Sign of the times: unique campaign promotes safety message to the deaf community

  • Advertising
  • November 21, 2010
  • StopPress Team
Sign of the times: unique campaign promotes safety message to the deaf community

Youtube Video There's only one word spoken in the Fire Service's new TVC. But that doesn't mean there's a shortage of communication.

The campaign, which was developed in-house and filmed by Double Cove (M&C Saatchi is the Fire Service's usual agency), uses a firefighter to show those who are deaf or hearing impaired how they can contact police, fire or ambulance emergency services by texting 111. And the Fire Service claims it is the country's first television advertisement that uses New Zealand Sign Language and is aimed directly at this community (Air New Zealand's sign language-based response to a Listener editorial earlier this year was more about petty squabbling with the media than bringing attention to the deaf community).

The Text 111 initiative, which was launched in October, is essential for New Zealanders who can't use a phone in an emergency due to hearing loss. And it helps empower members of the deaf community so they can access emergency help when needed and feel safer that their requests can be responded to immediately.

The service was developed in collaboration with New Zealand’s emergency services and Deaf Aotearoa. To date, more than 400 people have registered and already several emergency texts have been responded to.

“The Text 111 initiative has been a major event for the Deaf community and incredibly empowering," says Deaf Aotearoa chief executive Rachel Noble. "We are thrilled that the Fire Service has developed this commercial in our language, as it will help educate even more Deaf and hearing impaired people about the service.Personal safety has understandably always been a very high priority for deaf people. We want to have the freedom to live our lives in the same manner as any hearing person, this includes our ability to contact emergency services as required.”

All is required is for deaf and hearing impaired people to register their mobile phone number at, then complete their registration at But the Fire Service are at pains to point out that the text service is not a substitute for calling the emergency services on 111, which is still the quickest way to get help.

This is a community discussion forum. Comment is free but please respect our rules:

  1. Don’t be abusive or use sweary type words
  2. Don’t break the law: libel, slander and defamatory comments are forbidden
  3. Don’t resort to name-calling, mean-spiritedness, or slagging off
  4. Don’t pretend to be someone else.

If we find you doing these things, your comments will be edited without recourse and you may be asked to go away and reconsider your actions.
We respect the right to free speech and anonymous comments. Don’t abuse the privilege.

Vice and Sky call on Kiwis to leave a voicemail

  • Advertising
  • October 21, 2016
  • StopPress Team
Vice and Sky call on Kiwis to leave a voicemail

Global youth media company Vice is set to expand its sub-brand Viceland in the local market in partnership with Sky. And in an effort to engage with audiences, it's inviting Kiwis to call in and say anything that pops into their minds.

Read more
Next page
Results for

StopPress provides essential industry news and intelligence, updated daily. And the digital newsletter delivers the latest news to your inbox twice a week — for free!

©2009–2015 Tangible Media. All rights reserved.
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Privacy policy.


Contact Vernene Medcalf at +64 21 628 200 to advertise in StopPress.

View Media Kit