KENTVILLE, NS — The Kentville City Council Advisory Committee held its first meeting with two sign language interpreters on Monday, September 12.
In the first fully deaf-accessible meeting, interpreters translated for members of the public in the council chamber and for those watching the live stream of the meeting at home.
“It’s a wonderful thing to celebrate,” said Rachel Bedingfield, director of parks and recreation.
“During the development of our accessibility plan, the deaf and hard of hearing community told us that being able to participate in council meetings, events and programs, like everyone else, would help create greater opportunities for community engagement and connectivity.
Bedingfield is the staff lead for the Kentville Inclusion and Access Advisory Committee that developed and implements the accessibility plan.
“Kentville should be very proud of this work which can serve as a model for other municipalities in the province and across Canada,” said Access Advisory Committee Chair Laurel Taylor.
“We’re working hard to improve accessibility for everyone, so everyone can access and participate in their community,” Taylor said.
City council meetings can be viewed on the council’s Facebook page and YouTube channel, where closed captions are added to each video after it is uploaded.
The Kentville Inclusion and Access Advisory Committee is also looking for new community members to participate in meetings and other initiatives.