August 2, 2006
Vol. 2 No. 39
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.
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JULY 31, 2006 - A DAY TO BEGIN CELEBRATING!
Beginning July 31, 2006, you CAN use your videophone to reach any VRS provider of your choice! Do you have a VP-100? Try IP-VRS, and experience the benefits.
Set tv.ipvrs.com in your Speed Dial List and make a call. And if you really like IP-VRS, make it your first choice VRS provider all the time!
Need help adding tv.ipvrs.com to your VP-100 or DLink? Click here to view the video instructions. Or, visit our web site at www.ip-vrs.com for more information.
IP-VRS - We’re working
PARENTS OF DEAF AND BLIND BOY SUE SCHOOL DISTRICT
The Red Lion Area School District in Pennsylvania has been sued by the parents of a deaf and blind 9-year-old boy, who say the district has failed to provide their son with an appropriate education. According to The York Daily Record, an administrative hearing officer ruled in October that the boy should be placed in a local school with an appropriate program. The lawsuit claims, however, that the district has “systematically refused to comply with orders from every level of the state administrative system.” The child, identified only as Derrick F., attended school for only seven partial days in April and became self-abusive and suffered serious injuries out of frustration over his inability to communicate with untrained staff. The parents want a jury trial and are seeking compensatory and punitive damages, attorneys’ fees and other relief.
NEW CENTER SERVES 70 CLIENTS IN FIRST MONTH
About 70 people have used the services of North Carolina for Deaf and Hard of Hearing, a new center in Winston-Salem that opened last month. The center was formed in response to the closing of the Forsyth Center for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, said the Winston-Salem Journal, and is expected to serve an estimated 40,000 people in Forsyth and surrounding counties. The 31-year old Forsyth Center closed July 1 after the United Way decided to give its $120,000 grant to another agency. Lauren Azevedo, president of the new center, said one of the most popular services has been the use of free video telephones. The center also provides free bus passes, offers discounts on hearing aids and helps deaf clients with individual problems - including one man who couldn’t understand the letters he received from a collection agency.
ADVOCATES SEEK FCC ACTION ON VIDEOPHONE NUMBERS
Several consumer groups are asking the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to make videophones more equal to regular phones. Their requests include providing a 10-digit phone number for videophones with an area code that matches where the user lives, and a central telephone number database, administered by a neutral third party, that would include all videophone numbers. “The technology is already available,” said a statement, “and we want it now.” To view a video clip, go to www.nad.org/fccnumberaction. To add your comments, go to http://gullfoss2.fcc.gov/ecfs/Upload/ and click on “Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS) - Docket 03-123.”
CAPTIONED TELEPHONE CENTER COULD OPEN IN MILWAUKEE
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported this week that a proposed captioned-telephone center could bring 800 new jobs to downtown Milwaukee. CapTel Inc., a division of Ultratec Inc., has not made a final decision about expanding its operations from its Madison headquarters, but “all signs are pointing” to an expansion into Milwaukee, said Mayor Tom Barrett. “We would love to have them here.” The city would provide a $250,000 loan that would be forgiven if the company meets certain job-creation goals, from 200 positions in 2007 up to 600 positions in 2011. Most of the jobs would be for operators, or communications assistants, who transcribe spoken language into written text that hearing-impaired callers can read on their captioned telephones. More information on captioned telephone can be found at www.captionedtelephone.com.
Did you know that beginning July
1st, you will have the flexibility of using most VRS providers from your VP?
It’s time to Switch to Sprint!
§ Faster connections!
§ Experienced Video Interpreters
§ Excellent Spanish and VCO options
How can you connect to SprintVRS from your VP?
1. Click on DIAL
2. Click on SPEED DIAL
3. Click on ADD
4. For NAME enter “1 SprintVRS” (for faster access the next time you place a call)
5. Select IP ADDRESS
6. Enter “SprintVRS.tv” (To enter text, bring up the keyboard on your screen by pressing ENTER on your remote)
7. Click OK
§ Other options: “Spanish.Sprintvrs.tv” and “Sprintvrsvco.tv” (follow the same steps listed above.)
The next time you need to make a SprintVRS call, click on 1 SprintVRS from your Speed Dial list. Need more options, visit www.sprintvrs.com.
TEXAS CANDIDATE ADDS SIGN LANGUAGE TO WEBSITE
A Texas Democrat running for Probate Court Judge in San Antonio has unveiled what she said is the first campaign website in the United States to offer sign language for deaf visitors (www.voteforbarbie.com). Barbara Scharf-Zeldes added the service to her website after noting that many people who grew up with hearing impairments rely on sign language and read at only a second- or third-grade level, reported the San Antonio Express-News. The written content of three web pages were translated into American Sign Language by Deaf Link of San Antonio. “It really is a different world,” said Scharf-Zeldes. “To think that we can open that world a little bit through technology is amazing to me.”
NAD LAWYER LEAVES TO WORK FOR VRS COMPANY
Kelby Brick has left his position as Director for Law and Advocacy with the National Association of the Deaf to become Director of Legal & Regulatory Affairs for Hands On Video Relay Service. Brick, a graduate of Gallaudet University and Temple University Law School, has been active in numerous advocacy organizations and has run his own law practice focusing on civil rights, criminal law, estate planning and lobbying. He is also the co-author of “Legal Rights: The Guide for Deaf and Hard of Hearing People.” Brick, who is married with two sons, will remain in the Washington, D.C. area and be the “point person on federal matters” for the Rocklin, Calif. company, said an HOVRS news release.
PARENT CRITICIZES SCHOOL’S DECISION TO END ASL PROGRAM
An opinion article in the Star-Gazette of Elmira, N.Y. finds fault with a local school’s decision to discontinue its American Sign Language program. It was written by Rebecca Grier, the parent of a student who had taken ASL for three years at Broadway Middle School. According to Grier, eighth-grade students were told just before spring break that they must right then and there pick another language, French or Spanish, because ASL would no longer be offered. Grier refutes several points made in a fact sheet sent home with the ASL students. Among them: ASL had the lowest enrollment (Grier said there were 137 ASL students and 125 taking French) and teachers are hard to find (they are not looking in the right places, she said). She urged the school district to reinstate ASL so students can “continue what they started and not be Children Left Behind.”
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Sorenson IP Relay™
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SPECIAL DEALS ON ALARM CLOCKS
Choose from two different alarm clocks on sale during July. The Sonic Alert Travel & Bedside Clock features a large easy to read display and powerful 12-volt shaker. Regularly $34.95, this month it’s only $27.95! The SBP-100 Sonic Shaker portable clock includes travel case, pillow clasp and one-year warranty. Retail price is $29.95 but it’s only $24.95 this month! Call 1-800-233-9130 (V/TTY) or visit us online at http://www.weitbrecht.com. To receive a copy of our catalog, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
WCI. Providing Solutions for People with Hearing Loss.
ROUND-THE-WORLD FLIGHT SET TO END THIS MONTH
Johan Hammarström, a Swedish man who is attempting to become the first hearing-impaired pilot to fly around the world in a light aircraft, is set to wrap up his journey by August 31 in Stockholm, Sweden. A report last month in Aero-News Network said Hammarström and two hearing crew members have already logged 29,000 miles on the 40,000-mile, 40-country world tour that began March 15. The team has engaged in numerous activities along the way, with Hammarström speaking at organizations and schools for the deaf and hard of hearing. Hammarström, 29, whose father is an experienced pilot with his own plane, had to battle civil aviation authorities for years to complete his pilot training. “I believe that I could contribute to changing attitudes toward hearing impairment,” he said. To learn more, visit www.worldflightforhearing.com.
AUSTRALIAN COUPLE AND CHILDREN ESCAPE HOUSE FIRE
A deaf couple and their two children in Victoria, Australia lost everything but their lives after escaping a house fire last Thursday that police said was deliberately set by an arsonist. Keith Cripps told the Geelong Advertiser that he and his family could have died in the attack if the smell of smoke had not woken him. He criticized the Department of Housing for not fitting the home with a fire alarm with flashing lights for the deaf. “I’m still fuming,” he said. “What if I didn’t wake up?” Cripps praised his children, Kalvin, 7, and Ashley, 5, for their bravery in escaping the 3:30 a.m. fire, and said his wife, Van, who is seven months pregnant, almost fell from a backyard fence in the escape. It was the second blow for the family, which had its car stolen and set on fire two weeks earlier. It was also the 14th recent arson attack in the area.
AUSTRALIAN FAMILY WINS COURT BATTLE FOR INTERPRETERS
The parents of an 8-year-old deaf girl in Australia have won a court battle to force Education Queensland to provide classroom assistance from a sign-language interpreter, reported The Courier Mail. Gail Smith and Jeff Hurst of Sunshine Coast launched their battle for assistance in 2004 and lost an earlier court case, forcing them to move to Perth to access better services. Last week, however, three judges ruled in favor of the family, meaning that Education Queensland would have to provide an Auslan (Australian Sign Language) interpreter for their daughter, Tiahna, if the family returns. The family might also seek financial compensation, said anti-discrimination expert Jane Phillips, who assisted with the case.
Bullying Hurts! Stop it!
See Dr. Hodgdon's website for workshop information www.stopdeafbullying.com
JAMAICA LAUNCHES $100,000 HIV EDUCATION PROGRAM
Jamaica is launching a one-year program to educate deaf women about HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases. The $100,000 (US) program is being funded by the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), said the Jamaica Information Service. The program, announced last week at a press conference in Kingston, will be coordinated by the Jamaica Council for Persons with Disabilities. UNAIDS Country Coordinator Miriam Maluwa said the assumptions that disabled people are not sexually active have impeded progress in the prevention of HIV/AIDS infections among the disabled. The new program will include career training in such skills as flower arrangement and cooking, which is expected to lead to financial independence and help protect deaf women from sexual abuse and violence.
KIDS FROM 20 COUNTRIES GATHER FOR FIRST WFD CAMP
Forty deaf children from 20 countries are gathered this week with their adult leaders for the first World Federation of the Deaf (WFD) Camp for Deaf Children. The one-week camp began Saturday at the Deaf Education and Course Center of Castberggard in Vejle, Denmark. The camp was organized by the Danish Deaf Youth Association in collaboration with the WFD’s Youth Section. A website with photos and news from the camp can be found at www.ddu.nu/wfdcc2006/news.
NIGERIAN DEAF HOST SEMINAR ON STREET BEGGING
Deaf activists in Nigeria held a two-day seminar on street begging last week and launched a N5 million ($37,800 US) Appeal Fund to aid the deaf. Organizers were disappointed, however, that none of the invited dignitaries showed up for the event, despite waiting two hours for their arrival. The seminar, with a theme, “Giving the deaf a new lease of life,” focused on the high rate of street begging by the deaf in Nigeria, said The Tide in Port Harcourt. Lawrence Idemudia of the Abuja Association of the Deaf said young boys and girls were being lured away from school into the trade while ringleaders fight to recruit them. Street begging erodes the respect of working deaf men and women in the country, said Idemudia, but unemployment remains the biggest problem. Even deaf people who have earned master’s degrees find it hard to secure jobs, he said.
CANADIAN YOUTH LAUNCHES WINDOW WASHING COMPANY
The Dundas Star in Ontario, Canada did a story last week on Taylor Walker, a 17-year-old deaf Dundas resident who recently started his own window washing business. Taylor’s company was funded through a special Ontario government entrepreneur program that provides up to $1,500 ($1,330 US) for start-up costs and another $1,500 in the fall upon returning to school. He decided on window washing “because it is simple and quick to do for a student summer company,” he said. His original costs for sponges and towels were very low, but the grant enabled him to buy a telescopic water-fed pole to make the work go faster. Now the challenge is to find customers. “Most people are quick to dismiss me at the door,” he said, “despite the fact that I am fully insured and professional about my work.” His company’s website can be seen at www.walkerwindows.biz.
New Sonic Alert Clocks Coming to Harris Communications
Available soon! The Analog Clock and the Sweetheart Alarm Clock are two new unique clocks from Sonic Alert. The Analog Clock has a cool blue backlight and fast and easy alarm setting. The Sweetheart Alarm Clock comes in hot pink and features a multi-colored display. Both clocks have alarm lights and a powerful bed shaker. Clocks will be available by August 15th. For more information, go to http://www.harriscomm.com/link/?www.harriscomm.com?sr=dw or contact us at mailto:email@example.com.
SEAPORT DEAF FESTIVAL
on Sunday, August 13, 2006
10 AM - 6 PM = FREE ADMISSION
at SOUTH STREET SEAPORT
Contact ALLEPRE@aol.com and
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Place Hamilton relay calls with your Blackberry, Treo and Sidekick or with ANY device that runs AIM® or has a Wireless Access Protocol (WAP) browser!
How? With AIM®, send an instant message to HipRelay.
With a WAP browser, go to http://www.hamiltonrelay.com/.
Last week’s Deafweekly reported on a deaf woman who lost two fingers in an accident at a meat processing plant. We mistakenly said the incident occurred in Virginia. Actually, it was in Illinois. The confusion resulted from the fact that the woman, Kimberly Wallis, is from Virginia, Ill.
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A SUMMER SIZZLER!
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Non-Profit mental health agency in Edgewater, MD has positions available in Deaf Program. Applicants must be fluent in American Sign Language. Minimum qualifications are a high school diploma or equivalent, AA or BA/BS degree with coursework and/or experience in psychology or human services preferred. Must have valid drivers license.
Program Manager -- Full Time, Duties include: supervise direct care staff, provide and coordinate psychiatric rehab for clients, coordinate financial matters for clients, & ensure that residences are in compliance with regulations.
Interpreter/Mental Health Specialist -- Full Time, 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. Mon-Thurs as Interpreter, other hours as needed for Mental Health Specialist (will include weekends). Interpreter must be able to interpret a variety of situations and be fluent in spoken English. Specialist duties include; coordination of doctor appts., transport clients to appts., medication monitoring, provide daily living skills & job support, and apply crisis intervention.
Rehabilitation Specialist -- Part Time, Sat/Sun; Responsibilities include providing daily living skills support, medication monitoring, transporting clients to appointments, and applying crisis intervention when needed.
Send resume and cover letter to: Arundel Lodge, 2600 Solomons Island Road, Edgewater, MD 21037, fax (410) 841-6045, email: Lmurphy@arundellodge.org.
OPPORTUNITIES AT FEGS
FEGS is one of the largest health and human services organizations in the country with a budget in excess of $230 million and 3,500+ employees.
Excellent opportunity to become vital member of a multidisciplinary team, strongly rooted in the Deaf community. Seeking experienced professionals, fluent in ASL, to work with adult disabled, Deaf population.
CLINICAL SOCIAL WORKER/PSYCHOLOGIST
Provide individual, group and family counseling services to adult Deaf clients of the New York Society for the Deaf outpatient mental health clinic. Requires MSW, LMHC or Ph.D.and related experience.
SIGN LANGUAGE INTERPRETER
Facilitate communication between Deaf, chronically mentally ill clients and staff of the Continuing Day Treatment Program. Interpreter services are required in individual and group counseling sessions, meetings, and other program activities as needed. Must have flexibility in working with client’s personal signing styles.
Bachelors' degree (or equivalent combination of education and experience) is required. Experience working in a health care or treatment setting is a plus. Other degrees and certifications will be considered.
Positions are located in lower Manhattan (West Village area) and are accessible by public transportation. Competitive salary and generous benefits.
Send resume to our HR Consultants: HR Dynamics, Inc. (DEPT. EK/ASL), 345 Hudson Street, 4th Floor, New York, NY 10014. E-mail: email@example.com. EOE
Visit our website: www.fegs.org
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.
LIFESIGNS Director - Los Angeles
Community Advocate - Los Angeles
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
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