Dear BBC,

Last night Sara Cox made a number of comments complaining about the screening of an English language film with added captions, asked for a discount and commented back to many Deaf people who complained at how offended they were that they were ‘gobshites’.

The timeline of her comments and some of the reactions by Deaf and hearing people on twitter can be read here (this is just a snapshot):

Sarah is in a postion of influence and with nearly 300,000 followers on twitter should be taking more care at her comments (not withstanding the ones about the film and sex scenes involved).

No doubt her comments are thoughtless (the tweets have been deleted from her twitter account @sarajcox) but they are also offensive to many Deaf and hard of hearing people.

Her comments are still available from screenshots taken of her twitter account.

I cannot watch films at the cinema or on tv without subtitles I do not have the luxury of just planning a trip to the cinema. The same applies for online video on demand online which has ziltch captioning.

Ms Cox should
a) take responsibility for her comments not just delete them and think they will go away
b) apologise to those she offended on twitter and on radio/tv (since many of us Deaf people can’t hear the radio (especially for calling us ‘gobshites’ for being offended),
c) undergo Deaf and Disability Awareness training (do not all BBC staff have to follow the Equalities Act 2010?).

d) Lastly she should meet Deaf people including others from twitter there are also many Deaf people who have in the past and now work for the BBC as well.

She should understand the very profound issues we face as Deaf people in a hearing world.

Maybe she could turn this very offending situation round by her actions and apologies.

I look forward to receiving your reply,

Yours sincerely
Alison Smith
Pesky People