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If you are over 18 and you are deaf, have a hearing or visual impairment or have dual sensory loss our Sensory Impairment Team can provide or arrange services to help you live in your own home and remain part of the community.

We can 

  • arrange a needs assessment for you to determine whether you need practical support from us, such as help in your home 
  • provide specialist equipment which is free of charge if you are assessed as eligible 
  • provide information and advice related to your impairment(s) 
  • give you benefits and grants advice 
  • supply information on direct payments and personal budgets 
  • provide information about local and national organisations which promote the welfare of people who have sensory loss

One of our day centres also offers sessions for people with sensory impairments.  

We can also assess the needs of anyone who informally cares for you to see how their caring role affects their life. This includes their physical and mental health, relationships, ability to work, and leisure time. This is known as a carer's assessment.

Services for visually impaired people

Merton Vision

We work closely with MertonVision, a charity which supports visually impaired people. The charity can provide you with the following services on behalf of the Council: 

  • rehabilitation services 
  • community outreach 
  • accessible IT training and support  
  • updates registers (for sight impaired and severely sight impaired) 
  • provides low vision and visual impairment equipment such walking canes, talking watches, talking clocks and liquid level indicators 
  • arrange adaptations to your home, such as improved lighting 
  • telephone befriending services 
  • volunteer services 
  • information about other voluntary organisations which could help you 

Telephone: 020 8540 5446  
Email: info@mertonvision.org.uk

For more information on mobility assistance visit our freedom pass and blue badge information pages.

Other useful contacts

RNIB (Royal National Institute of Blind) - the UK’s leading sight loss charity has lots of information and offers support in a range of areas including living with sight loss, cost of living pressures and web accessibility.   
SENSE - a national charity for deaf and blind people, offers free advice on health and social care, education, communication and Sense services in your area.  
Deafblind UK is a charity which supports people with significant hearing and sight loss. It provides practical help, emotional support, help with technology, information, advice and even holidays to anyone who needs it.  
The charity AbilityNet has online resources and volunteers who can help people with disabilities use all types of technology.

Support for deaf or hearing-impaired adults and those with dual sensory loss

We can provide specialist equipment such as: 

  • flashing light doorbells 
  • vibrating alarm clocks 
  • red or white folding canes 
  • vibrating pager (for alerting you to the doorbell, fire/ or smoke alarms and baby monitors) 
  • loop systems – personal and room (this is a sound system which allows you to connect to one specific sound within a room with your hearing aid) 

This equipment is free of charge if you are assessed as eligible.  

We can also: 

  • give advice and information 
  • carry out needs assessments
  • arrange for communication guides and/or outreach support workers if you are eligible
  • liaise with housing, education, welfare rights and other internal or external organisations
  • can arrange direct payments or commissioned care packages if eligible 
  • sign post you to other organisations (such as those listed below) 

To access these services, you need to make a referral

Help from other organisations

St George’s Hospital Adult Hearing and Hearing Aid Service and Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals Audiology Department can supply NHS hearing aids, carry out repairs and re-tubing, and supply batteries.  

There is a free app and web-based emergency service for British Sign Language users called Signature 999 BSL. It can connect you to interpreters remotely who can relay the conversation with the emergency services call handler.  

Sign Health, the deaf health charity, offers support and advice on health and wellbeing challenges you might face. 

Royal Association for Deaf People (RAD) creates and delivers services for deaf people. 

Sign health also offers a domestic abuse service.

The national hearing loss charity RNID offers a range of support and information including ear health, technology and assistive devices, employment access, your rights and more. 

The charity AbilityNet has online resources and volunteers who can help people with disabilities use all types of technology.  

Employment support for sensory impaired people

Along with many of the specific sensory loss charities, Job Centre Plus has disability employment advisers at local Job Centres who can help you find a job and gain new skills, if you are a job seeker. They can also tell you about disability-supportive employers in your area. 

Disability Rights UK has lots of information on your rights and can help with looking for vacancies, apprenticeships, applications, interviews and more.

Sensory impairment referral

For more support and information you can refer yourself to our Sensory Team, or a health or care professional, relative or friend, can make a referral for you. 

Email: ascfirstresponse@merton.gov.uk
Telephone: 020 8545 4388  
SMS: 07903 235 382  

Support for children and young people

We have different services for children and young people.