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Halton Regional Police Service now equipped with ClearMasks

The wearing of face coverings/masks is known to pose a significant barrier to the Deaf community, as masks make it harder to lip read and understand sign language. To better serve the demographics of our community, while continuing to mitigate the transmi​ssion of COVID-19, Halton Regional Police Service officers are now equipped with ClearMasks™. "Our ability to communicate with the members of our community is absolutely essential," says Halton Regional Police Service Deputy Chief Roger Wilkie. "With guidance and input from the Bob Rumball Centre of Excellence for the Deaf, we have now removed a significant communications barrier." "By introducing ClearMasksTM within Halton Regional Police Service, anyone from the Deaf community can now have more accessible dialogue with police officers," says Jayne Leang, Director of Business Relations at the Bob Rumball Canadian Centre of Excellence for the Deaf. "In an emergency situation, allowing a person who is Deaf or hard-of-hearing the opportunity to see the officer's facial expression or attempt to read their lips, helps in the exchange of potentially life-saving information." These Health Canada-approved masks feature a transparent window, allowing the mouth to be fully protected, while fully visible, for those who use speech reading, lip reading or who are profoundly deaf and use American Sign Language, which is heavily dependent on facial expressions.​​

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