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Telecommunications for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Inc., Formation of

  • By: James D. House
  • In: The SAGE Deaf Studies Encyclopedia
  • Edited by: Genie Gertz & Patrick Boudreault
  • Subject:Physical Disabilities, Otorhinolaryngology (Ears, Nose, & Throat)

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) defines functional equivalency as the optimal usability of telephone equipment and services in the Telecommunications Act of 1996. The experience of a person with a disability has to be as equivalent as possible to the experience of someone without a disability using a phone or any telecommunications services. When a hearing person makes a call, all he or she has to do is pick up the nearest phone, listen for a dial tone, and press a button or dial a keypad to call a number. Although the technology has evolved, the process of making or receiving a call remains the same. Approximately 48 million people with hearing disabilities in the United States consider some combination of voice, video, and ...

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