Accessible Programming for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Community Through Captioning

Share Article

The Hearing and Speech Agency partners with Maryland Public Television and The Village of Cross Keys to host the only captioned outdoor film festival in Baltimore this summer and to provide closed captioned local television programs.

movie festival with open captions accessible to the Deaf community

Logo for The Village of Cross Keys MovieFest

We were already excited to be able to host a large outdoor screening because it promotes our mission and our work so well, but to be able to have open captions is what HASA is all about: clear and accessible communication for everyone.

When The King's Speech was released last year, few were as excited as the professional team and clients of The Hearing and Speech Agency (HASA). After all, the film chronicles one man's struggle to communicate and his relationship with his speech language therapist. For a team of language and communication professionals, there was no better film to win the Academy Award for Best Picture.

This excitement was tempered by the fact that some of HASA's staff and constituents -many of whom are Deaf or hard of hearing - had difficulty finding a convenient captioned screening of the film. That will change on June 18, when the movie will be shown as part of The Village of Cross Keys MovieFest, which is the only outdoor movie festival in Baltimore with open captions. This year's theme is Academy Award Winners; the films will be shown every Saturday in June. The line-up is: Shakespeare in Love (June 4), The Blind Side (June 11), The King's Speech (June 18), and Slumdog Millionaire (June 25).

This will mark the second year that The Hearing and Speech Agency has partnered with The Village of Cross Keys to present the film festival, but there is additional enthusiasm about it this year. "We were already excited to be able to host a large outdoor screening of the The King’s Speech, because it promotes our mission and our work so well," states John Sloan, Director of The Center for Fluency Enhancement at The Hearing and Speech Agency. "But to be able to have it with open captions - well, that is what The Hearing and Speech Agency is all about: clear and accessible communication for everyone."

HASA has also just entered into a partnership with Maryland Public Television to help provide closed captions for their locally-produced programs. The Hearing and Speech Agency's mission and web address will be listed in the production credits of programs created by MPT. "Partnering with Maryland Public Television makes perfect sense. Viewers who need captioning are the very people who are interested in programs and services that we can provide," says Tammy Black, Director of Communications at The Hearing and Speech Agency.

About The Village of Cross Keys MovieFest: The month-long series of free movies is sponsored by the shops and restaurants of Cross Keys with support from The Hearing and Speech Agency, Urbanite and WYPR 88.1 FM. Festivities begin each Saturday evening at 6:00 pm with pre-movie dinner specials offered at each of the Cross Keys restaurants. Many of the retail shops will be open extended hours and many stores will offer shopping specials. Showtime for the free movies is sunset. Guests are invited to bring their own lawn chairs or blankets; limited seats will be provided.

About The Hearing and Speech Agency: HASA is a private non-profit organization that offers audiology, speech-language, special education and interpreting services to more than 4,000 children and adults each year. Services include hearing tests, pre- and post-cochlear implant services, hearing aids, hearing aid repair; speech-language evaluation and therapy, auditory-oral therapy; oral deaf education, occupational and physical therapy; special education, sign language and oral interpreting, American Sign Language classes deaf awareness seminars, social work and parent support groups.

###

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Tammy Black, Director of Communications
Visit website