Television: Disability

Department for Culture Media and Sport written question – answered on 2nd July 2015.

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Photo of Nigel Dodds Nigel Dodds Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Reform and Constitutional Issues), Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Foreign Affairs), DUP Westminster Leader

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions he has held with television broadcasters on improving services for people with sensory loss.

Photo of Ed Vaizey Ed Vaizey Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy (Jointly with Department for Business, Innovation and Skills), Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy (Jointly with Department for Culture Media and Sport)

The UK is a world leader in the extent and the quality of TV access services, which include subtitles, audio description and signing. UK broadcasters and content providers are committed to meeting the needs of disabled people and want to ensure that this remains the case in the future.

Sections 303 to 305 of the Communications Act 2003 require Ofcom to draw up a Code which provides guidance as to the extent to which television services should provide access services. Ofcom monitors the provision of access services and publishes reports reflecting licensees’ performance against the target. Ofcom has the power to take action against broadcasters who fail to meet their target.

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