March 21, 2007
Vol. 3 No. 15
Editor: Tom Willard
Deafweekly is an independent news report for the deaf and hard-of-hearing community that is mailed to subscribers every Wednesday and available to read at www.deafweekly.com. Please visit our website to read current and back issues, sign up for a subscription and advertise. Deafweekly is copyrighted 2007 and any unauthorized use, including reprinting of news, is prohibited. Please support our advertisers; they make it possible for you to receive Deafweekly at no charge.
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JURY SELECTION CONTINUES FOR WRIGHT TRIAL
Jury selection in the Daphne Wright trial should wrap up this week, a week later than first hoped, said the Sioux Falls (S.D.) Argus Leader. Thirty-nine potential jurors have been accepted, about two-thirds of the number needed. Questioning has been slowed by Wright’s minority attributes - she’s black, deaf and a lesbian - and by the fact that the death penalty is in play. Wright, 43, is accused of kidnapping and killing Darlene VanderGiesen, also deaf, in February 2006. If Wright is found guilty, the same jury will decide if she should spend her life in prison or be put to death.
STUDENTS TO PRESS LAWMAKERS ON INTERPRETING NEEDS
Eighteen students from Land O’Lakes (Fla.) High School plan to attend a rally today on the Capitol steps in Tallahassee and visit area lawmakers to discuss issues of importance to the deaf. Specifically, they want lawmakers to pass House Bill 991 and Senate Bill 926, which require sign language interpreters to be licensed. “We thought it would be a great idea for the people to, rather than see numbers on a report, see the people who it affects,” said Lisa Schaefermeyer, the school’s lead interpreter and president of the Florida Registry for Interpreters for the Deaf. The students were looking forward to making their case. “We need certified interpreters,” said Jessica Marrero, 15. “It’s our life.”
DEAF COUPLE’S DAUGHTER DIES IN HIGHWAY CRASH
A group of nearly 300 grieving teenagers who gathered on the Lakewood, Colo. roadway where Samantha Stricklen was killed in a car accident 24 hours earlier heard from the victim’s mother, who told them in sign language, “Please don’t drink and drive!” Samantha, 17, was a passenger in a car hit head-on by a 16-year-old driver who investigators say may have been drinking. Samantha’s parents, Michelle and Bill Stricklen, are both “deaf and mute,” said the Rocky Mountain News, and they spoke at the candlelight vigil through interpreter Bert Kondrotis. “Samantha loved all of you very much,” said Michelle. “You were really wonderful to her.” Added Bill: “She is now here with us.”
PLAN TO COMBINE DEAF, BLIND SCHOOL CAMPUSES OPPOSED
A plan by Ohio state officials to combine the campuses of the schools for the blind and the deaf has come under fire by alumni, reported The Columbus Dispatch. The Ohio State School for the Blind and the Ohio School for the Deaf are located next to one another in Columbus, separated by a ravine, and officials have proposed a five-year, $40 million project to consolidate the two campuses on the deaf school’s 130-acre property to save on operating costs. Forcing blind and deaf students to share the same facilities such as gym and cafeteria could lead to teasing and bullying, said Richard Huebner, president of its alumni association, and will destroy the deaf school’s culture. “We’ll fight this to the bitter end to keep them separate,” he said.
NAD: TIME FOR ACTION ON CAPTIONING IS NOW
It’s time to take action on closed captioning, said the National Association of the Deaf last week. After the Federal Communications Commission ruled in September that nearly 300 TV programs could be shown without captions, the NAD joined other advocacy groups and hundreds of consumers to successfully have the FCC overturn the decision. The FCC then identified 494 programs that requested a waiver of captioning requirements, and advocates filed comments/oppositions to 449 of the requests. (They’ll get to the other 45 soon.) But “these TV programs and the FCC need to hear from you!” said the NAD, and they need to hear from you by March 27. Simply go to www.nad.org/opposeTVwithoutCC and Take Action NOW!
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MAN ARRESTED FOR INTERNET LURING OF CHILD
A deaf Colorado man was arrested Friday in an Internet sex sting, reported the Rocky Mountain News. Carmen Mascitelli III, 25, of Colorado Springs, drove 60 miles to Parker believing he was going to meet an underage girl he met through online chat a week earlier but was arrested by Douglas County deputies when he got there. He was booked into a detention center for investigation of Internet luring of a child, enticement of a child and criminal attempted sex assault on a child.
VIRGINIA MAN GETS 12 MONTHS FOR CHURCH FIRE
A homeless deaf man was found guilty Friday of starting a fire that destroyed a Charlottesville, Va. church last May. Jason Santos was sentenced to 12 months in prison for burglary, arson and petty larceny and ordered to pay $150,000 in restitution to the church, the amount not covered by the church’s insurance, said WCAV. An earlier report indicated that Santos started the fire by accident while cooking in the church kitchen. The fire caused $1.5 million in damage. With time served, Santos, 25, may be released soon.
COLLEGE STUDENTS PROTEST SCARCITY OF CLASSES
About 15 students gathered Monday at Sierra College in Sacramento, Calif. to protest the scarcity of classes for people majoring in deaf studies. According to the Sacramento Bee, the students complained that the classes they need to graduate are not always available. “If they offer a degree,” said Sierra graduate Sarah Hoffman, “we have a right to have classes to finish that degree.” Sierra spokeswoman Sue Michaels said limited class scheduling is a common problem at community colleges and a result of funding issues. “We’re very happy they’re helping highlight this very important issue,” she said.
RED CROSS BRANCH SEEKS OUT DEAF VOLUNTEERS
The American Red Cross branch in Rochester, N.Y. is reaching out to the deaf and hard-of-hearing community to recruit more volunteers, reported 13WHAM. Right now the Red Cross has about 30 such volunteers, but officials want to recruit 20 more. Deaf volunteer Pam Hatch goes out to fires and floods and has helped in Louisiana, working with all hearing people and using an UbiDuo portable wireless device to help communicate. Volunteer Kathy Dollinger-Meyer, also deaf, joined for the challenge. “I wanted to do something different, not just the deaf,” she said. “I wanted to do something in the community.”
SHERIFF IN MISSOURI COUNTY OFFERS EMAIL ACCESS
Deaf people in Cole County, Mo. can now contact the Sheriff’s Department by sending an email via their cell phones, reported the Jefferson City News Tribune. The email address - firstname.lastname@example.org, standing for Law Enforcement Emergency Text - will be monitored constantly by several computers in the sheriff’s office and cost the taxpayers almost nothing. Some say this service may be a first of its kind. “I’ve never seen a law enforcement agency reach out to the deaf community like this,” said Nick Dignan, a church pastor whose parents and grandparents are deaf.
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INDIAN MOTHER KILLS SELF, DEAF DAUGHTER
A 7-year-old deaf girl died with her mother Sunday in a public garden in Vastrapur, India when the mother committed suicide by pouring gasoline on her body and setting herself on fire. The young mother, named Praveena, held her daughter Dhvani in her arms, said the Gujarat Global News Network, and both died. Praveena left a suicide note blaming her husband, a computer repairman, and her in-laws for harassing her about her dowry.
JUDGE ENDS DEAF MAN’S CHILD ABDUCTION TRIAL
A Newcastle, England judge has ended the child abduction trial of 86-year-old Benjamin Fisher because Fisher cannot hear the evidence against him, reported The Evening Chronicle. Fisher, accused of trying to force an 11-year-old girl into his home, cannot instruct his defense team, Newcastle Crown Court Judge Peter Armstrong ruled February 27, and thus the case cannot continue. Fisher is profoundly deaf in one ear, has limited hearing in the other, has little sight and is virtually housebound after a September 2006 assault left him with two broken hips. “My daughter’s life has been destroyed,” said the girl’s mother, “and now we won’t see the man accused of snatching her be put before the courts.”
LONDON BUS RIDERS EXPOSED TO SIGN LANGUAGE
A 30-second film about sign language was shown on more than 350 buses in London on Sunday and Monday, said MayorWatch. The film was produced by deaf people in support of British Sign Language Recognition Day, which was marked Monday at City Hall with a day of British Sign Language film, poetry and performance. Londoners use over 300 languages, noted Mayor Ken Livingstone, and more than 200,000 deaf and hearing people use British and Irish Sign Language. Livingstone, calling BSL “a real, full and living language that is part of a rich cultural heritage,” said he hoped commuters would find the film informative.
CHINESE ADVOCATE AIMS FOR BETTER DEAF LIFE
Yu Bing’s inability to hear or speak does not stop him from speaking out, reported China Daily. Yu, an art professor in the Chinese province of Jilin, has attended every annual meeting of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, China’s top political advisory body, since 2003, where he promotes such ideas as TV captioning - “It’s kind of miserable” without it, he said - and standardized Chinese sign language. Interpreter Xian Shuli was at Yu’s side for the fifth straight year, helping him understand other members and express his own ideas. Yu was particularly excited, said the report, about a government decision in January to recognize “dactylology interpreting” as an official profession.
CAYMAN ISLANDS WELCOMES FIRST AUDIOLOGIST
The Cayman Islands has its first audiologist, Cayman native Annette Stephenson, whose career choice was inspired by her 76-year-old deaf grandfather. Stephenson left the islands to attend college overseas and planned to become a teacher of the deaf, said the Caymanian Compass, but a lecture on audiology - and Cayman’s lack of audiologists - led to a career change. “I was more interested in what causes the hearing loss, how to restore the hearing and to help people hear well,” she said. Armed with a doctorate from Nova Southeastern University of Florida, Stephenson has set up shop in a former medical center, where she offers a full range of hearing services. “There is a lot more than taking the hearing aid out of the box, putting the batteries in and saying here you go,” she said.
ENGLISH MAN IS NEW SONIC GOLF FRANCHISE OWNER
James Wengraf-Townsend of Surrey, England launches his new Sonic Golf franchise this month, said The Franchise Magazine. Wengraf-Townsend said at first he “didn’t really know what franchise meant,” but when he came across Sonic Golf n the Internet and followed up with The Franchise Magazine, “I realized that it was what I had been searching for.” He was welcomed to the industry by British Franchise Association Chairman Nigel Toplis, who advised him, “When you’re slack don’t sit back - when you’re busy do more!” He added: “Your deafness will change the context of the business only in the way you need to deal with things.”
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LIFE & LEISURE
HYBRID COCHLEAR IMPLANT NOW BEING TESTED
A hybrid cochlear implant that only adds high frequencies is now being tested in clinical trials and could help an estimated 50,000 people if the FDA approves, said Ivanhoe Broadcast News. The hybrid, which doctors implant in the inner ear to stimulate auditory nerves, helps users hear distinct sounds like consonants and is especially useful for patients such as Kathy Barger, 40, who had a hereditary disease that was causing her to go deaf. “It was like, ‘Whoa, I heard that!’” she said. “It’s sort of shocking because you’re used to not hearing, and all of a sudden, it’s ‘Gee, I can understand that.’”
TENNESSEE CHURCH OFFERS GOOD VIBRATIONS
Brentwood (Tenn.) Baptist Deaf Church pastor Brian Sims was inspired to create a one-of-a-kind church for the deaf when a car with a booming stereo pulled alongside him in traffic, said the Associated Press. The vibrations from the pulsating vehicle led him to install more than 30 speakers under the floor of the Nashville-area church, which was built in 2003 with a $1.5 million donation. About 150 people attend services, which are also simulcast to nearly 700 others at 16 locations across the country. Texas architect Cynthia Styles, who is deaf, designed the church to have a clear line of sight and good lighting and music. “If you’re a deaf person,” she said, “I think it makes the service more meaningful to be able to feel the music from the floor.”
PREGNANT DOLPHIN FOUND TO BE DEAF
A pregnant dolphin who was nursed back to health after becoming stranded off Vero Beach, Fla. in November has been found to be deaf and cannot be released into the ocean, said a marine mammal expert last week. According to the Associated Press, “Castaway” was released January 30 but returned to the beach three times. Dolphins use sonar to locate objects and fish for food, said Blair Mase of the National Marine Fisheries Service, and without the ability to hear, Castaway is unreleasable. “Deafness and other central nervous system issues she has would prohibit her from functioning normally,” said Mase. Castaway will be relocated to a permanent care facility.
MARYLAND AGENCY PLANS ‘MAGICAL’ FUNDRAISER
Baltimore, Md. marketing firm Vitamin announced Monday that it has been selected to promote Vibe ‘07, a fundraiser for The Hearing and Speech Agency (HASA). Vitamin will handle all branding, marketing and public relations for the event and has posted a glimpse of the event brand at http://www.hasa.org/vibe. With the theme “A Night of Magic,” the May 11th event at the American Visionary Art Museum will feature WJZ-TV weatherman Bob Turk, a cochlear implant user, along with a mind reader, a magic show, live and silent auctions and a strolling magician. Donations will help HASA “in improving lives through better communication,” said a news release.
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BLIND CAR MECHANIC HIRES DEAF APPRENTICE
Larry Woody, a Cottage Grove, Ore. car mechanic who was blinded in a car accident five years ago, has hired a deaf apprentice, reported the Eugene Register-Guard. Woody, 46, and Otto Shima, 17, have never spoken directly but communicate easily through interpreter J.J. Johansson, who accompanies Shima when he works at the shop twice a week. Shima, a Cottage Grove High School student, said his boss, who barely survived when a truck drove over his tiny car on Interstate 5, inspires him because “he never gives up.” Woody said his goal is "to let people know that Otto's deaf and I'm blind, but we're still humans, so don't treat us any differently.”
DEAF WOMAN IS DAYCARE CENTER’S NEW OWNER
The Norwich (Conn.) Bulletin caught up with Mary Ann Cameron recently as the 49-year-old was about to become the first deaf daycare owner in town. “I’m a little nervous,” said Cameron at the Children’s Learning Garden day care in Putnam. “I know what I’m trying to do will be a big responsibility.” A longtime teacher’s assistant, Cameron attended the American School for the Deaf in West Hartford and is now working toward a degree in child development. The mother of five and grandmother of five more hopes her example will inspire other deaf people. “There’s no excuse for why they can’t succeed even if they can’t hear,” she said.
NEW CHAT PROGRAM TO BE DEMONSTRATED
Online media communications firm WorldVuer said last week that it will demonstrate its pioneering video chat program at all upcoming DeafNation Expo events. WorldVuer’s VUEFON and VUEMAIL products are perfect for deaf and hard-of-hearing people, said President/CEO JR Roedel, and represent the first video technology that allows for multiple party chats “instead of being limited to one-on-one video chats like with videophones.” The company’s booths will feature a game show, “Accept or Not Accept,” and a giveaway of T-shirts and webcams. To learn more, visit www.worldvuer.com.
HOVRS TO HOST MAC WORKSHOPS IN 30 CITIES
Hands On Video Relay Service (HOVRS) said this week that it will host workshops in 30 cities this year focusing on Macintosh computers. The Mac OS X Secrets workshops are designed for Macintosh owners who want to learn more about their computers, computer buyers who are researching their next purchase, and consumers who want to use video relay service on a Mac computer. The workshops will be presented by Chad Taylor, HOVRS’s Mac Business Unit Manager and co-founder of filmmaker Mosdeux. Attendees will receive raffle tickets to win free Macs and Apple gift certificates. To learn more, visit www.hovrs.com/mac.
COCHLEAR CHIEF FORESEES CONTINUED GROWTH
Australian cochlear implant leader Cochlear is poised to grow at a rate of at least 20 percent for at least the next five years, analysts believe. CEO Chris Roberts backed up the optimistic view with a recent purchase of $7 million in stock to go with the 400,000 shares, worth over $200 million, that he already owns. Cochlear has grown at an annual rate of 22 percent for the last 10 years, said The Australian, but Roberts says there is still a “huge unmet clinical need out there” and cites China and India as the two largest untapped markets. “We can help so many people,” he said, “and it’s a tragedy that we’re not.”
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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
IN D.C., TV FILM FESTIVAL FOLLOWS ‘DEAF EYES’
Tonight marks the world premiere of Through Deaf Eyes, the PBS documentary that explores nearly 200 years of deaf life in America. Viewers in the Washington, D.C. area will enjoy a special treat after the show - a film festival of work by deaf filmmakers and media artists. The Deaf Cinema Showcase, hosted by Gallaudet University, WETA-TV 26 and the Council for International Non-Theatrical Events (CINE), is designed to raise awareness, promote dialogue between deaf and hearing filmmakers and audiences, and support emerging filmmakers. Films were chosen in a national competition and judged for content, creativity and execution. The program “gives an important and vibrant sector of the filmmaking community the exposure it deserves,” said CINE President Mat Tombers.
THEATER NAME CHANGE HONORS GILBERT EASTMAN
Gallaudet University announced last week that it will honor the memory of Gilbert C. Eastman, a 1957 alumnus, by renaming the Elstad Auditorium’s Black Box Theatre the Gilbert C. Eastman Studio Theatre. Eastman, a professor in Gallaudet’s Theatre Arts Department from 1957 to 1992, died December 2 at age 72. In addition to his Emmy Award-winning role as host of Gallaudet’s Deaf Mosaic TV show, Eastman was internationally known as an educator, writer, actor, stage manager and director of more than 50 plays. An April 6 ceremony to rename the theater will be preceded by a memorial service and followed by a revival of Eastman’s play, Sign Me Alice, which premiered on the same date in 1973.
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A keith wann asl comedy dvd 'watching two worlds collide' will make any asl student happy! Deaf parents with hearing children will want this dvd to know the things codas try to get away with and often do. 'Watching two worlds' is a 70-minute comedy dvd performed in asl with voice over. $25.00. Pg-13. About a coda growing up in both the deaf and hearing world. Order forms on www.keithwann.com. Or email firstname.lastname@example.org for bookings and performing requests.
NEW GROUP CANCELS FIRST BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT
The USA Deaf Basketball Organization has canceled its first national tournament, which it planned to host this weekend at the University of California, Riverside. The USADBO said in a website announcement that “undue influences from other sources” led some teams to back out at the last minute. Teams were fed rumors, said the announcement, and threatened with suspension if they played in the USADBO tournament. The new organization has decided, instead, to look ahead to Atlantic City in 2008 for its first “March Madness” National Deaf Basketball Tournament, which promises to be “well-planned and well-organized.”
** TWO NEW BOOKS BY TOM WILLARD **
-- A Sorry Stick of a Man, Indeed
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For more information, please visit www.canalstreetpress.com
PAUL SETZER, 63, LONGTIME GALLAUDET ART PROFESSOR
Paul M. Setzer II, a longtime professor of art at Gallaudet University, died Friday, March 16 at Frederick (Md.) Memorial Hospital. He was 63. Mr. Setzer was a California School for the Deaf-Riverside graduate who earned a bachelor’s in art from Gallaudet and an MFA in visual communications from George Washington University in Washington, D.C., said the Frederick News-Post. After working as an artist and illustrator in Los Angeles and Silver Spring, Md., Mr. Setzer worked for the U.S. Department of Justice before joining the Gallaudet faculty 26 years ago. Known for his detailed sign-language illustrations for such publishers as Gallaudet University Press and DawnSignPress, he was also a 1975 U.S. Olympian speed skater in the World Games for the Deaf. Memorial donations will help the Middletown Valley Athletic Association (P.O. Box 432, Middletown, MD 21769) start a fund for interpreting services.
WAYNE MCINTIRE, 95, DEVELOPED CSUN’S DEAF PROGRAM
Wayne McIntire, who developed the National Leadership Training Program on the campus of what is now the California State University at Northridge died February 18 at a nursing home in Greer, S.C. at the age of 95. According to the Los Angeles Times, Mr. McIntire worked with education professor Ray Jones to create a curriculum and secure grants to launch the leadership program in 1962. As the program grew and attracted deaf students, a program of support services was created that is now known as the National Center on Deafness. Roslyn Rosen, NCOD director, said Mr. McIntire’s legacy “continues through the viable programs in place today at CSUN.” Mr. McIntire was survived by his wife, Edith, who ran a program for deaf students in Los Angeles in the 1970s, but she died six days later at the same nursing home.
You can advertise your job openings here for just $20 a week (up to 100 words, 10 cents each add'l word) and reach nearly 6,500 Deafweekly subscribers. Our website gets an additional 4,000+ page views each week. Start spreading the news! To place your ad, send the announcement to email@example.com.
Position Available Immediately
K-12 Physical Education Teacher
Florida certification in PE or Deaf Education
Proficient in American Sign Language
Please send cover letter, resume, 3 letters of reference, and official transcript to
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Mount Dora, FL 32757
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The Charter School at National Deaf Academy is a public charter school serving the school-ages population on National Deaf Academy, a psychiatric residential treatment center.
JOB OPPORTUNITIES AT GLAD
GLAD is an Affirmative Action Employer with equal opportunity for men, women and people with disabilities. For more information on the following positions, please go to: www.gladinc.org. The status of all positions is: Regular, Full-time, Non-Exempt, Full Fringe Benefits unless otherwise noted. All positions are open until filled.
- Regional Director
- Mexican Sign Language Interpreter - Riverside
- Job Developer/Interpreter - Crenshaw and Pacoima
- Community Advocate - Los Angeles
- Placement Coordinator - Crenshaw
- Placement Coordinator (Temporary) - Norwalk
- Hard of Hearing Specialist (Temporary) -- Los Angeles and Riverside
- Community Advocate (Temporary) - Riverside
- Community Advocate - Riverside
If interested for any of these positions then please submit resume and application to:
Human Resources Specialist
Greater Los Angeles Agency on Deafness, Inc.
2222 Laverna Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90041
V/TDD: (323) 550-4207
Fax #: (323)550-4204
Hamilton Relay, Inc. currently has a full-time position open for “Outreach Coordinator” for the state of Kansas.
Applications and Job Descriptions may be picked up from and returned to Cindy Blase in Human Resource Department by April 6, 2007. (Any questions concerning the opening can be directed to Cindy/Human Resource Department.)
We are an equal opportunity employer. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, age, national origin or disability.
Position summary: Position is responsible for Outreach, marketing, and gathering information which will help improve the quality of the relay service and the number of customers served by Hamilton. Individual will be required to travel.
Applicants with the ability to communicate through the use of American Sign Language are preferred. An Associate or Bachelor's Degree or comparable work experience along with a minimum of three years public relations experience is preferred. Strong written, analytical and interpersonal skills as well as a driver's license and ability to travel alone are required. Direct work experience with a Telecommunications Relay Service is also preferred. Deaf and hard of hearing individuals are encouraged to apply.
Interested individuals may send all inquiries and/or resumes to www.hamilton.net/employment.html to the attention of Cindy Blase in Human Resource Department by April 6, 2007.
We are an equal opportunity employer. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, age, national origin or disability.
Hamilton Relay, Inc. is a division of Hamilton Telecommunications based in Aurora, NE. Hamilton offers a competitive wage. Contact our HR Dept. at: 800.821.1831 or at: www.hamilton.net/employment.html
Deaf Counseling, Advocacy & Referral Agency - San Leandro
Deaf Counseling, Advocacy and Referral Agency (DCARA) has a full-time (40 hours/week) exempt Executive Assistant position available. The Executive Assistant will work out of the headquarters office in San Leandro, CA and provides clerical and administrative support and reports to the Chief Executive Officer. DCARA offers extremely competitive benefits such as a 4 day work-week schedule, 12 days of holiday leave plus one week paid winter holiday and full medical, dental, vision and life insurances. For more details, see www.dcara.org.
Director of Client Support
Services Position Announcement
Deaf Counseling, Advocacy and Referral Agency - San Leandro, CA
This position directs and supervises all aspects of outreach and specialized services in San Leandro, San Jose, Fremont, Eureka, and Santa Cruz. Represents agency in educational, advocacy, and social service contexts; coordinates program development and evaluation; monitors department budget; and performs direct services to clients. DCARA offers extremely competitive benefits such as 4-day work week schedule (40 hours), 12 days of holiday leave plus one week paid winter holiday, and full medical, dental, vision and life insurances. For more details, see www.dcara.org.
Client Support Specialist,
Deaf Counseling, Advocacy and Referral Agency - Fremont, CA
The Client Support Specialist will work with deaf, hard of hearing, deafened individuals and deaf senior citizens and provide services including peer counseling, advocacy, and community education on health issues, senior citizen issues, entitlement benefits and daily living issues. DCARA offers extremely competitive benefits such as 4-day work week schedule (40 hours), 12 days of holiday leave plus one week paid winter holiday, and full medical, dental, vision and life insurances. For more details, see www.dcara.org.
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