Device helps hearing impaired excel in workplace

May 24, 2010 4:24:53 AM PDT
While technology continues to improve, security gets tighter. This has become a challenge for communication devices designed to give people who are deaf and hard of hearing a "voice" in the workplace.

For the first time, there is a video phone that is compatible for corporations and government agencies that have firewalls. This device is slowly making its way into the business world.

Donald Moore has been working at the Federal Reserve Bank in Chicago for 11 years. His job requires him to communicate with customers.

Earlier this year, he got the Z-150 video phone that works with internet firewall.

"It changed my life because I can participate in conference calls. I'm less reliant on e-mail. E-mail becomes very tedious to type and change back information," said Moore.

The Z-150 phone is a product of ZVRS. Chris Wagner is the vice president of marketing.

"This specific video phone is designed specifically for firewall transfers, so when many corporations, business or the government are concerned about security, this video phone is one of the only video phones that has the ability to provide security in places like that," said Wagner.

Donald Moore's boss, Eric Tralmer, says this device is making a difference.

"Communication plays a large role in Donald's job, so when we're meeting with customers, understanding requirements--he's a developer, so we have to make sure we understand what they want. A lot of that could be in an unwritten form, but some of it is verbal as well," Tralmer sad.

"It uses a video where you're able to see an interpreter, if he calls a hearing person or seeing another deaf person using sign language and spoken English," said Wagner.

Moore learned about the Z-150 phone by researching.

"We see a lot of changes in the deaf and hard of hearing community," said Moore. "Now they have more functional equivalency in the workplace. They can participate in team meetings, they can participate in conference calls. They can participate in many things they've never experience before."

The Z-150 phone's price range is between $249 to $995. For more information go to www.zvrs.com.


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