I was just looking at the Access to work pages on gov.uk and I noticed a link for a Blind Person's Allowance (Tax Allowance). So I had a look and then I wondered 'why isn't there something similar to that for us'. Any ideas?
Unfortunately, tax allowance would be impossible to administer because unfortunately there is no national register of people who are deaf or have hearing loss.
Previously, under Section 29 of the National Assistance Act 1948, local authorities were required by law to maintain a register of people with hearing loss, sight loss and dual sensory loss in their local area. This requirement was repealed and replaced by Part 1 of the Care Act 2014. Under Care Act, local authorities are now required to maintain a register of people with sight loss only. Local authorities can still maintain a register of people with other conditions if they wish (some still do), but this is no longer a statutory requirement.
Local authorities are required to report data from sight loss registers to the Department of Health under the SSDA902 statutory return. National data collection for deafness and hearing loss registers (SSDA910) was discontinued in 2010. The final data collection from 2010 can be found here: https://digital.nhs.uk/catalogue/PUB00594
I hope this makes sense
Rachel on behalf of the Information Line
If I had one wish for the day, it would be to make every hearing person be deaf or hearing impaired to such a degree that they would begin to appreciate what life is like for a person who wears hearing aids or lip reads or uses Sign Language. The people who think that even a small hearing loss is 'not a problem' should have to suffer longer this temporary deafness and if they start to forget or carry on treating the real hearing impaired or deaf people poorly again, then they should temporarily lose their hearing until they jolly well understand the difficulties we face. A bit like putting someone on the naughty step and ignoring them while all the other children carry on playing and enjoying themselves. Just then, just maybe, we might get a level understanding and treated as equals. I didn't know that there was no national deaf register - I work for a local authority and there's definitely a Sensory Team recording deafness as well as blindness. And I don't normally get this cross but this takes the biscuit.
The fact is we don't get tax concessions because nobody has campaigned for them. Most deaf charities are focussed on helping deaf people with day to day matters rather than campaigning for changes to the law. It is a different matter for blind people because they are well able to communicate their problems and to stick together. It is only since the Internet that deaf people became able to talk to one another remotely, previously we had to do everyting by letter or fax.
It is only recently that the BDA has become a campaigning charity and unfortunately they are only interested in Deaf people rather than all deaf people. For those who don't know the use of the capital D denotes that it is political. Like Conservative and conservative or Labour and labour the word Deaf indicates that the person politically supports the use of BSL. The point here is that the BDA is tiny. It only represents signing deaf, nowadays the smallest group in the deaf world. Not the great majority of ordinary deaf people. So they remain small and ineffective..
This is quite a coherent campaign because they are all working together but the rest of the deaf world has proved itself completely incapable of working together in this way. They would rather squabble and argue and play naughty online power games, or stabbing each other in the back. Trying to establish any kind of cohesion is like herding cats.