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Association for Airline Passenger Rights and Caption First Announce Partnership to Promote Greater Accessibility for Passengers with Hearing Impairments

May 5, 2014

The Association for Airline Passenger Rights, (AAPR) today announced a new partnership with Caption First, a leading communication access company that provides CART, captioning and transcription. The AAPR-Caption First partnership will ensure that realtime captioning services are provided for all AAPR information and programs, thereby making them fully accessible for members who are Deaf or hard of hearing. Realtime captioning is the practice of converting the spoken word into instant text. The partnership also aims to identify best practices to be used within the aviation industry to ensure air travel is made more accessible for passengers with hearing impairments.

In February 2010, AAPR was the first airline passenger rights group to call on the U.S. Department of Transportation to require commercial air carriers to provide closed captioning or subtitles on all in-flight entertainment for passengers with hearing loss. While DOT requires that captioning be available on all safety and information-related videos, it does not enforce the same accessibility standard for in-flight entertainment, such as movies and television shows.

"We are excited to team up with Caption First, who will be aiding us with the conversion of speech into text for all of our programmatic activities," stated Brandon M. Macsata, Executive Director of the Association for Airline Passenger Rights, of the partnership with Caption First. "With our partnership, were taking the necessary steps to provide word-for-word services that are easy to use whenever, wherever and however needed. In other words, were leading by example."

The seeds for the new partnership were [sown] in December 2013, when Caption First served as one of the sponsors for the 1st Annual Airline Accessibility Conference. To learn more about the conference, or download a transcription of it, go to [].

"Caption First is delighted to partner with the Association for Airline Passenger Rights," stated Patricia Graves, President of Caption First. "For too long the communication needs of passengers who are Deaf or hard of hearing have been ignored. We look forward to working with AAPR to create positive changes in the aviation industry."

For more information about the Association for Airline Passenger Rights or its partnership with Caption First, please visit or contact AAPR directly at

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