Have you ever wondered how Georgians who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind or have difficulty speaking call a friend, family member or local business? Years ago, the answer was that they didn’t. All that has changed, however, thanks to Georgia Relay, a free public communications service created under the Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990.
Here’s how Relay works: using an assistive communications device — such as a text telephone or videophone — people who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind or have difficulty speaking type or sign their phone conversations to a hearing party. A specially trained Communications Assistant (CA) is on the line to “relay” the conversation back and forth, voicing the Relay user’s words to the hearing party, and typing or signing the hearing party’s words back to the Relay user. To place calls through Georgia Relay, users simply need to dial 7-1-1 first.
Although Georgia Relay was implemented more than two decades ago, Relay users still experience difficulties when calling local businesses, often because the person answering the phone is not familiar with the ease of a Georgia Relay call. That’s why THA Group is participating in Georgia Relay Partner, an exciting initiative designed to educate businesses and their employees about how to use Georgia Relay to communicate with customers who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind or have difficulty speaking. As a Georgia Relay Partner, THA Group instituted a company-wide Relay communications training program. The training program gave employees a chance to experience the simple steps for receiving and placing Relay calls so that you can easily conduct business through Georgia Relay whenever needed.
As part of the Partner program, THA Group will also be incorporating a Georgia Relay Partner logo into our marketing and advertising materials to let Relay users know that we welcome them as customers and are educated and trained in handling Georgia Relay calls.
For more information about our participation in Georgia Relay Partner, contact THA Group at 912-233-2334. To view a current list of Georgia Relay Partners, visit www.GeorgiaRelay.com.