The Canadian National Society for the Deaf-Blind is very pleased to be able to offer access to the recently completed report, “Study of Deaf-Blind Demographics and Services in Canada”.
The following is a project overview of the national study. At the bottom of this page you can download the entire report in Microsoft Word format.
Canadian National Society of the Deaf-Blind
Canadian Deafblind and Rubella Association
“Study of Deaf-Blind Demographics
and Services in Canadian”
Deaf-Blindness, also known as dual-sensory impairment, multiple-sensory impairment and deaf/visually impaired, is a condition that combines any degree of hearing loss with any degree of vision loss that interferes with communicating and acquiring information.
With the help of Intervenors, dog guides, specialized housing and various technologies, people who are Deaf-Blind can function independently within Canadian society.
About the Study
* the study of Deaf-Blind Demographics and Services in Canada was funded by the Government of Canada’s Social Development Partnership Program.
(1) the study involved an equal partnership between the Canadian National Society of the Deaf-Blind and the Canadian Deafblind and Rubella Association
(2) the purpose of the study is to present information on:
i. the demographics of persons who are Deaf-Blind in Canada
ii. services that exist to meet the needs of persons who are Deaf-Blind and the service needs of persons who are Deaf-Blind and parents/advocates of those who are Deaf-Blind
iii. personal stories of the barriers and successes experienced by individuals who are Deaf-Blind and parents/advocates of persons who are Deaf-Blind
iv. recommendations for the future
The research located 3,306 Canadians who are Deaf-Blind, a number which is believed to underestimate the total number of persons with this disability, due to the difficulty in reaching this population. In addition to collecting demographic information, the researchers conducted 10 focus groups across the country. The findings of these focus groups concluded that consumers and parents/advocates identified a need for:
1. increased federal and provincial funding for Intervenor services for individuals who are Deaf-Blind to increase access to community services and improve their daily lives,
2. decreased waiting times for services,
3. provision of pools of Intervenors for whenever they need it, including evenings, weekends and vacations, as well as for medical and other emergencies,
4. increased federal and provincial funding for training programs for professionals working with persons who are Deaf-Blind, e.g teachers, social workers and Intervenors,
5. public awareness campaigns to highlight the needs and capabilities of persons who are Deaf-Blind,
6. assistive devices programs funded in part for government for people who are Deaf-Blind who are not currently involved in education or work,
7. increased access to training and assistive device technology to ensure the opportunity to live independently.
This research offers service providers valuable information about the demographics of Deaf-Blindness, increases awareness of the resource materials available from the Canadian Deaf-Blind Council, and allows the provincial and federal government to determine if available services are sufficient in quality and quantity to meet the needs of persons who are Deaf-Blind.
The findings also emphasize the need for increased Intervention Services across the country, initiatives to increase awareness of the needs of Canadians with congenital and acquired Deaf-Blindness and the need for additional assistive devices programs. Many Canadians with Deaf-Blindness remain unserved and are without communication assistance to participate fully within society.