November 3, 2023
For Immediate Release: November 3, 2023
Mills Administration Shares National Best Practices When Reporting On and For the Deaf Community
AUGUSTA - Ahead of President Joe Biden's visit to Lewiston on Friday, and for reporting going forward, the Maine Departments of Labor and Health and Human Services are sharing guidelines, tips, and best practices for members of the media to consider to ensure information is accessible to all members of the public.
The National Association of the Deaf (NAD) provides guidelines and tips - https://www.nad.org/about-us/position-statements/guidelines-for-media-portrayal-of-the-deaf-community/ , which includes information on appropriate terminology, accessibility, and portrayals of Deaf individuals.
The following practices, adapted from NAD - https://www.nad.org/about-us/position-statements/position-statement-on-accessible-emergency-management-for-deaf-and-hard-of-hearing-people/ , are recommended when broadcasting to ensure access for individuals who are Deaf and hard of hearing.
At all times during a video broadcast:
It is critical to ensure a highly qualified sign language interpreter is always visible in the broadcast next to the individuals speaking.
A Medium 2 shot should be used of both the public official and the sign language interpreter standing next to each other in the video frame.
High-quality captioning should be provided and should not conflict with or cover the interpreter or other text, such as a scrolling marquee, crawl, or lower-third (or vice versa).
On re-broadcasts and internet broadcasts, ensure all captioning and interpreting services are visible and not distorted. For any media displayed on the internet:
Embed subtitles and the sign language interpreter into a single video so captions or interpreters cannot be cut out in re-broadcasts or Internet streaming.
In the alternative, provide XML files (Flash videos) or VTT (HTML5 videos) with the caption file copied.