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FGCU's Telephone System Connects Hearing, Speech Impaired by Dialing 7-1-1
10/31/2006

FORT MYERS, FL - Florida Gulf Coast University's telephone system now allows expanded access for people who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf/blind or speech impaired through the Florida Relay, a communications link that connects people who use specialized telephones to people who use standard telephones by dialing 7-1-1.

The FGCU Americans with Disabilities Act Advisory Committee, Office of Adaptive Services and the Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance support the use of the Florida Relay as a value-added resource to the FGCU community.

The new system offers a variety of user features. "A person who uses one feature may communicate with someone who uses another feature 24 hours a day, 365 days a year," director of Telecommunications Services Neal Snyder said.

"A person using a Text Telephone, or TTY, may communicate with a person using Voice Carry-Over, Hearing Carry-Over, or Speech-to-Speech through the relay service," explained Snyder.

The Florida Relay assists those who wish to telephone a person who is hearing or speech-impaired to communicate over the telephone by relaying the words and emotions where indicated and relaying back the words and emotions of the person called.

There are no restrictions on the number or length of calls, no charges for local calls, and translation services are available for English, Spanish and Creole.

The 7-1-1 access number is toll free and is placed among other common three-digit numbers such as 9-1-1 for emergency and 4-1-1 for directory assistance calls.

The Federal Communications Commission, or FCC, implemented the nationwide service to make calling easier and faster.

For more information, media representatives should contact Cori Bright in the Office of Adaptive Services at (239) 590-7956, or Cheryl Seals-Gonzalez in the Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance at (239) 590-7406.




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