Listen Loop System Helps State & Federal Agencies Stay ADA Compliant– It’s the Law!
Back in 1998, a law was enacted through the Rehabilitation Act Amendments stating all federal departments and agencies must provide alternate means of access that allows individuals the use of information and data. These laws apply to both federal employees as well as members of the public.
According to Listen Technologies, the original Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements specified that the number of assistive listening devices needed to be 4 percent of seating capacity. The new requirements (2010) have been scaled to match the total occupancy of the venue. It also states that a percentage of assistive listening devices must be hearing aid compatible to interface with t-coils in hearing aids. This is accommodated via neck loop technology with RF or IR assistive listening systems.
So what do all these mandates mean? They mean that all spaces that hold open meetings and trainings have to follow a list of standards for those with hearing disabilities.
The reality is that many state and federal agencies do not comply with these rules due to capacity, budget, or facility restrictions.
Specifically diving into peripheral devices, the rules go a little deeper. Agencies must compare the access of someone without disabilities to the access of someone with disabilities to create a benchmark of access for the devices.
What state and federal agencies should be aware of is that facilities can be evaluated every two years or when there is a filed formal complaint.
To aid agencies, professional audio visual companies can provide insight into Listen Loop Technology.
Listen loop technology is often called audio induction loop technology. These special sound systems work in conjunction with hearing aids or cochlear implants.
To summarize their function, listen loop technology provides a magnetic, wireless signal that is picked up by hearing devices. The system allows for an equal and personalized listening experience for everyone.
Why are these systems so important for those who already have hearing devices? Tony Channel, Operations Manager at Cory’s Audio Visual explains.
“In a large room full of people, hearing aids can pick up on background noise and elevate it to the same volume level as what someone with a hearing assistance device might be trying to hear,” he said. “Unfortunately, it can be difficult in those situations to single out one source of sound.”
This video allows you to hear the difference for yourself.
How do you spot facilities with listen loop capabilities? Just look for this sign.
With the technology’s ability to only magnify what is intended, like a presenter speaking into a microphone or other source audio, interference of surrounding noise isn’t a concern.
If you’re looking to be in compliance with the ADA standards, specifically in assistive listening devices, Oklahoma’s most-experienced audio visual company, Cory’s Audio Visual, has some advice. Here are some key aspects to consider when choosing an audio visual company:
- Find a team who is certified in the standards specific to Listen Loop technology.
It isn’t enough to just understand the technology and requirements to maintain and install the system correctly. Finding an integrator who is trained and certified by Listen Technologies in key contributors to the correct solution is the first step. Look for the following from your certified provider:
- Understanding the nuances of your venue to properly design the system
- Identifying the effects of structural contributors like metals, furniture, carpet, etc.
- Measuring audio intelligibility and background noise
- Partner with an audio visual team who won’t pass along extra costs
Because many companies don’t have employees who are certified in installing Listen Loop, or some have one on the team to claim they are certified, much of the work is subcontracted. Those costs are passed along to the customer.
Finding a team that is fully certified, like the team at Cory’s Audio Visual, will ensure the work is done in a one-stop-shop fashion.
- Sign on with a certified support team beyond the installation
Even small changes in your building can impact the consistency of your Listen Loop system. It is important to find a certified support team who can respond in an instant to provide guidance and troubleshooting.
Cory’s Audio Visual is a third-generation, family-owned audio visual company who designs, installs, and services integrated systems, like Listen Loop, to state and federal agencies, corporations, public venues, houses of worship, educational facilities, and more.
Every member of the team at Cory’s Audio Visual is certified in Listen Loop technology, from our designers, engineers, installers, and our support team.
If you’re interested in learning how you can become compliant with ADA requirements, a phone call to our team is completely free of charge at 405-682-8800!
Or, you can reach out to our team here.