Television (Disabled Access)

Culture Media and Sport written question – answered on 7th June 2004.

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Photo of Tom Levitt Tom Levitt PPS (Rt Hon Hilary Benn, Secretary of State), Department for International Development

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if she will take steps to encourage an increase in the proportion of television programmes subject to (a) subtitling, (b) signing and (c) audio description.

Photo of Ms Estelle Morris Ms Estelle Morris Minister of State (Arts), Department for Culture, Media & Sport, Minister of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport) (Arts)

The Communications Act 2003 provided for substantially increased access provision by broadcasters, including, for the first time, cable and satellite broadcasters. It is the responsibility of Ofcom to establish the code governing that increased provision. Following a recent consultation exercise, Ofcom expects to publish that code in the summer.

Within the context of planning for digital switchover, the Government have also had discussions with broadcasters to encourage them to increase the provision of audio description services across all digital platforms, including satellite and cable.

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