According to the Arizona Commission of the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing (ACDHH), there are more than 700,000 people who are hard of hearing living in Arizona. Since 2006, the Adult Loss of Hearing Association (ALOHA) has pushed the agenda for public venues, such as churches, theaters, auditoriums, etc. to install hearing loops to increase accessibility for the large number of Arizonans who are living with hearing loss.
Hearing loops are copper wires that surround a room or venue, usually installed in the floor. The wires are connected to the sound system in the room and transmit sound through electromagnetic waves to your hearing aid’s telecoil (T-coil). The hearing loop system delivers crisp, clear sound to your ears, without the need for any other assisted listening devices; it is as simple as switching your hearing aid’s programming to T-coil. The Cronkite News of Tucson reported that a “2007 state law requires audiologists in Arizona to tell patients purchasing hearing aids about the telecoil option that makes looping possible.”
Below is a selection of venues in and around Phoenix that are fitted with a hearing loop (for a listing of houses of worship, visit: https://www.loopfinder.com/landing/getPlace/city/phoenix/). Though a lot of movie theaters and performance venues in the Phoenix area offer assisted listening devices (infrared, neck loops, etc.), there are not many arts, culture, and entertainment venues that offer hearing loops. For more information on hearing loops or getting involved with the initiative to install more venues with loops.
The Humanist Society of Greater Phoenix is “primarily an educational organization, providing bi-monthly lectures by experts in various fields; opportunities for intellectual discourse…and social events such as game nights, potlucks, and special celebrations throughout the year.” The HSGP meets twice a month on Sundays at 9am for a lecture series featuring diverse guest speakers. Upcoming events include a discussion group about inequities in our economic system, a screening of Pedro E. Guerrero: a Photographer’s Journey, and a sold-out talk with actor and Chicano arts advocate Cheech Marin. Marin’s collection of Chicano art will be on exhibit from September 11 to the end of December 2015. For more information, visit https://www.hsgp.org/
For over 40 years, the Loft Cinema has been serving Tucson and the greater south Arizona area’s independent and art-house film lovers. Two screens at the Loft are fitted with hearing loops (one is handicap accessible). Currently playing are: The End of the Tour, based on interviews between journalist David Lipsky and author David Foster Wallace; Irrational Man, Woody Allen’s new existential picture; Mr. Holmes, starring the illustrious Ian McKellan as our favorite detective; and Cartel Land, a searing look at the underworld of the drug business.
This multi-purpose venue is fitted with a hearing loop and hosts movies, comedy shows, concerts, and art shows.