Vodafone today launched a Customer Care Service in Portuguese Sign Language (PSL) for deaf and hearing impaired people, making it the first Portuguese company to provide a call centre especially for this community.
The Vodafone Customer Care Service in PSL, created to address the specific difficulties in communicating with hearing impaired customers, is available by free videocall to 12717 between 9:00 am and 8:00 pm on weekdays.
To implement this help line Vodafone has established a team of call centre workers fluent in PSL. These workers were supervised during their training period by a professional interpreter of PSL and by Professor João Alberto Ferreira, Honorary President of the Portuguese Association for the Deaf, who adapted and transposed into Portuguese Sign Language all the customer care training modules, which previously were designed only for voice communication.
To overcome the lack of certain telecommunications terms in LGP, such as ‘internet access pen’, ‘price plan’ or ‘network’, gestures were adapted that will be gradually introduced into the Portuguese Sign Language user community.
Also as part of its Social Responsibility policy, since 2005 Vodafone Portugal has provided price plans with special terms and phones adapted for people with a degree of disability of 60% or greater, with a view to contributing to the inclusion of this community in the Information Society.