Washington, D.C. (ABC7) — JPMorgan Chase has officially opened the first retail branch designed to serve the deaf and hard of hearing community.
The branch, located in Washington, DC’s H Street corridor, offers state of the art technology and design elements incorporated to best serve people with hearing loss.
The firm is also announcing a new, $250,000 philanthropic commitment to Gallaudet University’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Institute to strengthen career pathways for deaf and hard of hearing students.
“As a bank, we want to make financial services available to all customers, including people with disabilities and their families,” said Jim Sinocchi, Head of Office of Disability Inclusion, JPMorgan Chase. “The technology and design of our new branch will allow the deaf and hard of hearing customers a chance to easily access our services if and when it’s convenient for them.”
The new H Street location will feature Chase’s newest branch design as well as state-of-the-art technology, including:
On-demand video remote interpreting service
T-loop Bluetooth technology that allows employees to speak directly with customers
Remote control camera technology that allows employees to communicate with customers on screens where they are seated in the branch
Digital screens with captions enabled
Other facts about the branch:
Six of the branch’s nine employees fluent in American Sign Language (ASL); three identify as deaf or hard of hearing
Visual / light indicators installed to alert deaf/hard of hearing when someone has entered secure areas of the branch (Teller line, ATM rooms, etc.)
Art installation created by a teacher that teaches deaf students
Branch booths have sheen fabric so customers may see shadows behind them