Tuesday, October 11, 2005

OCDAC Newsletter October 11, 2005

Dear Friends,

This week we have an educational booth at the Accessible Los Angeles
Expo and Employment Fair. It will be similar to what we had at the
Diversity Day Job Fair.

Some of our associates have been making a little noise over the
accessibility of Washington Mutual banks. We believe it's a good
canvassing target this time and would suggest testing the cash
dispensing machines for accessibility as well as the teller/customer
calling procedures.

According to a report released last week by Cornell University, based
on Census Bureau data, the employment rate for Americans age 21 to 64
with sensory, physical, mental, or self-care disabilities fell to
38.3% in 2004, from 40.8% in 2001, http://www.ilr.cornell.edu/edi/
and this is a a strong sign that we are still needed to be around to
help the deaf and disabled find jobs and lead them to productive
lifestyles. We still have a long way to go and your continued support
is still needed of Orange County Deaf Advocacy Center's effort to be
part of the leadership leading the deaf and disabled toward the
promised land of fairness, equality, and justice.

We all need to communicate with the National Association of the Deaf
and discourage them from getting involved with the Pinchas verses CISS
case. Rafael Pinchas, a CISS ombudsman, and CISS, a global deaf
sports organization, have been feuding for years over a variety of
issues and it appears that CISS has recently resorted to 'crab theory'
distractions which is a strong sign that CISS is about to take a big
fall in the near future and we don't want CISS dragging NAD down with
them. The editor has seen this pattern happen a few times elsewhere.
It's important we as a community contact NAD through their contact
information on their www.nad.org website and ask them to pull out of
the Pinchas verses CISS case and focus on improving the lives of the
deaf community members. The last thing we need to see is one of our
trusted guardian organizations be dragged into an embarrassing scandal
that will waste their resources on dealing with the case itself than
functioning as advocates of the deaf communities.

OCDAC Communications

-------------< INSIDE NEWS >

We are almost ready for our educational booth at 'Mata Expo'
(Mata.tv's version of Deaf Expo)

We badly need a volunteer coordinator who will help us keep in touch
with volunteers and to contact them and make sure they are given the
opportunities to participate in our activities. Our volunteer list has
grown dramatically in the past few months. We really need help
managing them.

We have decided to eliminate our Rose parade fundraiser and replace it
with an illumination booth at a bigger times square like New Year's
event at the Orange County Fairgrounds. We have started fundrasising
activities to build up the stock for this event.

We also need committees for the Kids Day (formerly Pirate's) festival,
Silverado Festival, and Winter Festival fundraisers as well.

We have started on the planning our free Valentine's day dance event
next February. This will be supported by vendors who purchased booths
and we already have 2 vendors lined up for this.

-------------< ANNOUNCEMENT >

Our new ASL class start September 28th! For more info and to download
a copy of
the registration form go to http://asl.deafadvocacy.org

-------------< OUTSIDE NEWS >

Gap widens between working-age people with and without disabilities in
the workforce, reports shows

Supreme Court hears special ed dispute

Plans to include deaf, blind and elderly in portal

YMCA sets reception for 40-year (deaf) worker

Inner ear implants may benefit deaf infants

Deaf man sues city

`Roll Down' is held to heighten awareness of disabled's plight

Battalion helps improve sports club for disabled Iraqi

New Group To Tackle Disabled Parking

Workshop for hearing-impaired kids at PGI


The Orange County American Sign Language Meetup Group -
/ - meets each 3rd Wednesdays of the
The Orange County Deaf & Hearing Impaired Meetup Group -
38/ - meets each 1st Saturdays of the month.


Deaf Social at the Block at Orange. This Friday October 14 from 6 pm
to 11 pm at the Starbucks Cafe area on the southeast side of the Block
at Orange mall.

For more info, please consult the http://www.theblockatorange.com/


The Orange County American Sign Language October Meetup event

Wednesday, October 19, 7:00 PM

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf
17595 Harvard Ave #B
Irvine, CA
(949) 660-1332

Let's meet and sign!

-------------< ANNOUNCEMENT >

Please visit our iGive store http://www.igive.com/ocdac

-------------< DEAF GRAPEVINE >

Disabled Employees Sue Rehab Administration for Discriminatory Job

Sept. 23, 2005
Contact: Heather White, 202-331-9260

A group of disabled and older Rehabilitation Services Administration
employees sued Department of Education Secretary Margaret Spellings on
Sept. 20, 2005 in federal court in Washington, D.C., asking the court
to keep her from firing them when the new fiscal year begins on Oct.
1. RSA distributes federal grant monies to state and local
organizations to provide job and independent living skills training to
severely handicapped adults.

The employees work in regional offices around the country, where they
help grant recipients comply with the law and help them run the
programs more effectively. RSA's programs assist millions of disabled
people in communities across the nation, and its employees provide a
valuable knowledge base and institutional continuity for State VR
agencies, which are often underfunded and have high staff turnover.

In February 2005, the agency announced it would close the regional
offices and terminate all the employees, including the 24 plaintiffs,
seventeen of whom are disabled and five of whom are Blind. Only the 65
RSA regional employees, within the 4,500-employee Department of
Education, were targeted for downsizing. According to RSA
Commissioner Dr. Joanne Wilson, who is blind, a Department of
Education official told her that RSA has "too many Blind employees."
Dr. Wilson resigned from the agency in protest of the closing of the
regional offices. In recent years the RSA parent organization, the
Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, routinely
made illegal inquiries about job applicants' disabilities before
approving their hiring.

The hiring of qualified Blind job applicants has been either delayed
or rejected on at least three occasions in the last two years.

RSA contends that closing the regional offices will cut costs, and
headquarters employees will take over the work that was done in the
regions. George Chuzi, who is representing the group, says, "RSA
apparently plans to help the local VR organizations by remote
control." He is with Washington, D.C. law firm Kalijarvi, Chuzi and
Newman, where associate Heather White also represents the plaintiffs.

The law suit notes that both Houses of Congress approved RSA's budget
and appropriated more than was requested for some programs. The group
questions why the Department of Education did not ask for enough money
to pay the salaries of all of its employees. "They are motivated by
equal parts dislike of people with disabilities and dislike of federal
assistance to people with disabilities," says Wilson. "The agency is
destroying (our) lives,"said Mike Evans, a visually impaired
Vocational Rehabilitation Program Specialist in Dallas, TX.

The law suit alleges that the decisions to close the regional offices
and terminate the employees was motivated by the agency's culture of
discrimination against people with disabilities, especially the Blind.
They also point to the agency's failure to offer to transfer them to
headquarters in violation of the law on "transfers of function," which
allow federal employees to move with their jobs when the functions
they perform are moved from one competitive area to another.

The agency claims that this action is not a transfer of function,
while simultaneously insisting that all functions that were previously
performed in the regional offices will now be performed from
headquarters. The duties performed in the regions will go on, but
without the regional employees and their expertise.

According to the law suit, however, headquarters employees are
unfamiliar with the duties of the regional employees, making even
"remote control" impossible.

The group is seeking a temporary restraining order preventing RSA from
firing the regional employees, who allege that with the high cost of
health insurance and their preexisting conditions, once they are fired
they will not be able to afford health care for themselves and their

The National Federation of the Blind has filed a related lawsuit on
behalf of blind vendors who will be affected by the RSA's closing of
regional offices. Both cases are now before the U.S. District Court
for the District of Columbia.

Heather G. White, Esq., Kalijarvi, Chuzi & Newman, P.C., 1901 L
Street, NW, Suite 610, Washington, DC 20036 Tel: (202) 331-9260 Fax:
(202) 872-9562

-------------< BULLETIN >

Contact: Damien LaVera – 202-863-8148

October 5, 2005

Dean Statement on National Disability Employment Awareness Month

Washington, DC - Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean
issued the following statement in celebration of National Disability
Employment Awareness Month:

"This month marks the 60th year that Americans celebrate the skills
and know-how that people with disabilities bring to our workplace
every day. With more than six million people with disabilities
participating in the American workforce, we can all be proud of the
doors of opportunity that have been opened to our friends, coworkers
and neighbors with disabilities.

"But great progress can never be an excuse to turn our backs on the
great work that remains to be done. We can never rest until every
American enjoys equal opportunity to contribute and equal access to
the American Dream. Sadly, too many people with disabilities are
denied those opportunities, are left to live in poverty, and are
victimized by a system that promotes their institutionalization
instead of encouraging and enabling them to live independently in
their own homes and communities.

"People with disabilities deserve better. They deserve leaders who
provide resources instead of slogans, and who are committed to
protecting and expanding their hard-earned rights and personal
freedoms. Four years after the Bush Administration introduced its New
Freedom Initiative, the White House and the Republicans in Congress
have failed to provide the resources needed to help expand access and
opportunities for people with disabilities. In fact, while the
President's most recent budget proposal zeroed out key employment
assistance programs, Democrats in Congress are leading the fight to
restore those funds.

"We can do better. Democrats are committed to ensuring that the next
Supreme Court Justice will not use the High Court to roll back the
rights and freedoms that people with disabilities have fought so hard
for, and to fully funding programs that help them live full,
independent lives. Because we understand that when any one of us is
held back, everyone of us suffers."

-------------< ANNOUNCEMENT >

Please visit our bookstore that has related books and different kinds of
assistive living devices at http://store.deafadvocacy.org

-------------< ADVOCACY NEWS >

Progress Report: the ADA and Employment

By Mark Johnson, Shepherd Center Director of Advocacy

July 26th, 2005 marks the 15th anniversary of an important date in
history – the enactment of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Since the passage of the ADA, people with disabilities report feeling
less discrimination. But as far as ADA's impact on jobs – the National
Organization on Disability reports employment of people with
disabilities has only risen from 32 to 35 percent in the past four years.

It is a tribute to Shepherd Center's continuum of care that our
return-to-work numbers are in fact much higher than the national
average at 43 percent.

If we consider the national percentages, it would seem that the
promise of the ADA has fallen a bit short. Given the robust economic
expansion of the 1990s and advancements in technology, disability
advocates expected a higher increase.

What explains the disappointing numbers? Some cite the rise in
work-limiting impairments and chronic conditions within the overall
population. Others argue that the easing of eligibility standards and
increases in the relative benefits of Social Security disability
programs (SSI and SSDI) are to blame.

While the ADA has not proved a panacea for this complex challenge,
significant progress has been made. One of the most notable post ADA
achievements is extended Medicare coverage (through the Ticket to Work
program) of SSDI beneficiaries so employees can return to work without
fear of losing health benefits. The program also expands Medicaid
eligibility categories for certain working people with severe
disabilities so that they can continue to receive benefits after their
income or condition improves. As a result of this law, about half the
states in the U.S. allow employed individuals to buy into Medicaid.

And to assist businesses in complying with the ADA, tax credits and
tax deductions have been put into place. The establishment of a
national Business Leadership Network
(http://www.dol.gov/odep/programs/business.htm) in 34 states, the
District of Columbia and Puerto Rico is an additional resource.

But despite 15 years and the creation of incentives for job seekers
and employers, the unemployment rate of people with disabilities
remains unacceptably high. Why?

Although many employers express a willingness to employ people with
disabilities, unspoken misconceptions about hiring and accommodation
still exist. People with disabilities continue to be grossly
underrepresented in the labor market, despite their desire and ability
to work.

In general, barriers to employment fall into five categories:

1. Lack of Professional Networking Relationships
People with disabilities often face a unique challenge in cultivating
strong professional networking relationships because they socialize
less frequently with non-disabled peers. Because of the strong
correlation between relationships and career opportunities, employers
and people with disabilities must work harder to address this obstacle.

2. Lack of Information and Understanding
Employers are often still uncomfortable hiring people with
disabilities because they lack experience, information and knowledge
about providing reasonable accommodations. Many employers still
believe the nature of work their company does cannot be performed by
people with disabilities. In addition, they fear the cost of
accommodations and potential legal expenses associated with the ADA.

3. Lack of Incentives and Experience
Many people with disabilities don't return to work because they fear
losing health insurance and worry that a lack of training and
experience may make them less competitive in the workplace. While
employers must do their part to address workers' concerns about health
insurance, job seekers must empower themselves to return to the
workplace by attaining the job skills demanded by today's workplace.

4. Lack of Collaboration
Currently employment and career education services for people with
disabilities seldom share information and collaborate to make a
difference, a huge area for potential improvement.

5. Lack of Access to Transportation
Lack of transportation is a persistent problem for people with
disabilities who want to return to work. People with a disability are
twice as likely to have inadequate transportation than are
non-disabled people.

To remove these barriers, a number of diverse strategies are needed:

First, President Clinton's Executive Order to hire 100,000 qualified
individuals with disabilities as federal employees must be renewed.

In addition, the federal government must play a major role in ensuring
health insurance for people with disabilities. By continuing to expand
and strengthen incentives to enter the labor force, providing training
for high-growth, high-earnings occupations, and assistance with
placing workers in appropriate jobs, we can make significant strides.

People with disabilities are capable of thriving in the labor market,
but until barrier removal becomes a top priority, unemployment of
people with disabilities will remain high.

-------------< DEAF QUOTES >

"To learn ASL fluently, it takes ... between seven and 10 year of full
immersion ... one must socialize fully with the deaf community upon
invitation and have adequate opportunities to develop language
skills." Terri Cutforth, president of the Quincy Deaf Club

-------------< ANNOUNCEMENT >

Do you shop at Albertsons or Sav-on stores? You can get a free
community partners card at those stores and then add it to our list of
supporters. A percent of what you buy will go to helping our Deaf
youth program. If you already have a school or other program that you
are supporting, don't worry, you can add your card to support our
program too! There are two ways to add your card. You can email your
First and Last name with your phone number and community partners card
number to [email protected] or you can download and print our
Albertsons / Sav-on Community Partners signup forms at
http://www.deafadvocacy.org/AlbertsonsSignup.pdf and have your
friends, neighbors, associates, and relatives sign up as supporters
and then mail the form to the address on the
form. To reach our funding goal we need 25,000 supporters who shop at
Albertsons / Sav-on. And remember to use your community partners card
when you shop at Albertsons or Sav-on.

-------------< COMMUNITY BULLHORN >

PRESS RELEASE - October 5, 2005

From: www.deafsportlawsuit.com









New York, USA - A reliable report was received by this website, in
which Jerald Jordan, the so-called CISS/Deaflympics Honorary Member
for Life, denied his role with the election running procedure of the
recently-concluded 39th CISS/Deaflympics Congress held in Melbourne,

As reported in previous communication messages by this Ombudsman,
nearly 151 votes were missing or went unaccounted during the election
procedure for different CISS/Deaflympics Executive Committee positions


"I did not run the elections in Melbourne," Jordan was quoted as
saying in his own written statement.

However, many witnesses, including the foreign Congress delegates,
have told this Ombudsman that Jordan played a very active and
influential role at the Congress floor proceedings, including in the
election session.

During his 2005 Deaflympic Summer Games' stay, this Ombudsman met
nearly 69 Congress delegates representing 50 nations.

By the way, under Jordan's influence and orders, surrounded by the
Australian police, security men, a detective and a score of Australian
and international sign language interpreters, this Ombudsman was
denied an entry to witness the Congress activities as an observer

It is also still unclear as to who was the last and final person at
the Congress floor premises to gather all the counted and blank
printed voting ballots from the scrutineers after the elections for
various Executive Committee positions were completed.

In spite of Jordan's above denial, now, let's see and judge how much
influence and role in the affairs of the CISS/Deaflympics Jordan - "a
behind-the-scenes player" -has been having lately.

Despite his widely-publicized status - obviously a false one - as "a
CISS retiree" since 1995, Jordan's spirit, involvement and presence -
a heavy one - in the organization is still going on. Jordan's
continued meddling in the affairs of the CISS/Deaflympics has, as a
result, been impoverishing and stagnating the work of the
CISS/Deaflympics organization in many different ways, judicially,
organizationally and financially.

Judicially, as a leading member of the organization's Legal
Commission, Jordan irresponsibly allowed himself as well as the
organization's leaders to massively commit "dopings" inside the
organization's legal structure. That is, over 434 ( ! ) rule
violations were broken up in its legal system between 2000 and 2005


Interestingly, during his leadership and guidance in the organization
between 1971 and to now, Jordan has treated any athlete who committed
an act of doping accordingly - and very harshly. Now, it is Jordan who
himself broke up many organization's rules, but, so far, he, like
Ammons, has been left unpunished or unrepentant! He, in his personal
and nationalistic interests and to the detriment of international deaf
sports, was the one to permit the anti-constitutional participation of
his own USA team delegations at the last three consecutive Deaflympic
Games in 2001, 2003 and 2005. By violating up certain rules in the
Constitution and by ignoring the sacred CISS/Deaflympics Motto "EQUAL
THROUGH SPORT", Jordan covertly and overtly campaigned for his
subordinate, dependant and compatriot Ammons, which enabled her to win
the presidential elections at the recent 39th Congress.

Organizationally, since this past January and to now, the
Jordan-influenced CISS/Deaflympics administration has issued only one
full-scale e-News Magazine - a July, 2005 release, which featured
various stories, photos and Presidential Message. Also, since this
past January, the organization has been unable to fill up vacancies
for 6 various Technical Director ( TD ) positions in football, ice
hockey, snowboarding, judo, karate and taekwondo. Five additional TD
positions - swimming, water polo, cycling, handball and tennis - were
filed up in total breach of the CISS/Deaflympics Constitution rules.
Moreover, to date, not all 94 Nation-Members, including the USA, have
yet fully met their respective membership's financial obligations
before the organization. Jordan was ( and still is ) in charge of
the medievally and disastrously-prepared Deaflympic Games Database
Project. Over 985 historical errors and inconsistencies were spotted
in Jordan's work as the self-styled and one-man Database Project


Financially, the organization has been failing to improve its finances
plus considerable amount of its money ( and time ) was spent on the
lawsuit matters personally involving the 2 defendants-anarchists -
Jordan and his crony Ammons - before the USA District Courts in
Maryland and South Dakota. These lawsuit fee expenses were
single-handedly utilized and taken away by Jordan and Ammons from the
organization's Treasury funds in advance, that is, without prior
knowledge, consultation and consent of all 94 Nation-Members ( the
clear and eloquent fact is that the organization of the
CISS/Deaflympics was not and is not named as a specific party to five
different lawsuit matters at all ! ). The organization is also still
struggling to collect the 2005 Deaflympic Summer Games individiual
and team non-participation penalty fees from many of its
Nation-Members ( to date, the anarchically and secretly-managed Ammons
administration has been reluctant to disclose to the world the list of
the names of its Nation-Members that have failed to pay off their
annual membership dues and 2005 Deaflympics non-participation penalty
fees ).

Thus, by learning of the foregoing facts which directly and indirectly
implicate Jordan's active involvement in organization's different
affairs, does this mean that Jordan did not have any influence and
role in the 39th Congress election running in Australia recently?


2 deaf or hard of hearing mortgage consultants needed for a Riverside,
California mortgage company.

All candidates interested in any of the job opportunities are required
to apply for our job placement services. Our intake form is at

-------------< ANNOUNCEMENT >

We recycle used cell phones, empty printer and toner cartridges! If
you have any of these to unload from your hands, please send or drop
them at our agency at 2960 Main Street, A100, Irvine, California 92614


Begin your journey toward self-sufficiency by becoming a .WS domain
reseller! Become an owner of a _________.WS website for only $10 a
month! Includes hosting, email, and easy to use website design tools
to create a professional looking website. And all _________.WS owners
automatically become .WS website resellers and it comes with an
automatic selling program. All you have to do is lead people to your
reseller website! The WS stands for 'website'! This is an excellent
self-sufficiency opportunity for people who want to be on the top of
the .WS cyber real estate market. Take a look at the ASL video at
http://www.deafadvocacy.org/cbep/website05.wmv and if you're
interested in this self-sufficiency program please go to
http://website.ws/ocdac for an easy sign
up. Or if you do not know American Sign Language, go straight to the
reseller page at http://website.ws/ocdac for a video of the program.

-------------< LETTERS >

FW: Deaflympics Leaders.....

From: William Schyman - Oct 10, 2005
October 10, 2005

attention: Mr. Jean Laurent Bourquin
IOC Sports Manager

Dear Mr. Bourquin:

This past September 6th you sent me your e-mail message-reply, which
was also e-mailed to Ms. Ammons, the Deaflympics President.

In my August 28, 2005 letter to your IOC Executive Board and
President, I raised the issue of the alleged Deaflympics Congress
election voting fraud held recently in Australia.

Regretfully, to this minute, I have not received any response from Ms.
Ammons at all.

You wrote to say that the "IOC does not interfere with Recognized
Organization's internal matters."

However, I must educate the IOC Executive Board and you that there is
a wide consensus in our deaf community that since the IOC is funding
the Deaflympics organization in some way, the IOC should do something
with the questionable and unethical conduct of some top leaders of the
Deaflympics organization.

Everyone in the deaf sports world, let me reiterate, looks up at the
IOC as "a big brother," therefore, the IOC is also part of life of the
deaf sports world.

I received reliable information that the IOC gave to the Deaflympics
its financial assistance in the amount of $110,083.00 in 2002,
$112,601.00 in 2003 and this year it was about $130,000.00.

Is it a logical, justified and appropriate manner for the IOC to
provide financial assistance to an international sports organization
such as the Deaflympics while the leaders of that same Deaflympics
organization are engaged in their acts of anarchism, election fraud,
manipulation and deception before the whole world?

I write this follow up letter to you because I am very concerned about
the way the present Deaflympics leaders conduct their business in the
organization in general as well as the present and future status of
the international deaf sports in particular.

As a former basketball player of world-class stature and deaf sports
advocate ( plus I was named as one of GREAT DEAF AMERICANS in the
511-paged book published by the two authors in the USA - Matthew Scott
Moore and Robert F. Panara in 1996 ), all my life was and is still
dedicated to the betterment and advancement of the deaf sports.

In light of the above, I do again ask your people to take appropriate
action, including requesting Ms. Ammons to provide detailed
explanation as to what actually happened with the 2005 Deaflympics
Congress elections.

Sincerely Yours,

William Schyman,
Deaf Sports Advocate
Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, USA


Dear Sponsors, Teams and Potential Participants,

Regrettably, I am writing this letter to inform the public that the
2005 Palm Beach Wiffleball World Series for November 12, 2005 has been
canceled due to personal commitments that require my full attention.

My daughter, who was born with a hearing disability, will be having a
surgery sometime in November to have a cochlear implant which will
help improve her hearing and speech development. Unfortunately, this
will not allow me personally the time to plan and carry out the high
quality tournament that you have experienced in the past.

However, I plan to resume this exciting event in November 2006. I will
provide with additional information as it becomes available.

Thank you very much for all of your previous support and I look
forward to your participation in 2006.

Thank You,
Curtis Pride
Los Angeles Angels Outfielder

( From togetherwithpride.org website )
-------------< EPILOG >

If you wish to contribute to this newsletter, feel free to send in
news, stories, and opinions relating to the disability community. Your
support in this effort to move the disability community forward will
be greatly appreciated. We will continue to aggressively pursue
justice, fairness, and equality for the disability community as it has
been doing since November 1996. We have chosen
that EDUCATION is the best way to accomplish this objective.

The Orange County Deaf Advocacy Center is a community based
organization that puts people with disabilities first in their
advocacy for equal opportunities in safety, health, and productive living.

The Orange County Deaf Advocacy Center provides services for disabled
individuals and their families in our community who need help in
navigating the social services maze. Every day people go without
proper food, shelter, and essential medical care every day due to a
variety of factors including low wages, job loss, injuries, illness,
age, domestic violence, or divorce. While all of us are susceptible to
hard times, disabled individuals are at the most risk. With the
generous support of people like you, we are able to help many of these
families and individuals not only to meet essential daily needs, but
to work toward a brighter future with programs in job training,
education, counseling, elderly assistance, and temporary housing.

Feel free to forward this email message to anyone and any of your
personal mailing lists so we can get the important messages out far
and wide and encourage them to sign up for our weekly newsletter.

To subscribe to this newsletter go to
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ocdacnewsletter/ or send a blank email
to [email protected]

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