Deaf Women Against Violence & WISE Women – Group Award Nominee – 2006

The ‘Deaf Women Against Violence’ Group has worked with WISE Women to raise awareness of violence against women within the Deaf community and to improve access to services for Deaf women. The group has produced a brilliant and unique information pack for Deaf women, which was launched in May 2006. The pack contains six leaflets: Bullying and Harassment; Child Sexual Abuse; Domestic Abuse; Personal Safety; Prostitution; Rape and Sexual Violence. Some of these issues, most notably prostitution, have not been discussed extensively within the Deaf community, and so this has been a critical development in the debate about violence against women in this context. BSL is a language in itself, and it was therefore very challenging to provide literature which was accessible to the majority of Deaf women. All the leaflets give visual information in sign language and in accessible English, and are colour coded to assist women with little written English. This was pioneering work, and the result is a major achievement. It is planned to distribute the pack throughout Scotland.