the Bill to be debated further, which will only happen if the government think it should.
The signs are good though that the government may be in a mood to listen. The new Minister for Disabled people, Mike Penning, is keeping his predecessors promise to meet Sir Malcolm Bruce to talk about the bill, even though he’s just got the job. He would be well within his rights to cancel and set his own agenda.
Deaf issues are said to be of importance to Mr Penning because he is deaf in one ear and he used to have a deaf girlfriend. He could be willing to take forward certain aspects of the Bill, like a review of communication support for deaf people, if he doesn’t want to go the whole hog and support the creation of a Council for Communication Support, which makes up the bulk of Sir Malcolm’s Bill.
Campaigners from various deaf organisations are meeting MPs in Westminster today to explain the need for the Communication Support Bill and encourage them to support it next Friday.
By Andy Palmer, Deputy Editor (@LC_AndyP)
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