Wednesday, April 05, 2006

OCDAC Newsletter April 5, 2006

Dear Friends,

The South California Association of Deaf Blind had their Easter Party
last Saturday in Highland Park, California and the results were just
grand. Over 30 people came to chat, paint eggs, enjoy food and
drinks, raffle, and even sang birthday song to Chris and Flora. Photos
of this great event are in the newsletter's photo album.
http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/ocdacnewsletter/photos/browse/c610

Our client service usage has almost doubled from last year as the
preliminary statistical reports are showing. This is why we have been
consuming more of our resources and dealing with increased operational
costs. We now have a trained and qualified volunteer in the office
late into the night to handle our clients that contact our office
while the management is resting in their homes.

We have been invited to do a fundraiser booth at the Family Day picnic
event in Rossmoor, California. This event takes place on may 7, 2006.
And I'm waiting for clarification on what we can sell there whether
it be food or merchandise.

We are seeing the positive results from our educational goodie bags
given away at the OC-Mixer event last month and we hope this will open
us to the possibility of doing this again at the LA-Mixer event thats
coming up this summer.

Our new ASL classes start in May. They will be taught by Arlynn
Tedder who has been an ASL tutor in Golden West College for over 20
years. Our class fees are much much cheaper than what is being
publicized in the Deaf California News mailing list. Please take a
look at our ASL Class flyer and tell your friends, associates, and
relatives about it.
Http://www.deafadvocacy.org/education/flyers/aslclass.pdf

The grapevine section has interesting information for those who have
concerns over SSI and SSDI eligibility and determination changes that
have been on the table for implementation.

Macy's Community Shopping Day 2006, an in-store shopping event and
fundraiser for charities in the Orange County community, will be held
on May 12, 2006 at Macy's South Coast Plaza. We have 200 tickets to
sell. We need to sell at least 100 of the tickets at $10 each. And
we'll need at least 5 or more volunteers on hand as well. Besides a
good operation at Macy's Community Shopping Day would be as good as a
decent birthday gift to the editor from our communities.

This weekly newsletter will soon be available in print form to be
mailed out each week. The price is going to be $90 per year for the
print version and the price is highly reasonable due to it's very rich
deaf and disability advocacy content and very little advertising. Last
week we announced the incorrect price for it and our apologies for the
inconvenience. This still beats out the other deaf print news. They
will also be available in other alternative formats like floppies, and
in large print for people with vision impairments.

Beth has been working on the braille embosser and she has been able to
get the embosser to work with the computer and still meets minor
anomolies and she is upbeat she will be able to tackle the anomolies
soon and make this newsletter available in braille.

OCDAC Communications
ocdac@deafadvocacy.org

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

With our subscribership from the international communities increasing
at a steady pace, we wish to make this newsletter accessible to them
and the easiest way to accomplish this is by directing them to
http://www.babelfish.altavista.com/ and entering
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ocdacnewsletter/ in the website
translation box and the babelfish will help our international
subscribers become strong advocates for the deaf and disability
communities.

We are putting together a fantastic golf tournament at a golf course
near our office and the date would be for this fantastic event is
Friday September 22, 2006 and we will have a fantastic game, food, and
prizes for all players. We are also putting together a walk-a-thon
fundraiser event to take place on May 20, 2006 at the Mile Square Park.

We have began on our giant Orange County Fair educational booth
planning for this upcoming summer. This year's theme is 'Flower
Power' and its a retro theme. We have submitted the application for
our fundraiser booth. Your prayers are needed to help the fair
management be considerate and allow us conduct fundraising as they
know that the good results will be put into good use to advance
positive relationships between the deaf and the hearing communities.

We have started a Campbell's product label collection campaign to help
us raise the means to get supplies for our office Start saving your
campbells product labels today and mail them to us on the first week
of each month. We have aproximately 1050 subscribers and if each one
of them accumulates and sends us 900-1000 labels a month, we'd be able
to get lots of new equipment for our office and internal and external
education programs! Lets get those labels coming, the program ends in
June. Our big thanks to those who sent in their labels.

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

Take a look at our new magazine fundraiser and this is one of the ways
you can help us do the good work for the deaf and disabled communities.

The URL is http://www.magfundraising.com/GroupPage.aspx?e=788159

-------------< OUTSIDE NEWS PART 1/3 >

Shared secrets reveal much suffering in silence
http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=410863&date=3/25/2006

RIAA Sues Deaf Woman For Downloading Music
http://www.metalunderground.com/news/details.cfm?newsid=18665

National Deaf Poker Tour A Reality
http://www.pokernews.com/news/2006/3/national-deaf-poker-tour.htm

Deaf youngsters at your service
http://www.lancashireeveningtelegraph.co.uk/news/newsheadlines/display.var.72043\
7.0.deaf_youngsters_at_your_service.php


Deaf, blind schooling costs get scrutiny
http://www.oregonlive.com/news/oregonian/index.ssf?/base/news/114386551650910.xm\
l&coll=7


New Miss Deaf Texas crowned
http://www.kvue.com/news/local/stories/040306kvuemissdeaftx-cb.8ade0f0d.html

Visual smoke detectors needed to help hearing impaired
http://www.hamiltonspectator.com/NASApp/cs/ContentServer?pagename=hamilton/Layou\
t/Article_Type1&c=Article&cid=1141426213526&call_pageid=1020420665036&col=111287\
6262536


Hearing-impaired program director nearing retirement
http://www.sun-herald.com/NewsArchive2/030906/tp9ch4.htm?date=030906&story=tp9ch\
4.htm


Disabled man left to struggle at rubbish tip
http://www.chichestertoday.co.uk/ViewArticle2.aspx?SectionID=452&ArticleID=14091\
89


Jobs proposal to help disabled
http://www.gulf-daily-news.com/Story.asp?Article=139921&Sn=BNEW&IssueID=29015

Health Net Hosts Disabled Veterans Ski Event at Annual Winter Sports
Clinic in Colorado
http://finanzen.net/news/news_detail.asp?NewsNr=386020

Klang Council ready to cancel parking compounds received by disabled
http://www.nst.com.my/Current_News/nst/Tuesday/NewsBreak/20060404170714/Article/\
index_html


-------------< CALIFORNIA DEAFIE HAPPENINGS >

COME TO OUR MEETUPS!

The Orange County American Sign Language Meetup Group -
http://asl.meetup.com/37/ - and the he Orange County Deaf & Hearing
Impaired Meetup Group http://deaf.meetup.com/38/ meets each 3rd
Fridays of the month.

Come to our meetup on Friday April 21, 2006.

The Orange County American Sign Language & Orange County Deaf &
Hearing Impaired December Green Meetup

When:
Friday, March 21, 7:00 PM

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

What:
Meet the 2 meetups!
A $2.00 donation suggested per person to help us cover the costs of
the meetup membership program. If you give us a $5.00 donation
instead, we'll give you an "I Love You" Handsign Stamp commemorative pin!

We have been considering using our office, especially the classroom,
for our meetups and we have the means to offer snacks for a small
donation to the people that come to the meetups hosted by our office.
The food table will have cold drinks, danish pastry, popcorn, veggies
and dip, chips and dip, flavored coffees, and hot chocolate.
===================================

ASL BINGO!

Come learn ASL while playing bingo!

AT THE OCDAC CLASSROOM

May 27, 2006
4pm to 7pm
$1 per card per game – 7 cards for $5
Great Prizes! Players must be at least 18 years of age.

PROCEEDS BENEFIT ORANGE COUNTY DEAF ADVOCACY CENTER

For more info contact bethko@gmail.com

===================================

Our SSP classes are less taxing to the community.

Our next SSP training class is on April 15, 2006 from 12 noon to 5 pm.

This is for people interested in working with the Deaf-Blind. The
class will take place in our classroom at 2960 Main Street A102 ,
Irvine, CA 92614

There is a fee of $20 for this 5 hour workshop as we have to pay for
the room use and printing of the handbook and other materials.

This class is required to work with our Deaf-Blind clients. Please
contact me with any questions.

Beth Koenig
bethko@gmail.com
(714) 414-7982

===================================

DEAF SEMINAR SATURDAYS

We are having two 2 hour FREE educational seminars to our community
members.

Disaster preparedness
May 27, 2006, 10 am – 12 Noon and 1pm – 3pm

Getting the most from your Sidekick
June 24, 2006, 10 am – 12 Noon and 1pm – 3pm

Healthy Hands and Eyes workshop
August 26, 2006, 10 am – 12 Noon and 1pm – 3pm

Dealing with creditors
September 30, 2006, 10 am – 12 Noon and 1pm – 3pm

Deaf motorist safety
October 28, 2006, 10 am – 12 Noon and 1pm – 3pm

Deaf employment rights
November 25, 2006, 10 am – 12 Noon and 1pm – 3pm

Safety at home
December 30, 2006, 10 am – 12 Noon and 1pm – 3pm

Classes take place at the OCDAC classroom. RSVP is required and 8
students maximum per class. Reply back with reservation choices. And
the seminars are always FREE.

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

Even though most of us working on computers only work on one, the
average American depends on more than 264 computers per day—from the
tiniest microprocessor to the largest mainframe! That is a lot of
people depending on a lot of computers! Think of how much money could
go to the Orange County Deaf Advocacy Center if 264 supporters bought
one computer each at www.iGive.com/ocdac, where up to 26% of every
purchase is donated to the Orange County Deaf Advocacy Center! At
www.iGive.com/ocdac, membership is free! So hurry up and visit the
Mall at www.iGive.com/ocdac, where you can shop at 600+ stores for all
your favorite electronics and computers from Dell, HP Shopping, Buy,
Computers4SURE, The Apple Store, SONY, and Gateway!

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

Announcing the final rule establishing a new disability determination
process for the Social Security Administration

Commissioner Jo Anne B. Barnhart announced that the final rule
establishing a new disability determination process is on public
display at the Office of the Federal Register.

As Executive Director of Disability Service Improvement, I join
Commissioner Barnhart in thanking you for your comments and
suggestions throughout the development of the final rule.

To learn more, I invite you to visit
www.socialsecurity.gov/disability-new-approach.

I look forward to continuing our dialogue during implementation.

Sincerely,

Mary Chatel

===========================

Editor's Commentary

Drastic Social Security rule changes for Title II Old Age, Survivors,
and Disability Insurance and SSI programs renews our calls for
self-reliance ideas for organizations who serve the deaf and disabled
and our very own idea, our California Disability Gaming Initiative
idea and that can be found at
http://www.deafadvocacy.org/community/cdgicinfo.pdf is an idea that
works for Native Americans. Why shouldn't it work for the Disability
communities? The proposed Social Security rules will limit appeals
and create a new process that is less about truth-seeking and more
hostile to applicants.

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

April HUD Campaign - 3/06

ADAPT recently announced its "April HUD Campaign" and requested
disability advocates throughout the country to take four specific
actions:

"One of the biggest barriers to getting and keeping folks out of
institutions is the ability to access affordable, accessible,
integrated housing. ADAPT has proposed to HUD Secretary Aflphonso
Jackson a beginning solution to this problem called "ACCESS ACROSS
AMERICA." "ACCESS ACROSS AMERICA" would coordinate the receipt to a
Section 8 voucher when an individual is transitioning out of or is in
jeopardy of going into an institution.

Secretary Jackson has ignored the need for accessible, affordable,
integrated housing for people with disabilities.

To get the attention of HUD and Secretary Jackson ADAPT is proposing
an April HUD Campaign:

1. Go to your local HUD or PHA offices on a weekly basis and
distribute the "Wanted Poster," (a copy of which can be obtained by
emailing bobkafka@earthlink.net. ) (Expand the distribution to other
areas if you think it would be effective.)

2. Meet with your local PHA about designating vouchers for folks
transitioning out or in jeopardy of going into institutions.

3. Work with other organization to get their support for "ACCESS
ACROSS AMERICA" and ask them to distribute the "Wanted Poster."

4. Hold some type of press event outlining the drastic need for
accessible, affordable, integrated housing.

For an Institution Free America, The ADAPT Community Passionately fighting
for what does not exist, YET!"

Steve Gold, The Disability Odyssey continues

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

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

-------------< OUTSIDE NEWS PART 2/3 >

Campus hosts second biennial Deaf Studies Today! conference
http://www.netxnews.net/vnews/display.v/ART/2006/04/02/443088c3a4189

Newspaper for the deaf
http://www.mmail.com.my/Current_News/MM/Monday/National/20060403111013/Article/i\
ndex_html


Deaf shuttlers look to sport's inclusion in 1st SEA Deaf Games
http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/201328/1/.html

Silent Chemistry
http://www.ntid.rit.edu/media/full_text.php?article_id=493

Good news for hearing-impaired
http://newstodaynet.com/28mar/rf7.htm

This lab promises hope for the hearing impaired
http://cities.expressindia.com/fullstory.php?newsid=173650

Special screenings for the hearing-impaired welcome
http://www.news-leader.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060306/OPINIONS01/603060\
317/1091


Disabled gets arrest warrant over parking
http://www.mmail.com.my/Current_News/MM/Monday/National/20060403111210/Article/i\
ndex_html


Shahrizat: Disabled persons should be treated with more dignity
http://www.sun2surf.com/article.cfm?id=13657

Commentary: SAT unfair to learning-disabled students
http://www.abqtrib.com/albq/op_commentaries/article/0,2565,ALBQ_19866_4592014,00\
.html


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

Students with Intellectual Disabilities May Be Eligible for Work Study

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 30, 2006

Students with Intellectual Disabilities One Step Closer To College
Work Study Jobs

Amendment to the Higher Education Act Passed by the U.S. House of
Representatives

WASHINGTON, DC - An amendment introduced by Congressman Pete Sessions
(R-TX) to HR 609, the College Access and Opportunity Act of 2005, will
allow students with intellectual disabilities to obtain valuable, paid
work experience in college work study jobs while pursuing
postsecondary studies. The amendment, which passed on a voice vote on
March 29, is a real breakthrough for the growing number of students
with intellectual disabilities who participate in postsecondary
programs at two and four-year colleges and universities. HR 609 is the
bill that will reauthorize the Higher Education Act.

In introducing the amendment, Rep. Sessions stated, "My goal is to
help make it possible for these students to achieve their higher
education goals and attain gainful employment," Sessions continued.
"Greater productivity through employment will provide students with
intellectual disabilities opportunities for greater self-sufficiency,
more independence, and the ability to save for retirement and long
term care." Rep. Howard "Buck" McKeon (R-CA), Chairman of the House
Education and the Workforce Committee, and Rep. George Miller (D-CA),
ranking Democrat on the Committee, both spoke in favor of the
amendment. The amendment passed with strong bipartisan support.

Students with intellectual disabilities (mental retardation) have made
significant progress under the Individuals with Disabilities Education
Act (IDEA) and the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). Today, over 100
postsecondary programs are available (www.thinkcollege.net), offering
students academic, independent living and vocational education and
training, but lacking access to financial aid. This amendment will
help these students pay for their postsecondary expenses, obtain
valuable employment experience, and prepare them for gainful
employment in the community. Federal work-study funds to these
students would be dispersed from current work-study resources and
implemented at the discretion of higher education institutions.

"As a result of IDEA, students with intellectual disabilities have
made great strides. The outcome they want--the finish line, if you
will--is employment and independent living. This amendment will help
these students reach the finish line," said Madeleine Will, Vice
President of Public Policy for the National Down Syndrome Society. "We
are deeply grateful to Congressman Pete Sessions for his leadership
and to Congressmen McKeon and Miller for their support."

Due to provisions in the Higher Education Act, students with
intellectual disabilities and their families usually are not able to
access federal student financial aid (loans, grants, or work study).
While school districts sometimes provide financial support, the
largest source of funds is the students' parents, who are already
stretched thin financially. The National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS)
celebrates the success of Congressman Sessions's amendment to the
College Access and Opportunity Act of 2005. NDSS strongly believes
that students with intellectual disabilities should have access to
postsecondary education, and the resulting employment and independent
living opportunities, just as their non-disabled peers do.

About NDSS:

The National Down Syndrome Society is a nonprofit organization with
more than 200 affiliates nationwide representing the more than 350,000
Americans who have this genetic condition. NDSS is committed to being
the national leader in supporting and enhancing the quality of life,
and realizing the potential of all people with Down syndrome. We
demonstrate this commitment through our education, research and
advocacy initiatives that benefit people with Down syndrome and their
families. To learn more about NDSS, visit www.ndss.org.

====================================

Policy Proposals for Improving SSDI, SSI and Medicaid Work Incentives
Prepared By Jensen and Silverstein

Allen Jensen and Robert "Bobby" Silverstein recently proposed policies
for improving SSDI work incentives (e.g., addressing the cash cliff).
Policies for updating and improving SSI and Medicaid work incentives
are also proposed. These proposals are the product of a research
project funded by the Social Security Administration (SSA) through a
sub-award from the Disability Research Institute (DRI) at the
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Additional funding was
provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

The policy proposals developed by the project team (referred to as the
Gradual Reduction Choice Option and Related Policy Proposals)
recognize the heterogeneous nature of the SSDI disability population
and the many variables impacting the ability of persons with severe
disabilities to sustain a substantial level of earnings over a
significant period of time. The policy proposals are designed to
enhance the quality of life and financial independence of SSDI and SSI
beneficiaries and at the same time facilitate net long-range cost
savings (or at least not result in additional costs) to the Social
Security Trust Fund, the U.S. Treasury, and the states.

In a nutshell, the proposals provide SSDI beneficiaries with an
informed choice (which entails tradeoffs) between current SSDI policy
(which includes the cash cliff) and an alternative, which includes a
$1 for $2 gradual reduction in benefits after an initial earned income
disregard of one-half of the dollar value of the monthly Substantial
Gainful Activity (SGA) level and continued attachment to the SSDI
program when benefits are reduced to zero as long as the individual's
severe impairments continue. The proposals also encourage work for
both the SSDI and SSI populations by making the programs' work
incentives similar and thus easier to understand and utilize. In
addition, the project team suggests related policies for enhancing
SSI, Section 1619, and Medicaid work incentives. Finally, the project
team developed a framework for conducting cost estimates of an SSDI
policy which entails a $1 for $2 gradual reduction of benefits as
earnings increase.

Links to the papers prepared by the project staff are as follows:

* SSDI Gradual Reduction Choice Proposal and Related Policy Proposals
- www.dri.uiuc.edu/research/p05-12h/default.htm

* A Framework for Preparing Cost Estimates for SSDI $1 for $2 Gradual
Reduction Demonstration Proposals
www.dri.uiuc.edu/research/p05-12h/default.htm

Contact Information
-------------------
Allen Jensen Robert Silverstein
Director, Director,
Work Incentives Project Center for the Study and
Center for Health Services Advancement of Disability Policy
Research and Policy 1660 L Street, NW, Suite 701
George Washington University Washington, D.C. 20036
2021 K Street, N.W. Suite 800
Washington, DC 20006
Phone: (202)530-2319 (202) 783-5111
Fax: (202)530-2336 (202) 783-8250
Email: ihoacj@gwumc.edu Bobby@CSADP.org
Web: www.medicaidbuyin.org www.disabilitypolicycenter.org

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

"The deaf community can have their say now," Malaysian Federation of
the Deaf president Mohamad Sazali Shaari of the MyDeaf News.

-------------< 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 ocdac@deafadvocacy.org or you can download and print our
Albertsons / Sav-on Community Partners signup forms at
http://www.deafadvocacy.org/community/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 >

Lisa Bothwell Joins TDI Team as CEPIN National Public Relations Specialist

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 3, 2006

Contact Person: Neil McDevitt
National CEPIN Coordinator
Community Emergency Preparedness Information Network, TDI
nmcdevitt@cepintdi.org
www.cepintdi.org
TTY or DL/VP: 301-589-3006
Voice: 301-589-3786
Fax: 301-589-3797

LISA BOTHWELL JOINS TDI TEAM AS CEPIN NATIONAL PUBLIC RELATIONS SPECIALIST

SILVER SPRING, Md. - Telecommunications for the Deaf and Hard of
Hearing, Inc. (TDI) announces its appointment of Lisa Bothwell as the
new Community Emergency Preparedness Information Network (CEPIN)
National Public Relations Specialist.

"TDI and the CEPIN project extend a big welcome to Lisa as the newest
member of the team," said Neil McDevitt, CEPIN National Coordinator.
"Lisa brings a new perspective and an unbeatable work ethic to the
project as we look to the future."

Bothwell recently graduated from Texas State University-San Marcos
with a bachelor's degree in public relations and minor in psychology.
A student body senator and a leader in the American Sign Language
Club, she played a pivotal role in successfully reinstating American
Sign Language classes at Texas State. She was also immensely involved
in planning and coordinating the Deaf World event on campus. Her work
experience stems from her tenure as a copy editor at The University
Star and intern at 10x Media, the Make-A-Wish Foundation and Raging
Sky Records.

"We are also fortunate to have Lisa's PR expertise as she works with
our four regional centers and our partners to develop effective
communication vehicles with the larger Deaf, Hard of Hearing and
DeafBlind populations," said McDevitt. "We look forward to having her
manage all of our public relations efforts including a newly revamped
Web site which should be coming shortly."

The purpose of CEPIN brings back memories for Bothwell.

"When Sept. 11 happened, students, faculty and staff crowded around
televisions that were placed in the hallways of the student center so
everyone could watch the story unfold between classes," said Bothwell.
"I saw the airplanes crash into the World Trade Center and got a basic
understanding of what was happening, but I could not understand why or
how since the captioning had been left off."

The televisions did not have a clearly-designated button for closed
captioning and no remote controls were available. She worked with her
university administration to ensure captioning would be readily
available and easily accessible on televisions across campus.

Bothwell is optimistic about the potential growth of this job.

"My goal is to become a resource for emergency responders and the Deaf
and Hard of Hearing," said Bothwell. "I feel I can accomplish that
goal through networking with community leaders across the nation from
both the emergency response and Deaf and Hard of Hearing sectors."

The CEPIN project was established in 2004 when the U.S. Department of
Homeland Security awarded TDI a $1.5 million grant to set up this
model community education course to raise awareness among emergency
responders and Deaf and Hard of Hearing individuals about issues both
groups encountered in emergency situations.

###

About CEPIN:
The CEPIN Project is coordinated by Telecommunications for the Deaf
and Hard of Hearing, Inc. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security
awarded TDI nearly $1.5 million for the two-year CEPIN project, which
focuses on developing model community education programs for emergency
responders and Deaf and Hard of Hearing consumers. CEPIN has regional
specialists at four regional centers across the United States. The
regional centers are as follows:

* New England & Great Lakes Region - DEAF, Inc.: www.deafinc.org
* Mid-Atlantic & Southeast Region - Northern Virginia Resource Center
for Deaf & Hard of Hearing Persons: www.nvrc.org
* Midwest & Southwest Region - CSD Of Oklahoma: www.c-s-d.org
* West & Hawaii Region - Deaf Counseling Advocacy and Referral Agency:
www.dcara.org

For more information about CEPIN, visit www.cepintdi.org.

* * * *

About TDI:
Telecommunications for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Inc. is a
nonprofit advocacy organization that promotes equal access to
telecommunications, media and information technology for individuals
who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing. Since 1968, TDI has successfully
advocated for a variety of federal legislation to improve the lives of
people with hearing loss, including the Hearing Aid Compatibility Act
of 1988, the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Television
Decoder Circuitry Act, both of 1990, and the Telecommunications Act of
1996. In addition, TDI advocates for administrative rules and policies
that will provide greater access to wireless technology, as well as
complete and high-quality captioning of television programs. Since its
inception, TDI has promoted equal access to 9-1-1 centers and other
public safety answering points, and is now working to ensure full
access for Deaf and Hard of Hearing people to information during
natural or manmade disasters and other types of emergencies. TDI
annually publishes a national directory and resource guide, commonly
known as The Blue Book, which is a popular resource book for people
with hearing loss, as well as The GA-SK Quarterly News Magazine. For
more information about TDI, visit www.tdi-online.org.

-------------< OUTSIDE NEWS PART 3/3 >

Awareness drive on hearing impaired
http://www.thepeninsulaqatar.com/Display_news.asp?section=Local_News&subsection=\
Qatar+News&month=March2006&file=Local_News2006030525216.xml


A handy tool for the hearing impaired
http://www.hindu.com/2006/03/29/stories/2006032919990200.htm

Robot suit to hel(p) disabled mountaineer climb Swiss Alp
http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/dy/features/science/20060404TDY03002.htm

Disabled groups want more from 9MP
http://www.mmail.com.my/Current_News/MM/Monday/National/20060403110924/Article/i\
ndex_html


Bonnie Funk bridges gap between hearing and deaf communities
http://www.nashvillecitypaper.com/index.cfm?section_id=12&screen=news&news_id=48\
611


Pride wants deaf children to watch him
http://www.usatoday.com/sports/baseball/al/angels/2006-03-22-pride-focus_x.htm

Local woman, once deaf, plans to take message of hope to Russia
http://www.enewscourier.com/features/local_story_088205412.html?keyword=topstory

Staring abuse straight in the face
http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=410985&date=3/26/2006

A sign of God for the hearing impaired
http://www.timesunion.com/aspstories/story.asp?storyID=467939

-------------< DEAF FRIENDLY BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES >

Begin your journey toward self-sufficiency by becoming a Discovery
Toys consultant! Discovery Toys focuses on learning through play,
with products specifically designed to maximize learning moments, has
proven to be a success as the company has now witnessed an entire
generation grow up with Discovery Toys. Many parents and their adult
children credit DISCOVERY TOYS® products with helping them to develop
core skills and self-esteem, which contributed to their later life
accomplishments and success as adults. Beth Koenig is your Discovery
Toys consultant. Her Discovery Toys website is at
Http://www.discoverthetoys.net and this is a great business
opportunity for people disabilities. Discovery Toys is one of our
supported activities through our Community Business Enterprise Program.

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

I heard that California Trans. Authority or somebody is removing all
the emergency call boxes on the freeways. i am an older deaf person
and can not use a cell phone in the event of an emergency with my car.
Do you know how I am to get assistance in the event of a blowout or
accident?

have you heard about this?

I was hoping to read something in your newsletter. I think you are
doing a very good job in this publication and I find many interesting
articles.

Thank you very much for this publication.

Sincerely, Linda Weiand

==================================

REPLY FROM EDITOR

Thank you very much for your letter and kind comments and allow me to
begin my answer with a graft from the Cal Trans website;

Currently, 29 of the state's 58 counties have call box programs. These
range from the system in Los Angeles County, with more than 4,000 call
boxes, to Humboldt and Del Norte counties, where only a few call boxes
have been installed in particularly isolated areas. Statewide, there
are 15,000 call boxes, lining some 6,300 miles of California highways.
Call boxes throughout California generate more than 100,000 calls per
month. All costs associated with the call box program are paid for by
a $1 annual fee assessed on vehicles registered in the participating
county. Caltrans, the California Highway Patrol and regional "SAFE"
agencies ("Service Authority for Freeways and Expressways") jointly
operate the program. Some counties in California, generally in rural
areas, do not have call boxes. The primary reason is that these
counties do not have enough registered vehicles to purchase, operate
and maintain a system of call boxes.

Here in Orange County, California where we have been a part of a
committee that championed the accessibility of the call box programs,
there is a plan to phase out the call box system and the first part we
will be seeing here in the Orange County area is a 50% reduction of
the call boxes in the county.

You bring up a critical issue faced by many deaf people already in
areas that are not served by the call box programs and we hope that we
can count on organizations like Telecommunications for the Deaf and
Hard of Hearing, Inc. who has received funding to develop answers to
issues like yours. Their CEPIN Project is funded by The U.S.
Department of Homeland Security focuses on developing model community
education programs for emergency responders and Deaf and Hard of
Hearing consumers. We hope CEPIN can come with simple answers to the
lack of call boxes.

I can make a good contribution to developing answers to this issue.
Right now my hands are full and I don't have the resources to develop
these kinds of things at this time. But keep an eye on this
newsletter in the next few weeks as I may come accoss a simple
solution to the issue youre facing.

Richard Roehm
Editor

-------------< EPILOG >

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