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Traffic Cards Released for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Interactions with Police

Alejandra Palacios
Updated: March 02, 2018 10:40 PM

DULUTH- The Minnesota Department of Human Services released a traffic card Friday that will facilitate communication with law enforcement for drivers that are deaf and hard of hearing during traffic stops.

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DHS and Minnesota Department of Public Safety collaborated on the traffic card. It was designed with input from the deaf and hard of hearing community. Miscommunication barriers in the past led to serious and dangerous outcomes.

The card is meant to stay in the vehicle. It identifies the person being deaf or hard of hearing and include tips on the best way to communicate with the driver. It also includes graphics that both parties can point to during a traffic stop interaction.

Kyle Heyesen, a member of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Advisory Council, said the council identified the need for the tool based on input from the community of deaf and hard of hearing.

"It's just a really great quick tool that people can access and use to help with that communication that was not available before or possible," Heyesen said.

The traffic card facilitates interaction with sections that feature different graphics depending on the situation. There’s a section for information needed, such as a driver’s license or insurance card. There’s a section on help needed, on violations like speeding, and a section on what happens next. There’s also a section on what the driver would need if they are arrested or need to come in for questions.

It's a new two-way communication method that will make a difference for police officers and drivers who are deaf or hard of hearing.

People who want a traffic card can order one below via:

Email: dhhs.metro@state.mn.us with name, mailing address and county of residence (or email if they want an electronic copy).

Call 651-431-5940 voice or 651-964-1514 video phone.

An online version is available at https://edocs.dhs.state.mn.us/lfserver/Public/DHS-7438-ENG.

 


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Alejandra Palacios

Copyright 2018 WDIO-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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