A deaf campaigner is taking legal action against the government, complaining that it failed to provide in-person British Sign Language (BSL) interpreters at Covid briefings, BBC News reports.
Katherine Rowley, 36, from Leeds, says the government breached its obligations under the Equality Act to its make broadcasts accessible to deaf people.
She says the failure to convey vital facts led to “stress and frustration.”
The government responded that it was “committed to supporting disabled people.” A spokesperson said BSL interpretation of the coronavirus briefings was available on the BBC News Channel and BBC iPlayer, which could be accessed via Freeview. “We continue to work across government to ensure that information and guidance is fully accessible,” he added.
Ms. Rowley was 25 weeks pregnant when she started the claim for a Judicial Review, which will focus on two Covid briefings in September and October of 2020.
During those two briefings there was no sign language interpreter at all, either in person or superimposed by broadcasters.
She says the stress she suffered in being unable to access government information during the briefing, impacted her pregnancy and her well-being.