In March 2016 the Department of Communications and the Arts released an options paper: ‘Communications Accessibility: 2016 and Beyond’. The paper proposed a number of options related to the ongoing sustainability of the National Relay Service. The use of the National Relay Service over the past couple of years has increased due to the significant improvements to the service through the introduction of a number of new relay services.

ACCAN consulted widely with members in order to provide an informed response to the paper. It is clear that the National Relay Service is providing an essential bridge to communication access for many Australians who are Deaf, hearing-impaired and speech-impaired. ACCAN made a number of recommendations which, if adopted, will ensure that the NRS continues to provide a world-class relay service through the current contract period and into the future.

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