§ Mr. Ashley
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) what representations he has received regarding the telephone exchange for the deaf of the Royal National Institute for the Deaf in Gower street; and if he will make a statement;
(2) when he intends to meet British Telecom concerning the future of the Royal National Institute for the Deals telephone exchange for the deaf; and when he will make a decision on its future funding and extension.
§ Mr. Scott
Officials from this Department met representatives of British Telecom, the Manpower Services Commission, the Department of Trade and Industry and OFTEL on 3 November to discuss the telephone exchange for the deaf. Further information is being provided by the Royal National Institute for the Deaf and a meeting is being arranged with its officials. In the meantime the Manpower Services Commission has offered to extend its present support until the end of February. We have received representations on this matter from 162 right hon. and hon. Members and 53 other people, and have also received two petitions.