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May 19, 2004

Straw Praises Sms Benefits for the Deaf

From: The Scotsman - Edinburgh,Scotland,UK - May 19, 2004

By Brian Farmer, PA News

Foreign Secretary Jack Straw today praised the advent of mobile phone texting because of the way it had revolutionised life for people with hearing difficulties.

Mr Straw, who is deaf in his right ear, said texting had given him "a new ear".

"For people with hearing problems texting has simply revolutionised life," he said during a visit to a learning centre for disabled people in Basildon, Essex.

"It's fantastic. I'm deaf in one ear and having text messages is like having a new ear.

"It must have bought enormous benefits for so many people with hearing problems."

Mr Straw was in Basildon campaigning for Labour in the run up to next months European and local elections.