by Ryan Hill
Legislation that allows Deaf and Hard of Hearing citizens to request a designation for their driver’s license from the N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles was signed into law last week by Governor Roy Cooper.
The bill, HB 84, passed with unanimous, bi-partisan support and will make interactions between law enforcement and the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community in North Carolina much safer, said Jan Withers, Director of the N.C. Division of Services for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing.
HB 84 establishes education and training standards for law enforcement, and gives the more than 1.2 million Deaf and Hard of Hearing citizens in the state the option, upon request, to have their driver’s license indicate that they are deaf or hard of hearing.
“This is an important legislative achievement,” Withers said. “It moves us closer to ensuring that communication with deaf and hard of hearing drivers will be as effective as communication with people who are hearing.”