A profoundly deaf man has become a successful and popular taxi driver, working for Pride Executive Cars in Derby.
It is believed that he may be the first deaf taxi driver in the UK, using specialised software to communicate with the offices and clients, and driving a taxi with notices informing passengers that he is deaf.
Muneeb Ahmed (25), from Burton, had been struggling to find work, but finally secured the job despite one of the senior partners, Diane Finney, originally opposing his appointment. She was not the only staff member who felt this way, but the company owner, Mohammed Yasin, lent his full support to Mr. Ahmed.
In spite of these all too familiar oppositions, Mr. Ahmed has gone on to become one of the most popular drivers within the company.
He admitted that it was difficult in the beginning, as he got to grips with the software which would connect him to the office controller and help him navigate, and also started to develop customer service skills.
He said, “When I first started to work, I was so confused and found it very difficult in my first week. I was very nervous but the controller always helped me a lot and it made things a lot easier for me.”
“I had to be strong and positive at first but, after a few months, I started to feel great and connect with the staff.”
Initially, a few customers found cause for complaint, but now many clients will ask specifically for Mr. Ahmed.
Diane Finney said; “When I heard a deaf driver was coming, I was very doubtful and, in the first few weeks, there were a few complaints.
“But now he is one of our best drivers and he has proved me totally wrong.”
Here is a response in the local press to this story: http://www.derbytelegraph.co.uk/s-hoping-Muneeb-successful-career/story-20947645-detail/story.html (with thanks to Alison Hicking)
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