FEB 1 l994 Mr. Warren T.

Hanna Director Hard of Hearing Advocates 245 Prospect Street Framingham, Massachusetts 01701 Dear Mr. Hanna: This is in response to your letter to Attorney General Reno seeking advice on what can be done to educate the hard of hearing community about the availability of hearing aids with telecoil wires. Although the ADA does not require manufacturers to educate consumers about products they manufacture, there are a number of Federal agencies that may be able to provide information that will assist you in educating consumers who are hard of hearing about hearing aid products that are available on the market: * In addition to this Department, the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission can provide information and technical assistance to assist the public in understanding the types of assistive listening systems that are appropriate for different applications; the circumstances under which an employer is required by the ADA to provide an assistive listening system to communicate with an employee; and the circumstances under which businesses or State or local government agencies that serve the public are required to provide an assistive listening system to communicate with consumers. The U.S. Department of Education's National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research does research on a variety of disability issues and may have information about assistive listening systems that work better for consumers who use hearing aids with telecoil wires than for consumers who use hearing aids without telecoil wires or consumers who

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cc: Records; Chrono; Wodatch; Magagna; Willis; McDowney; FOIA; MAF. \UDD\WILLIS\CTHANNA

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-2are hard of hearing but cannot benefit from any hearing aids currently on the market, along with the research it has done on the types of assistive listening systems (FM, infra-red, and loup) that are appropriate for different applications. * The Federal Communications Commission regulates under the Hearing Aid Compatibility Act and may have information about telephone models that work better for consumers who use hearing aids with telecoil wires than for consumers who use hearing aids without telecoil wires or consumers who are hard of hearing but cannot benefit from any hearing aids currently on the market. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Food and Drug Administration regulates under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and may have information about manufacturers or distributors of hearing aids suspected of "overselling" their products, claiming them to be more effective than they really are.

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Enclosed is a booklet that provides information about the ADA and lists the telephone numbers for ADA information lines operated by the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The Department of Justice operates an ADA information line at (202) 514-0301. Sincerely,

James P. Turner Acting Assistant Attorney General Civil Rights Division Enclosure

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