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Walt Disney World Resort Offers Services For Guests Who Are Deaf Or Hard Of Hearing

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- The Walt Disney World Resort offers various services for guests who are Deaf or hard of hearing. The world famous vacation destination, which includes the Magic Kingdom Park, Epcot, Disney-MGM Studios, and Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park, has many services available so guests with hearing disabilities may experience the numerous facilities Disney has to offer. "Disney's theme parks have always been at the forefront of accommodating guests with disabilities. Indeed, the parks have received numerous awards for their achievements," said Al Weiss, president of Walt Disney World Resort. "We believe that through our efforts, we will remain leaders in this important area."

Currently, services in the Disney theme parks include the following: selected Sign Language interpreted performances, Reflective, Video and/or Handheld Captioning at certain locations, TTY availability, Written Aids, and Assistive Listening Systems. At Walt Disney World Resort Hotels, services include in-room TTYs, closed-captioned televisions, and various alerting devices.

Sign Language interpretation is provided for guests at live theme park shows with a minimum of seven days notice. Currently, shows are interpreted on a rotating basis as follows: Sundays and Wednesdays at the Disney-MGM Studios; Mondays and Thursdays at the Magic Kingdom Park; Tuesdays and Fridays at Epcot; Saturdays at Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park. Guests can request this service by calling Walt Disney World Resort Information at 407-824-4321 (Voice) or 407-827-5141 (TTY). Guests who request this service will be contacted prior to their visit with an appropriate show schedule. Additionally, Sign Language interpreters will be provided, if requested, for any additional shows or programs where communication is integral to the experience. Arrangements can be made for a specific performance with a minimum of two weeks notice.

Reflective Captioning (also known as "Rear Window" captioning) provides personal captioning for many theater-type attractions throughout the theme parks. The system uses an LED display to project desired captions onto an acrylic panel placed in front of the guest. To utilize Reflective Captioning, guests should ask a host or hostess at the designated attractions for assistance.

Video Captioning is available on many caption-ready television monitors designated with a "CC" symbol and can be turned on by remote control. Remote control Activators are available through theme park Guest Relations for a minimal deposit.

One of the most innovative services is the new Handheld Captioning system. This portable captioning system uses a wireless handheld receiver to display text in attractions where fixed captioning systems are impractical, such as moving ride vehicles. Guests should inquire at Guest Relations within any of the four Theme Parks for additional information.

Guest Assistance Packets containing dialogue, narrations, flashlights, and pen and paper are available at or near the performance areas or entrances for most shows and attractions. Guests should contact a host or hostess at the attraction for assistance.

Assistive Listening Systems utilize a lightweight wireless device that receives a signal from overhead transmitters at certain locations in order to amplify sound. Receivers are available through Guest Relations for a minimal deposit.

Pay telephones equipped with amplified handsets as well as TTYs are widely available throughout the Walt Disney World Resort Resort.

To obtain further information about the services for guests with disabilities, visit the Walt Disney World Resort website at www.disneyworld.com or contact Walt Disney World Resort Information at 407-824-4321 (Voice) or 407-827-5141 (TTY).

(January 2003)

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