Minister Joan Burton and Citizens Information Phone Service launch new online information facility to assist those with hearing and speech difficulties
The Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton TD today (Friday 30th September) officially launched a new instant chat information service for Citizens Information Phone Service called ‘Live Advisor’ specifically for people with hearing and speech difficulties. The service is funded by the Citizens Information Board.
‘Live Advisor’ is a free, confidential, one-to-one service which provides information on a wide range of social and civil rights and entitlements. The Live Advisor service, which is user friendly in design, is available between the hours of 9am and 5pm (Monday to Friday) and can be accessed by logging on to www.ciboard.ie/liveadvisor .
Commenting at the launch Minister Joan Burton TD said, “The importance of information provision cannot be over emphasized as it is a key element in assisting people to participate in society. I am very familiar with the fact that people’s rights and entitlements can so often stand or fall on the quality of information available to them and on the level of access to information”
“The Citizens Information Phone Service team is very proud to now be in a position to assist people that previously had difficulty accessing our service. It is a step forward in our philosophy of inclusion for all” said Deirdre Power, Manager of the Citizens Information Phone Service (CIPS).
The service was actively promoted in 2010 with relevant voluntary bodies like the Sign Language Interpreting Service (SLIS) Irish Deaf Society, DeafHear, Cork Deaf Association, DFI and MS Ireland.
The Citizens Information Phone Service national helpline (076 107 4000 or 1890 777 121) has experienced a dramatic increase in demand for their services. This year, to the end of August, the service has responded to some 115,000 requests for information and advice on public and social services such as social welfare and employment rights queries.
The general public can continue to make enquiries to CIPS to ensure that the Live Advisor is kept available for people with hearing and speech difficulties.
The Citizens Information Phone Service is an important channel of information for citizens that links in with the other supports provided by the Citizens Information Board including citizensinformation.ie, the country wide network of Citizens Information Services, the National Advocacy Service for People with Disabilities and MABS.
For further information on the Live Advisor facilities go to www.ciboard.ie/liveadvisor