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Sally Shaw named Scottish Sensory & Equality Champion

The founding director of social enterprise Ideas for Ears has been crowned the Scottish Sensory & Equality Champion of the Year.

Sally Shaw received the award, which recognises the person who has made the greatest contribution to sensory loss and equality in Scotland, at the Scottish Sensory and Equality Conference and Awards 2019.

The conference held in Glasgow on 15 March was hosted by STV’s Kelly Ann Woodland and organised by deafscotland, with support from Disability Equality Scotland.

The evening also saw Ideas for Ears being nominated as a contender in two further categories:

  • Outstanding practice, innovation and dedication to sensory loss and inclusion in Scotland (national organisation)
  • Multi-sensory and inclusive communication approach in communications (accessible information for all people) in Scotland (national organisation)

Sally, pictured right with Alan Blue of the Ideas for Ears community steering group, said:  “It is a huge honour to be named Scottish Sensory and Equality Champion of the Year.  There are many wonderful individuals working incredibly hard across Scotland to break down the barriers that constrain lives and restrict choice and access to opportunity so I was stunned when my name was read out.

“The award acknowledges not just my efforts but the wider Ideas for Ears team and the many individuals across Scotland and the UK who have so generously given support, assistance and encouragement.  Striving for social change is a team game not a solitary pursuit.”

Sally received the award in recognition of create, develop, launch and share the Hearing Access Protocol, which sets out the guidance for how to create meetings, conferences and events that are accessible to, and inclusive of, everyone, whatever their hearing ability.  The Hearing Access Protocol and the subject of hearing access was recently debated in the Scottish Parliament.

Sally added:  “Hearing access has vast power to include or exclude and it does this in often deceptively simple ways. By tackling poor hearing access, we not only make life better and easier for people with hearing loss, we embrace practices that are better in general for everyone.”

The Scottish Sensory and Equality Awards champion those organisations and individuals across Scotland who are helping to build a Scotland that works for everyone by breaking down societal barriers.