Hearing A–Z

There’s a health crisis but where are the captions in Government announcements?

It is frustrating and dangerous that captions are increasingly NOT being included in the Government’s emergency and disaster announcements when they appear on TV replays and  social media.

More than 1 million Australians rely on captions every day, and there are countless more who can benefit from captions when they find themselves in busy and loud environments.

It is great to see that Auslan interpreters are being included in emergency and disaster broadcasts for the 10,000 people in Australia whose first language is Auslan.

But all government announcements no matter how they are delivered must have BOTH an Auslan interpreter and Open Captions – these are captions that are a permanent feature of a video, meaning that you can’t switch them off so they will appear in any replays of the original broadcast, including social media.

The best thing we can do as a community is to add a comment to every Government video we see on social media when captions aren’t there – “where are the captions?” And tell your friends to do the same.

Local companies that offer captioning services do not support our work in promoting the need for universal captioning. Fair enough: they can sit back and let us do the heavy lifting because we must as advocates. But just so they know, we’re onto them now.

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