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People Inc. Expands Services to Include Programs for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Feb 12, 2024

Deaf Services and Advocacy Efforts Across the Region to be Strengthened

Deaf Access Services has merged with People Inc., expanding People Inc.’s comprehensive suite of human services programs. Sharing a common mission to serve the community where needed, the merger was part of a long-term plan when Deaf Access Services affiliated with People Inc. in 2018.

The merger adds another element to People Inc.’s portfolio of programs that includes senior services, affordable housing, health care, as well as services for people with developmental and intellectual disabilities. It also strengthens and sustains Deaf services and advocacy efforts throughout the Buffalo and Rochester areas. Since the affiliation, there has been a substantial increase in services provided.

“The Deaf services People Inc. now provides were built from the ground up by the Deaf and hard of hearing community through Deaf Access Services. People Inc. took that foundation very much to heart with this affiliation, and now with the merger,” said Anne McCaffrey, People Inc. president and CEO. “It has been rewarding to expand these unique access efforts and we expect that growth to continue.”

“The merger ensured no interruption in quality essential programming,” McCaffrey said. “Increased communication access, awareness and opportunities are the focus of the programs and central to People Inc.’s mission of helping people live a fulfilling life.”

Additions to People Inc. services through the merger include: American Sign Language (ASL) Interpreting, Captioning Access Real-Time Translation (CART), assistance with long-term employment, ASL classes, support groups, deaf refugee services, connections to resources, and more.

“We are working to build a bridge that allows equity in communication and all levels of access for Deaf and hard of hearing people,” said David Wantuck, director of deaf community services. “With the merger, we have the momentum necessary to meet, and even exceed, our goals.”


ABOUT PEOPLE INC.: People Inc. provides an array of support for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families, as well as health care services, senior services, services for the Deaf and hard of hearing, and affordable housing. Built on a strong foundation of innovation, collaboration, community and inclusion, People Inc. helps people throughout Western New York and Rochester achieve greater degrees of independence and productivity.

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