Skip all navigation Skip to page navigation

DHHS Home | A-Z Site Map | Get Updates | Divisions | About Us | Contacts | En Español

NC Department of Health and Human Services Division of Services for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing
 
 

About Us

The Division of Services for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing (DSDHH) provides not only direct services to individuals with hearing loss and the agencies and businesses that serve them but also the resources and linkages to programs and services all across North Carolina. DSDHH’s specially-trained staff, many of whom are Deaf, Hard of Hearing or Deaf-Blind, are housed at its seven Regional Centers located throughout the state. Thanks to their specialized and critical support, many North Carolinians with hearing loss are leading self-sufficient, productive and fulfilling lives.

Vision

The vision of the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services is that all North Carolinians will enjoy optimal health and well-being.

The N.C Division of Services for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing works to ensure that all Deaf, Hard of Hearing, or Deaf-Blind North Carolinians have the ability to communicate their needs and to receive information easily and effectively in all aspects of their lives. 

Mission

The mission of the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services is, in collaboration with our partners, to protect the health and safety of all North Carolinians and provides essential human services.

The N.C. Division of Services for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing, in collaboration with our partners, works to provide Deaf, Hard of Hearing and Deaf-Blind North Carolinians and their families the information, skills and tools they need to achieve effective communication and access to resources in their communities, resulting in independence and full participation in society.

Who We Serve

Remarkable is the wide variety of customers served by DSDHH; hearing loss knows no boundaries, including geography, age, gender, race, national origin or socioeconomic status. And hearing loss indirectly touches the lives of many other North Carolinians, including family members, employers, businesses, emergency services personnel and other service providers. DSDHH's customers include all North Carolinians who have questions, concerns or needs affecting Deaf, Hard of Hearing and Deaf-Blind individuals.
Customers served include but are not limited to the following:

  • Individuals: Deaf, Hard of Hearing, Deaf-Blind, Visually-Impaired Hard of Hearing, Family Members, Children of Deaf Adults, Speech-Impaired, Sign Language Interpreters
  • Private and Public Agencies: Federal, State and Local Government Agencies, Law Enforcement Agencies, Judicial Systems, Human Service Agencies, Emergency Service Agencies
  • Medical and Health Care Facilities: Public and Private Hospitals, Medical and Dental offices, Counseling Centers, Nursing Facilities
  • Community Organizations: Self-Help and Support Groups, Chambers of Commerce, United Way, Public Libraries, Museums, Faith-Based Organizations, Consumer-Based Organizations, Parks and Recreation
  • Education Services: Public and Private Schools, Colleges and Universities, Vocational Schools
  • Businesses: Retail Stores and Chains, Hotels, Realtors, Restaurants, Corporations

Where Are We?

Map of Regional Centers

History

1977 Four Community Service Centers created (now called Regional Centers).
1978 The North Carolina Council for the Hearing Impaired (the Council) served as the primary
state organization serving Deaf, Hard of Hearing and Deaf-Blind individuals under the
leadership of William Peace.
1983 Morganton Regional Center opened.
1985 Wilmington Regional Center opened.
1989 Pursuant to the NCGS 143B- 216.31 and 143B-216.33, the Council was restructured
and renamed as the Division of Services for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing with William Peace as Director.

Pursuant to the NCGS 62-157, Telecommunications Relay Service began allowing Deaf,
Hard of Hearing and Deaf-Blind people to use the state's telecommunications system to
communicate with resources, including businesses in their communities.
1991 Frank Turk was hired as the second Director upon William Peace’s departure.
1994 New staff added with funding provided by the General Assembly.
1996 Greensboro Regional Center opened.
1997 Frank Turk, Director of DSDHH, departed after six years at the helm. Craig Greene,
Deputy Director, assumed the responsibility as Interim Director.
1998 The Division of Early Intervention and Education was formed, resulting in the removal
from DSDHH management of three schools for the deaf (located in Morganton, Greensboro
and Wilson) and a number of positions and programs.
1999 George McCoy assumed responsibility as Interim Director.

The NCGA amended GS 62-157 to allow DHHS to use up to four (4) cents per access line
per month to surcharge for distribution of telecommunications equipment to
eligible North Carolinians.
2002 Linda Harrington became the director of DSDHH.
2003 The NCGA amended GS 62-157 to extend the surcharge to wireless service.

NCGS 90D provides for the regulation of persons offering interpreting or transliterating
services to the Deaf, Hard of Hearing or Deaf-Blind individuals.
2005 Jan Withers assumed responsibility as Interim Director.
2006 Jan Withers became the Director of DSDHH and continues to serve in this capacity.

Statutes Governing the N.C. Division of Services for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing

  1. NCGS 143B-216.33: Division of Services for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing: creation, powers and duties
  2. NCGS 143B-216.34: Division of Services for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing: temporary loan program established
  3. NCGS 62-157: Telecommunications Relay Service

DSDHH Administrative Rules

DSDHH Administrative Rules

 

 

State of North Carolina Home Page