1st United Church – Salmon Arm, BC
1st United Church / Salmon Arm is one of the largest and probably the most community active churches in the North Okanagan. Auris Loops successfully installed hearing loops, initially in their sanctuary and a year later in their multipurpose hall.
Auris Loops had a proven track record of having installed over 100 hearing loops in the Okanagan (with Salmon Arm being the most densely looped area in Canada). This installation would be a major job that required multiple meetings, liaison and preparation with church leadership and church technical managers.
Previous to installing the Auris Loop, the church had used other hearing assist technology such as FM systems: they proved to be poor in audio reproduction, inconvenient for the operatives to administer, and posed hygiene concerns from passing around the headsets during Covid-19. The Auris Hearing Loop overcame these issues. Here is a quote from Lee Fraser the Technical Director:
“Auris Loop – an opportunity to enhance sound in your worship space. This is an addition which works with your present sound system to allow those with hearing issues to once again hear clearly. It works in two fashions; with those who already have hearing aids equipped with T-coils, when the t-coil is activated, all sound goes directly through their hearing aids. Additionally, for those whose hearing is down but not yet to the hearing aid requirement, a special receiver attached to earphones or headphones brings full clarity to sound. For some time, we at First United Church in Salmon Arm recognized that there were hearing issues with several members of our congregation. After some research, we discovered the Auris Loop System and contacted David Moore, the proprietor. He came to our church, showed us how the system works, and how it would be installed. The results after the installation have been extremely positive. Members who had been unable to hear clearly now had a new sense of belonging directly rather than being on the fringe”. – Lee Fraser, Chief Sound Technician.
Since the Auris hearing loop has been installed, many more hard of hearing users are fully engaged – so much so that 2 articles appeared in the local paper. Parishioner Dan MacQuarrie was so impressed with the Auris Loop that he advocated for and achieved the installation of a further Auris Loop into the council chambers.
Here is an excerpt from the 2nd newspaper article: https://www.saobserver.net/columns/column-remembering-a-well-known-salmon-arm-activist/
“One of Dan’s latest quests to city council was to ask that an Auris Hearing Loop be installed in council chambers, which can eliminate background noise or low volume. He pointed out the considerable stigma of being hard of hearing and noted Canada is the only G7 country that does not have ‘loss of hearing’ in its disability act. He was successful in having the device installed not only in council chambers but in several other places”.