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Citizen advice now available through 'live chat'

People with hearing or speech difficulties will now be able to access information as new instant-chat service launched.

Image: John Birdsall/John Birdsall/Press Association Images

A NEW SERVICE has been launched to allow people with hearing and speech difficulties to access citizens information.

The instant chat service was developed by the staff and directors of Citizens Information Phone Service and launched by the Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton today.

The Live Advisor Service is targeted specifically towards people who incur problems communicating by telephone, particularly those with hearing and speech difficulties.

The chat service will provide “customer-focused information on all aspects of public and social services,” including the health service, social welfare and employment, said Burton.

She added, “The importance of information provision cannot be over emphasised as it is a key element in assisting people to participate in society.”

The objective of the information provider is to bridge the gap between the citizen in need and the wide variety of services that are available to meet those needs. Information services which can direct individuals, particularly those who are marginalised, to their rights and entitlements, are essential.”

The changing economic climate has led to a greater demand for the services provided by the Citizen Information Phone Service. So far this year,  some 115,000 requests for information have been responded to.

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The chat service is available from 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday by logging on to www.ciboard.ie/liveadvisor.

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