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Wed Jan 30, 2019, 08:54 PM

A deaf couple said they asked for help from a Delta agent, but police were called instead

Source: Washington Post

A deaf couple said they asked for help from a Delta agent, but police were called instead

By Kristine Phillips January 30 at 4:29 PM

A deaf couple accused a Delta Air Lines staffer of discriminating against them by refusing to communicate with them in a way they would understand — in writing. Instead, the couple said, the staffer rolled her eyes, the situation escalated, police were called, and they never got on their flight.

Socorro Garcia and Melissa Yingst have threatened to sue and said Delta should train its employees on how to communicate with deaf passengers.

In a statement, Delta said: “We have reviewed the situation with our Detroit team and continue to work with these customers to better understand what transpired. We take situations like these very seriously and as part of our culture of continuous improvement, we are using this as an opportunity to learn.”

The dispute happened at the Detroit Metro Airport on Sunday night, when Garcia and Yingst, who were in Detroit for the National LGBTQ Task Force’s Create Change conference, were heading home to California. The women said they had initially been told they would be able to sit together, even though their assigned seats were apart. At the gate, they tried to communicate their request using an iPhone, but the agent kept talking and refused to write anything down, the couple said in a Facebook video recounting their experience.

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Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/transportation/2019/01/30/deaf-couple-said-they-asked-help-delta-agent-police-were-called-instead/

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Reply A deaf couple said they asked for help from a Delta agent, but police were called instead (Original post)
Eugene Jan 2019 OP
SWBTATTReg Jan 2019 #1

Response to Eugene (Original post)

Wed Jan 30, 2019, 10:33 PM

1. Sad. This form of discrimination happens in many ways against the deaf and profoundly ...

hard of hearing. Me, being 90% loss (r) and a 95% loss (l) of hearing have worked out w/ my neighbors if something should happen, that I'm deaf as a rock, should the police or fire show up at my house. I wouldn't be able to hear a fire break out and them breaking it should, heaven forbid something happen.

I remember one time the police had me sitting on the stoop of my home one time, and at the same time my SO came home and said, put your hearing aids in XXXXXX! I then did (for some reason, I didn't really understand what in the world was going on). At this point it became apparent to the police why I was playing the music so loud...simply to just hear it (neighbors had called and complained that I was playing it too loud one early evening). The vast majority of my neighbors know that I basically can't hear them (so if they say something behind my back, I'm not ignoring them, I just didn't hear them...you wouldn't believe how many people got offended when I didn't turn around and speak back to them, my SO told them he didn't hear you!).

That why I usually don't play anything volume wise on any TVs, etc. Besides not wanting to disturb my neighbors, I don't want to burn out the speakers as I have done on several of my TVs. Kind of ironic in that my house it is quiet as a church mouse...in that I wouldn't be able (and generally don't) hear anything. Thus, everything is set on lights, or I rely on my 3 dogs to alert me, and/or set on Closed Caption CC too.

I do dread the possibility of being pulled over and instructed by police to do something (and of course I wouldn't be able to hear them and comply w/ any instructions) and I would get shot. It's happened to others.
The airline clerk should have been more responsive and I hope the airline makes it right for the deaf couple.

Also just a helpful suggestion...if you have any deaf or profoundly hard of hearing friends, when they stop by for a visit, turn the TV volume down so it won't interfere w/ the ensuing communications and/or put the CC on the TV if need be (or turn off). The less feedback / noise in an environment makes it easier for us hard of hearing folks to try and discern what you are saying (verbally and/or non verbally (I read lips 1000%, so don't hide your mouth w/ hand gestures!)). Thanks!

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