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Activities of the Looping Committee: "Let's Loop America!"

In most places, hard of hearing people hear the broadcast sound, but only after it has traveled some distance from a loudspeaker, reverberated off walls, and gotten mixed with other room noise. The modern architectural design in today’s church, an auditorium and meeting places with wooden beams, cathedral ceilings, wood paneling and tile floors etc., they all produce noise signals of natural reverberations. Even people with normal hearing often struggle understanding there. They all need some kind of assistive listening systems to understand communications.

Induction Loop system with Telecoils on hearing aids or cochlear implants provide a seamless and cost-effective way to understand communication. No additional assistive listening system or equipment is needed with today’s refinement of "induction loop" systems. These hearing loops are also called audio-induction loops, induction loops, audio loops, or loops.

The members of the Looping Committee spread the message about installing Induction Looping Systems for accommodating hearing impaired people in public places such as churches, senior centers, libraries, schools, performing arts centers, theaters and auditoriums etc. We meet with the law makers, officers in charge and authorities; provide them our research on the issues about the quality of life of hearing impaired people including children for accommodation. We explain about its research and advantages of Induction Looping Systems, related developments, and provide success stories of places where looping has already been installed.

We can all participate toward the motto “Let’s Loop America!” and support people with hearing loss by approaching our elected officials: explain to them our concerns for accommodation to hearing impaired and request funding.

The government owned public places like Community centers, Senior centers, City Halls, Council Chambers, Post offices, Metro stations, Airports… etc.: they all require major funding towards professional design and installation of Induction Looping systems. It is definitely a marathon task but it is possible to accomplish if we all contact our elected officials of our City, Assembly and Congress. Every one of us needs to approach them and make them aware of our needs; they definitely listen to voters’ issues for possible solutions. We all know the elected representatives visit us quite often for votes; they will not be able to evade and ignore about our needs.

It is my personal observations: the Cities, the State, and even our Congress: they all keep extra funding available that is allocated at the end of the budget year to meet the real needs of the constituents as demanded by the elected members. We need be persistent and patient; approach and remind them, and I get them committed during and after elections. Interestingly, the City of Cerritos has looped the Council Chamber and Majestic rooms of its Senior Center with this approach.

What is a Hearing Loop?

A hearing loop is a wire that circles a room that is connected to a sound system. This wire loop transmits speaker’s sound electromagnetically which in turn is picked up by the telecoils in our hearing aid or cochlear implant. In another words, the induction loop systems take sound straight from the source and deliver it right into the listener's head. It's as if one's head was located in the microphone, or inches from a television's loudspeaker--without extraneous noise, or blurring of the sound with distance from the sound source. Incidentally, the noises of natural reverberations from walls and beams remain excluded in this magnetic-signals-communication.

The hard of hearing people generally use personalized Assistive Listening Devices (ALD) such as audio loops (or hearing loop), FM, and infrared systems to help with the hearing aid. However, the induction looped environment with the telecoil on hearing aid or cochlear implant serves as a universal ALD for effective communication. Looping systems can serve anyone anywhere, including transient venues such as ticket windows or airports--wherever checking out FM or infrared portable listening aids is impractical. The telecoil and hearing loop together provide a seamless and cost-effective way to understand communication. No additional assistive listening systems or equipment is needed with today’s refinement of "induction loop" systems.

The magnetically transmitted sound to hearing aids and cochlear implants with telecoils is the dream of future for hearing impaired people.

A Telecoil is a small copper coil that is an option in most hearing aids and cochlear implant processors. Telecoils also known as t-coils were originally used to boost the magnetic signals from the telephone handset. The telecoil is activated by a t-switch for selecting a dedicated program setting. I

f your hearing aid doesn't have a telecoil, you will need a headset plugged into a loop receiver to achieve the same effect. Be sure to ask the hearing professional to include a telecoil in your hearing aid. A telecoil will expand the usefulness of your hearing aid; it will transform your hearing aid into a wireless receiver and provides connectivity that helps you hear better in certain situations. This telecoil also enables using hearing-aid-compatible phones and hearing assistive technology.