Communication Access UK

Communication Access UK

Inclusive communication for all

Two faces looking at one another with arrows forming a cyclical flow

Communication disability affects millions of people. Up to 14 million people in the UK (20% of the population) will experience communication difficulty at some point in their lives, with more than 10% of children having a long-term communication need.

Communication Access UK is an initiative developed in partnership by charities and organisations that share a vision to improve the lives of people with communication difficulties.

Led by the RCSLT, the partnership includes:

Together, we’ve developed the Communication Access Symbol, a new disability access symbol underpinned by a completely free training package and standards. We hope that these will help you, and your businesses or organisations to better support people with communication difficulties.

The impact of communication disability

Communication is not simply about the ability to speak but also the ability to hear and understand what is said to us.

The impact of communication difficulties and disabilities is varied; some people may find it hard to ask a question, name an object or ask for help, while others may have speech difficulties that make them difficult to understand.

Others may have problems processing information and difficulties with reading and writing. Some may use communication devices and require time to create their message.

Communication disabilities leave millions without a voice, denying them equality of access and opportunity.

A symbol for equality

The Communication Access Symbol has been developed to identify businesses and organisations whose staff have undergone training to help them to better support the needs of people with communication difficulties.

Businesses and organisations whose staff have taken the training will be accredited as communication accessible and can then display the Communication Access Symbol.

Anyone can sign up to Communication Access UK and complete the free training, from corporate businesses and large organisations to local shops and individuals.

How to get involved

To learn more about the initiative or to sign up, visit the Communication Access UK website.

The partnership

The Communication Access UK steering group is chaired by the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists and comprises the RCSLT and the following charities and organisations:

Headway: the brain injury association, Disability Rights UK, Communication Matters, NNPCF: National Network of Parent Carer Forums, Business Disability Forum, MNDA: Motor neurone disease association, Stroke Association and Makaton