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Large Area Assistive Listening Systems

5.1 Public Notification of Availability

People have to know that ALS are available before they attend a performance or lecture and where to get them once they enter the facility. While some of these suggestions are already in place (e.g. some newspaper advertisements, signage in facilities), their practice is not universal or standardized. We recommend that all venues providing ALS comply with the following:

  • Newspaper advertisements should include notification that the venue provides an ALS. This notification should be of the same order of visibility and location as information regarding other attributes of a performance (“Dolby Sound”, etc.). Eventually, with public education, printing the international symbol of “communication access” would be sufficient (much like the CC symbol signified “closed captioning”).
  • Recorded telephone information from movie houses and theatres should include a comment that ALS are available for people with hearing loss.
  • The “leader” preceding the show in movie houses should include information re: the availability and location of the assistive listening device receivers.
  • At the entrance to each venue, there should be clear and visible signs indicating that ALS are available and where the receivers can be obtained. Furthermore, the sign should identify specific frequency employed by the FM or IR system. This information would be valuable for consumers who desire to employ a personal receiver.

5.2. Distributing Receivers

  • The same individual in the same physical location in a venue should be responsible for both checking in and checking out of the receivers.
  • This individual should be trained to operate and troubleshoot the ALS receivers. Their responsibilities include:
    • Inserting rechargeable batteries into battery recharger after each performance.
    • Verifying that disposable batteries are functional prior to each performance.
    • Performing a “listening test” on all receivers prior to checking them out.
    • Assist listeners in selecting the appropriate coupling arrangement (headphones, neckloop, earbuds, etc.). Briefly instruct users in how to operate the receiver. A simple instructional card can be provided to consumers when necessary.
    • Taking appropriate hygienic measures after receivers are returned (e.g. spraying or wiping foam cushions with an antiseptic solution and replacing disposable cushions).