This is a Pilot Study Protocol for a research titled ” Interrogation of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Suspects: Police Perceptions and Constitutional
Protections. I will upload the instruction and materials
Interrogation of Deaf Suspects: Police Perceptions and Constitutional Protections
Introduction and Background
Interrogating the deaf and hard of hearing people through providing the perceptions of the police and the relevant constitutional
protections is the area of my research interest. In this area, am concerned about the constant violation of the rights of disabled persons
mostly the deaf and hard of hearing across the globe. According to the Missouri Court System, extensive infringement of the rights of deaf and
hard-of- hearing people is due to communication barriers prevalent in courts and police stations (Appenzeller, Kemmery, & Compton, 2015). The
deaf and hard-of-hearing people consist of a limited percentage of disabled people who often find themselves in contact with the justice system.
In most cases, justice officials ignore the rights of disabled people deeming them as symptomatic and endemic. The paper will discuss police
perceptions and the Constitutional Protections for the deaf and hard of hearing people.
The goal of the research is to establish the perceptions of police and the strategies established by the constitution in protecting the
needs and the rights of the deaf and hard of hearing individuals. As law enforcement officers, the police regularly come into contact with the
deaf people. Approximately nine percent of the worlds’ population has hearing loss difficulty (Wilson & Winiarczyk, 2014). Further, studies have
confirmed that there is a relative increase in the percentage of the deaf people as the population increases. Some of the questions to be
discussed in the report includes:
i. How do the police perceive the deaf and hard of hearing persons and what are the differences in the policies administered?
ii. What are the communication services and aids that can be utilized by the police in ensuring effective communication with the deaf?
iii. What are the actual results of interrogating the deaf and hard hearing persons?
The above questions are relevant to the study as they provide a clear understanding of the role of policies in administering equal
rights among all citizens. In answering these questions, various studies will be of concern and their findings discussed under the literature
According to the National Association of the Deaf, the Deaf and hard of hearing individuals serving imprisonment terms are in most cases
denied their basic needs and rights such as the access to rehabilitation and prison services. The study identified that the lack of
understanding communication needs of the deaf by the prison administrators supported the deprival of protection rights for the deaf.
Nevertheless, the deaf and hard of hearing individuals either inmates or free citizens, are all subjected to statutory and constitutional rights
which include accessing the appropriate correctional facilities. Also, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) provide that the deaf persons
are subjected to similar services as provided by the law enforcement to other individuals (Rodda & Eleweke, 2013). All the law enforcement
agencies are supposed to situate that there is effective communication with the deaf and the personnel in different bodies. In conjunction, a
study conducted in Missouri provided that most deaf individuals experience a hard time in communicating with both the law enforcement officials
and other persons due to the absence of well-developed communication services. Further, the study added that the failure to recognize the
requirements of the deaf persons has significantly hindered equality in providing services similar to those provided to other citizens (Schmitt
& Leigh, 2015). Here, interviews and questionnaires were administered to different people, where their responses were utilized to come up with
the concluding thought, that all the law enforcement individuals should be made aware of the needs of communication for the deaf and hard of
According to a study conducted on South Africa’s justice system developed a scheme that consisted of different components that can be
incorporated into the Constitution to provide the rights of the deaf. One of the components provided in the developed scheme was recognition of
fair treatment of the deaf in line with the requirements of the constitution. With the recognition, the justice officials would be in a position
to treat the deaf with equality through seeing them as equal to other citizens. Secondly, there was the provision of the augmented and amended
legislative that fleshes out all the contents of rights of a constitution (Napier & Leeson, 2016). Lastly, dissemination of practical guidelines
for the justice officials in directing their daily interactions with the hard of hearing and deaf people was outlined as being essential in
ensuring the protection of the deaf. After conducting a study in one of the prisons in South Africa and gauging the effectiveness of the scheme,
it was shown that future violations of the rights of the deaf would be prevented, hence enhancing equality among the South African citizens. The
observation was the key method used in this study to identifying the requirements of the deaf inmates.
A study conducted in Jamaica revealed that communication services and aids are crucial in ensuring effective communication between the
deaf and the law enforcement personnel. De Meulder (2016) suggested that the exception of the communication services is only provided when a
specific service would lead to undue variation and primary change in nature of which the law enforcement services should be availed. The study
based its findings on the diverse regulations provided by both the ADA Tittle II and the Jamaican Council for Persons with Disabilities (JCPD).
According to the regulations of the ADA Title II, qualified interpreters, written materials, computer transcription services, telephones with
hearing aids and assistive listen systems and services are among the services that support effective communication between the deaf and the law
enforcement personnel. Also, the study provided that the deaf persons are much slower in handling communication facilities hence creating the
need to develop policies and procedures that provide the deaf with adequate time in accessing the communication equipment. The methodology
utilized by the study was focus groups that observed the compartment and the responsiveness of the deaf and the hard of hearing individuals. The
focus groups were set out in different locations to obtain information on the workability of the deaf (De Meulder, 2016).
In their article, Humphries, Kushalnagar & Mathur (2013) claimed that the 14th amendment of the U.S. constitution’s Equal Protection
Clause provides that all states should provide equal protection to all citizens regardless of any disability. The study outlined that the
legislature has constantly passed laws that focus on maintaining anti-discrimination and equality among the disabled individuals. The right to
public education was established as being off the equal protection clause but was passed by the Congress. Here the public school system was
required to offer free and effective education to all the children including those with disability being provided with specialized services.
Also, individualized curriculum containing qualified services for all the requirements for education were considered. The study findings were
realized through observations and use of questionnaires. The researchers visited schools that offered to learn to the deaf, and through
observation, they obtained information pertaining the rights and needs of the deaf. Other than that, according to Rodda & Eleweke (2013), Clause
IV stated that the communication needs of all the children and more so the deaf and hard of hearing children should incorporate adequate
opportunities in the language and communication needs. The need for individual and direct communication exigencies with the instruction
professions and peers was recognized as being active in supporting the smooth learning among the deaf children. Therefore, the right to language
and proper education were established as being in line with the rights and the needs of all the deaf individuals. Hence, the necessity of
considering the services availed in both cases.
In summary, the deaf and hard of hearing individuals are the same to other citizens, which require then to be provided with all the
rights and needs availed to the other citizens. Although most people look down upon the deaf, as they can hardly, hear, they have equal value to
other humans. As such, there is a need to avail communication services and needs that will support the deaf in effectively communicating with
others. Different studies conducted in diverse areas and more so in Missouri have highlighted the necessity of administering policies and
procedures that support equality and anti-discrimination among the deaf and hard of hearing persons. For instance, it was established that deaf
people are subjected to similar and equal financial benefits offered to all other persons. In such a case, the financial institutions are
required to administer equal financial opportunities and access by all the citizens. Also, equal rights to language and education are among the
things that have been proposed in most studies. It is the case, as most public school curricula fail to incorporate the learning equipment and
facilities for the deaf. Thus, to ensure equal education opportunities, all schools are supposed to avail advanced facilities that enhancing
active learning by the deaf and hard of hearing persons.
Appenzeller, M. C., Kemmery, M. A., & Compton, M. V. (2015). Looking Back: A Journal Analysis of the Volta Review. The Volta Review, 115(1), 5-
De Meulder, M. (2016). The influence of deaf people’s dual category status on sign language planning: the British Sign Language (Scotland) Act
(2015). Current Issues in Language Planning, 1-18.
Humphries, T., Kushalnagar, R., Mathur, G., Napoli, D. J., Padden, C., Rathmann, C., & Smith, S. (2013). The Right to Language. The Journal of
Law, Medicine & Ethics : A Journal of the American Society of Law, Medicine & Ethics, 41(4), 872–Contents. http://doi.org/10.1111/jlme.12097
Napier, J., & Leeson, L. (2016). Understanding Applied Sign Linguistics. In Sign Language in Action (pp. 19-49). Palgrave Macmillan UK.
Rodda, M., & Eleweke, C. J. (2013). Theories of literacy development in limited English proficiency deaf people: A review. Deafness & Education
Schmitt, S. S. N., & Leigh, I. W. (2015). Examining a Sample of Black Deaf Individuals on the Deaf Acculturation Scale. Journal of deaf studies
and deaf education, 20(3), 283-295.
Wilson, A. T., & Winiarczyk, R. E. (2014). Mixed Methods Research Strategies With Deaf People Linguistic and Cultural Challenges Addressed.
Journal of Mixed Methods Research, 1558689814527943.
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