HRF in Sweden have recently posted nine sound-smart steps to a conversation-friendly Sweden
1. Become sound smart. How is the sound environment around you? It is time to start thinking about our sound environment, acquire knowledge and consider the call for conversation friendly Sweden! Read more about what HRF want and what you can do on www.befriasamtalet.se.
2. Use your consumer power.
Does it sound bad at a restaurant? Do you have difficulty in understanding what is being said? Then you’re probably not alone. So dare to say and choose to visit cafes, restaurants and other places where the sound environment is good. Your choice will give you power as a customer and consumer.
3. Make the sound environment into an integral part of environmental policy.
Four million people in Sweden have a problem with bad sound environments. Yet it is one of our most overlooked environmental issues. Now we need policies and action plans for a community with a good sound environment.
4. Increase and sharpen laws, regulations and guidelines.
Vague wordings and weakness rules allow developers, municipalities, employers and others responsible to give low priority to the sound environment. It is time for a shake-up. Government, and parliament must ensure that we have strong, clear regulatory framework.
5. Strengthened requirements for facilities for education and childcare.
Sound environment has become the children’s major environmental problem. Today, there is such an uproar in schools, preschools and after-school which both children and staff suffer. This cannot continue and now we have regulations that require an optimal acoustic environment in the locations of education and childcare.
6. Make the sound environment into an integral part of OSH.
How does it really work? In the office? In the lunchroom? Too few employers and unions have realised that noisy environments is a widespread problem that impairs efficiency, comfort and health. Even fewer do anything about it. It is high time to change that.
7. More conversation friendly cafes / restaurants.
Good food and good company in friendly sound environments. The Swedish people really want this! Cafes, restaurants and other similar industries must start taking the sound environment seriously.
8. Educate key people.
Architects and interior designers, environmental health inspectors, building inspectors, property managers and many other professionals need more knowledge about the noise environment. Education is the key to conversation-friendly rooms.
9. More research on the sound environment.
Loud noise damages our hearing, we know relatively little about this but what about the sound that disturbs us and lasts for a long time? How can different sound environments get better? We get more and more answers but still have more questions. Now we need more research on our most common sound environment problems.
For more info click here to see our previous post on this topic