Get in the Hearing Loop is a communication access program of the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association (CHHA).
We dream of a world where people with hearing loss can thrive each day with communication access, full inclusion, and equal participation in all aspects of life, everywhere they go.
Through education, advocacy, and consultation services, the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association (CHHA) has launched its national campaign “Get in the Hearing Loop”, a national movement to promote communication access and support a barrier-free Canada, one loop at a time. We hope to change public spaces — and lives! — by sharing information about hearing loops.
A special thank you to the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA), for giving CHHA the permission to borrow and adapt the Get in the Hearing Loop campaign and resources they had originally developed.
If you are a…
- person with hearing loss
- hearing loss advocate
- venue that’s interested in providing the best assistive listening experience
- hearing loop installer or AV tech
- person or foundation committed to developing hearing-inclusive communities
… you’ve come to the right place! We’re building hearing-friendly communities, and we invite you to join us.
Understanding Life with Hearing Loss
People with hearing loss worry and plan how they’ll communicate every day, in every situation. And often, hearing aids or cochlear implants are not enough. For example, imagine not being able to understand…
- instructions given by a doctor or pharmacist
- announcements in airports, train stations, or on public transportation
- your family on the telephone
- dialogue in a movie, play, or lecture
- companions at a restaurant
- work related meetings
- your teacher, professor or classmates
Now, imagine a technology that addresses these common challenges.
Hearing loops bring sound directly into a listeners’ telecoil-enabled hearing aids or cochlear implant — improving clarity and understanding.
Chris Glenn, Director of Recreation, Community and Culture announcing changes to Burlington Seniors’ Centre which include the installation of several hearing loops.
Hearing Loops Provide …
- Easy, immediate and discreet communication access for people with hearing loss
- An easy, low-maintenance way for venues to provide communication access technology
- Hearing access that’s hearing aid compatible and universal
- A way for venues to comply with the Accessible Canada Act, removing and preventing barriers in federal jurisdiction. Provincial legislation AODA, BC
- Thriving, inclusive, and hearing-friendly communities for everyone
For more information about hearing loops, including user and venue benefits, how loops work, and how to choose a loop installer, visit our Hearing Loop Technology page.
About Get in the Hearing Loop
Many Canadians are not yet aware of hearing loops or other technologies that can improve public engagement and enrich the lives of millions of people living with hearing loss.
Communication access enhances engagement for people with hearing loss, their family, friends and colleagues, and communities.
CHHA’s National program Get in the Hearing Loop campaign is dedicated to providing and promoting community education, advocacy on behalf of people with hearing loss, and consultation services to help venues of all kinds successfully implement hearing loop technology.
Get in the Hearing Loop …
- educates community leaders, municipalities, businesses, and organizations in every province across Canada about the need for hearing loops
- provides information to places of worship, audiologists, venues and organizations of all shapes and sizes about hearing loops and hearing loss
- advocates both provincially and federally to improve the lives of people with hearing loss
- provides workshops, toolkits, videos, articles, and more to inspire and guide anyone interested in communication access: event planners, installers, venue managers, decision-makers, civic leaders, AV techs, advocates, funders, and of course, people with hearing loss
- requests communication access via hearing loops at a wide variety of venues
- consults closely with installers to ensure loop installations meet universal IEC standards
Each hearing loop becomes part of our nation’s accessibility infrastructure, creating hearing-friendly communities. Loops include people with hearing loss much the way wheelchair ramps include people with mobility challenges.
We envision where Canada continues to break down communication barriers and include hearing loops in every province in every community where communication access is an automatic, enduring part of our daily lives.
The Canadian Hard of Hearing Association’s (CHHA) vision is to inspire and empower Canadians impacted by hearing loss.
Connecting Canadians impacted by hearing loss through advocacy, education and community engagement.
We cherish diversity.
We break down walls and build bridges.
We drive change.
How We Started
HLAA and the American Academy of Audiology spearheaded the nationwide campaign in the United States with the support of hearing loop advocate Juliette Sterkens who provides professional advice and outreach, and the David & Carol Myers Foundation. With the consent and permission from HLAA, the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association launched the Canadian campaign to create more hearing-friendly communities in Canada with its Canadian version of the Get In the Loop program.
Here are some easy next steps and resources to learn more.
- Check out the Hearing Loop Technology page for more information and various resources.
- Visit the Canadian Audiology website for a great article by Juliëtte Sterkens, AuD Hearing Loop – the Preferred Large Area Assistive Listening System to learn why hearing loops are the preferred large area assistive listening system technology.
- Get answers to frequently asked questions on the Hearing Assistive Technology page and at HearingLoop FAQs.
- Before purchasing a hearing Loop or contracting with an installer, review the pointers in these guides:
Specifically, for people with hearing loss:
- Visit Accommodations request guidelines communication access for more information.
- Use this convenient form to talk with your hearing health provider about telecoils, an essential component for using assistive listening technologies like hearing loops. Also, learn about hearing loops and telecoils by clicking here.
The need for readily available assistive listening systems and devices in day-to-day living for people with hearing loss is one of the driving forces behind the Get in the Hearing Loop campaign.
Listening devices that connect quickly and unobtrusively are most likely to be used. Hearing loop systems accomplish this goal. If you would like to help encourage the installation and use of more hearing loop systems, here are some guidelines:
- Understand the facts. You recognize the need for more hearing loops in the community. However, people who have never come across hearing loops before will have no idea why you would want to spend money on an invisible solution to an invisible problem. You need to be able to talk to people about the benefits and limitations of hearing loop systems. Develop a basic understanding of how hearing loop systems and telecoils work. Do your research to become familiar with this technology: Hearing Loop Technology page
- Become familiar with Canada’s Canada Accessibility Act accessibility is about creating communities, workplaces, and services that enable everyone to participate fully in society without barriers.
- Know the alternatives to loop systems and be able to explain why the loop would be best for a particular place. See a Comparison of Large Area Assistive Listening Systems.
- Create a coalition. One person can make change happen, but it’s more effective to engage and mobilize people to help you achieve your goals. Find groups to champion the project locally:
- Members from CHHA Networks across Canada
- Representatives of other organizations of and for people with hearing loss
- Hearing health care providers and audiologists
- Nonprofit organizations working with people with hearing loss
- Connect with your local council members and mayors in your community. Also, connect with your provincial MPPs and federal MPs.
- Accessibility Groups
- Reach out to the community together. With your support, CHHA will support bringing much-needed awareness to communities where public venues are required to provide hearing accommodation. An excellent place to start is in your city or town. Start with your local council chambers or meeting rooms or your local libraries, community and senior centers, public auditoriums, theatres, and places of worship.
CHHA will share updates on our national Get In the Hearing Loop campaign as we continue to get Canada looped, every province every community. We will share stories through our CHHA Blog posts and photos.
Follow us on this exciting journey!