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June 16, 2003


From: Nottingham Evening Post, UK - Jun 16, 2003

Nottingham Deaf Society was being honoured today for training all its employees in sign language.

The organisation wants all its staff to be fluent in sign language and has won an Investors in People Award for their efforts. George Reynolds, chief executive of the Society, said: "The big difference with our organisation is we expect our employees to become fluent in British Sign Language on top of their other skills. That has a major impact on our training and support work."

It usually takes at least three years to become fluent in sign language.

Two employees who joined the organisation had to learn from scratch. They have just taken the tests for the equivalent of an NVQ Level 2.

The group also has five full-time interpreters. There are only around 200 sign language interpreters in the whole country.

Five of the 20-strong staff are deaf and can sign already and another eight have a deaf relative and already knew some sign language when they joined.

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