Morrisons Pinchbeck staff ‘sign’ up to learn SSE

Front row (L-R) Rose-Marie Day, Jo Lane (Tutor), Sally Lewis.
Middle row (L-R) Michelle Earth, Gail Ridley, Mary Acres, Kayleigh Taylor.
Back row (L-R) Dale Pateman, Helen Enderby, Susan Ratcliff Mitchell and Andy Fuller.
Front row (L-R) Rose-Marie Day, Jo Lane (Tutor), Sally Lewis. Middle row (L-R) Michelle Earth, Gail Ridley, Mary Acres, Kayleigh Taylor. Back row (L-R) Dale Pateman, Helen Enderby, Susan Ratcliff Mitchell and Andy Fuller.
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Staff at the Morrisons store in Pinchbeck are attempting to take customer care to another level.

After several people showed an interest in learning basic sign language, the Morrisons Pinchbeck SSE (Sign-Supported English) group was formed in September.

The group was founded by Jo Lane from SENSE and Dale Pateman, who is a butcher at the store.

Jo has worked for SENSE for nearly 15 years and uses Sign-Supported English (as well as other forms of signing) in her daily role.

It is her dream to enable all deaf/blind people to be fully integrated into society. She believes that no one with any disability should feel, or be made to feel, isolated.

Dale’s interest in SSE stems from befriending a deaf lady who works at the store part-time.

Unable to communicate with her, he taught himself rudimentary signing skills and became very good friends with her through this medium.

Jo was approached by Dale with regards the possibility of teaching a small group of Morrisons staff basic SSE to aid them further in assisting deaf and deaf/blind people in making their shopping experience better.

Jo was so excited by the idea that she took it to her senior management team in SENSE who gave their full support and blessing.

What makes it so special is that neither Jo nor any of the Morrisons team are paid for this.

They are all volunteering and doing these courses after hours and in their own time.

The group has been a rousing success and people are returning week after week to increase their vocabulary.

Sign is now being used on the shop floor and staff already have had a couple of successful interactions with deaf customers.

The group thanked Jo Lane for giving up her time to teach these lessons, and to Dale Pateman for getting the project off the ground.

They also thanked Jason Savage (store general manager) and Sandy Sewell (store HR manager) for allowing the use of company property and the training room.