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British Stammering Association

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Submitted By jammface23
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British Stammering Association
The BSA is a national membership organisation established in 1978, for adults and children who stammer, their friends and families, speech and language therapists and other professionals. Based in London, it is run by people who stammer. BSA promotes awareness of stammering, offers advice, information and support to all whose lives are affected by stammering, initiates and supports research into stammering and identifies and promotes effective therapies. It describes stammering as a neurological issue and estimates that about 700,000 people in the UK have a stammer.
In September 2010, the Association announced that Labour front-bench politician Ed Balls MP, who is now Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, had become a patron of the Association. BSA chief executive Norbert Lieckfeldt paid tribute to him for having been very public in his declaration that he too knows what it's like to stammer and has at times struggled with his speech.
Lieckfeldt describes stammering as "the hidden disability", said the charity had received calls from members who said people were asking them about their stammer for the first time, because of The King's Speech. The film had created a "good opportunity" for people to talk about stammering. He said: “Suddenly it has become a thing that can be talked about, which is very important for us...For those people who are engaged in conversations about it, their situation will have changed for the better.
However, the Association criticised comedian Lenny Henry for his opening sketch for the 2011 Comic Relief, during which he spoofed the film and grew impatient with Colin Firth's portrayal of King George VI as he stammered over his speech. The Sun reported that the British Stammering Association had branded the sketch as "a gross and disgusting gleefulness at pointing out someone else's misfortune".
Speaking in support of the Association's stance, Labour MP Kate Hoey said: "For many people, particularly youngsters, stammering is not a joke – we need to ensure that help and support is given as early as possible and, most of all, we need to educate the public to understand the impact it has on people for the whole of their lives".

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