September 17, 2008
Vol. 4, 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 2008 and any unauthorized use, including reprinting of news, is prohibited. Please support our advertisers; they make it possible for you to receive Deafweekly.
BANK FAILURE ERASES $170,000 RAISED FOR CONFERENCE
The Las Vegas group planning next year's 10th biennial Deaf Seniors of America convention lost $170,000 when Silver State Bank collapsed last week. The Las Vegas County Association of the Deaf spent 3-1/2 years raising the money and had four certificates of deposit worth $250,000 plus $20,000 in interest, said the Las Vegas Sun, but the account is now worth only $100,000 because that is the maximum amount of insurance provided by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Co-chairman Bill Moran said there are no plans to cancel the 10-day event, which is expected to attract 3,000 attendees, but planners may need to borrow money to fulfill their contract with the host hotel.
BILL TO TIGHTEN ADA PASSES IN SENATE
A bill to expand the Americans with Disabilities Act was approved last Thursday in the U.S. Senate, reported The New York Times. The bill, written in response to Supreme Court rulings that weakened the ADA in recent years, passed in the House in June by a 402-17 vote and will be sent to the White House for President Bush's signature after a few minor differences are resolved. (Bush's father signed the original ADA law 18 years ago.) Andrew Imparato, president of the American Association of People with Disabilities, called the measure "the most important piece of legislation since the enactment of the ADA in 1990."
NEVADA'S FIRST SCHOOL FOR THE DEAF OPENS
Nevada's first school for the deaf opened September 3 in two rented classrooms in a Las Vegas preschool. The Las Vegas Charter School of the Deaf resulted from six years of work by deaf activists, said the Review-Journal, some of whom "couldn't believe that Nevada was without a deaf school when they moved here." The new charter school will receive state money based on enrollment and does not charge tuition because it is a public school. Nine of the 13 board members are deaf, and the other four have deaf family members. Their goal is to recruit 25 students for grades K-3 and add more grades as the school grows.
IN MINNESOTA, A NEW DEAF STUDIES MINOR IS BORN
Student activists at the University of Minnesota Duluth were credited with inspiring the school to add a new deaf studies minor this fall. Last year, responding to a long waiting list for American Sign Language classes, a student group called Access for All organized a forum and invited students, administrators, community members and legislators, said the Duluth News Tribune. "The chancellor heard the message and said: 'We're going to fund this,'" said Paul Deputy, a UMD dean. Since winning approval for the new minor, the school has hired two instructors, one deaf and one hearing, and seen enrollment in ASL classes nearly double. "It's a really big accomplishment," said sophomore Kristy Seaver.
CALIFORNIANS TO CELEBRATE ASL AT STATE CAPITOL
Deaf Californians plan to gather at the State Capitol building in Sacramento next Friday, September 26, to celebrate American Sign Language. The event will "honor our basic human right to express and receive communication in a language that allows us 100% access to the world around us!" said event coordinator Sheri A. Farinha in a news release. The "Deaf All Fun Celebration" will feature speakers from the state Senate and Assembly and leaders of the deaf community, with performances by Ella Mae Lentz, Vikee Waltrip and others. Hundreds of participants are expected, and cad1906.org is the site for more information.
UTAH SCHOOLS SEEK PERMANENT HOME
The Utah Schools for the Deaf and the Blind gained a new ally in a 10-year quest to obtain state funding for a permanent building last Friday when the state Board of Education pledged its support. According to The Salt Lake Tribune, the 2,100-student school hopes to purchase and retrofit the elementary school it has leased for six years from the Granite School District. A request last year for $14.9 million was shot down by lawmakers. "If the Legislature refuses what we are proposing," said USDB Superintendent Timothy W. Smith, "to be honest, I don't know what we're going to do."
PUBLIC TV STATION OFFERS ELECTION INSIGHT
A public TV station in Rochester, N.Y. is taking steps to include deaf people in this year's election. WXXI is hosting a forum for the deaf community next Monday, the start of National Deaf Awareness Week, and inviting candidates from four U.S. Congressional districts to participate. On the same day, WXXI will launch an accessible election website for deaf and hard-of-hearing citizens, said a news release from NTID, a partner in the project. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting awarded WXXI one of five grants (out of 59 applicants) from a fund that supports new media projects targeting specific audiences.
EX-NTID ART PROFESSOR GETS 11 YEARS ON SEX CHARGES
Michael L. Krembel, a former graphic arts professor at Rochester Institute of Technology's National Technical Institute for the Deaf, was sentenced to 11 years in prison August 28 for using the Internet to entice a teenage boy into having sex with him. According to the Democrat and Chronicle, Krembel, 64, was sent to federal prison and will be supervised by federal probation officers for 15 years after his release. U.S. District Judge Charles J. Siragusa was unmoved by letters of support from friends and colleagues at NTID, where his lawyer said he had a "previously spotless record" over 35 years. "You knew what you were doing, and you chose to do it," Siragusa told Krembel.
FORMER TEACHER PLEADS GUILTY TO CHILD MOLESTING
Former California School for the Deaf Riverside teacher Daniel Ray Metroka was sentenced July 11 to 20 years in prison after pleading guilty to molesting two girls, said The Press-Enterprise. Metroka has been jailed since he was arrested on June 30, 2007, the day he and his wife were babysitting the girls, ages 5 and 7. Metroka, 52, taught at the school since 1997 and was a volunteer interpreter at a Riverside Catholic church. "This is a man who has led a very good life," said defense attorney Stephen Harmon. "But on one evening he made a terrible mistake."
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BRITISH LAD SURVIVES BEING SWEPT TO SEA
A 10-year-old deaf boy from Hartlepool, England was "plucked from the sea" in a dramatic rescue reported July 24 by the Evening Gazette. Josh Griffin was washed away from a pier and spent about 15 minutes struggling to stay afloat before being spotted by a passerby. Two mysterious rescuers were hailed as heros for their attempts to pull the boy to safety. Josh, who lives with his grandmother, was given oxygen at a lifeboat station and taken to a hospital as a precaution.
MAN WHO TESTED SIRENS FOR 35 YEARS WINS COURT CASE
A British police car mechanic who became deaf after testing emergency sirens for 35 years was awarded $28,800 and about $90,000 in court costs in a lawsuit against his former employer. Kevin Twigg, 64, worked in garages from 1964 to 1999 and was required to leave sirens blaring for several minutes whenever a vehicle came in for service, said the Telegraph. He began suffering from tinnitus upon retirement and developed a severe hearing loss. Twigg said he missed a 1990 memo urging workers to use ear protection and plans to use his winnings to "buy a new pair of hearing aids which fit inside my ears rather than outside."
CAFETERIA CEILING COMES CRASHING DOWN
The ceiling in a Malaysian school for the deaf cafeteria came crashing down July 17 just three minutes after students had finished their meals and returned to class. It was the second such incident at the School for the Deaf in SS5 Kelana Jaya in two years, reported The Star, and headmistress Saadiah Ahmad said she's contacted "numerous parties, including the Selangor mentri besar's office," to no avail. Finally, the school sought help from Loh Seng Kok, a former Kelana Jaya MP. Loh promised to get Education Ministry officers to take a look at the ceiling and "hopefully do something about it."
OFFICIALS BEND RULE TO AID IMPLANTED GIRL, 2
New Zealand's Ministry of Health bent a rule this week so that a 2-year-old girl can receive free follow-up care for her cochlear implant. Rose Murfitt was born in the US and had the operation before moving to New Zealand with her Kiwi dad and American mom, said 3 News NZ, but Health Ministry rules say Kiwi kids who have the procedure in other countries are not entitled to follow-up care in New Zealand. On Monday, the Ministry "changed its tune -- but just for Rose." Advocates for another dozen deaf children "who are not as lucky" said the decision was disappointing.
SOUTH AFRICAN DEAF SEEK SIGN LANGUAGE RECOGNITION
Deaf people in Durban, the third-largest city in South Africa, marched to the premier's office last week and delivered a memorandum asking for sign language to be recognized as the country's 12th official language. Lucky Sifiso Gabela, special adviser to the premier, received the memorandum and addressed the crowd, said Independent Online, acknowledging the challenges facing the nation's deaf citizens. Jace Nair, CEO of the KwaZulu-Natal Blind and Deaf Society, said Gabela promised to deliver the memo to the premier and set up a meeting with a deaf community representative by the end of the month.
DEAF FOUND TO ADAPT SPEECH EVEN WHEN UNHEARD
David Ostry and Sazzad Nasir at McGill University in Montreal are trying to find out why many deaf people can still speak coherently years after losing their hearing. They've enlisted five deaf adults with cochlear implants (turned off during the tests) and built a device that pulls their lower jaw forward enough to affect their speech. Researchers wanted to know if they would adapt their speech to the sudden deformation, and eventually they did, at the same pace as a group with normal hearing. Speech involves what you hear and what you feel in your vocal tract, said Ostry (in a MedGuru report titled "Ray of Hope for the Deaf"), and deaf people "still have the other one."
WARNING FROM NORWAY'S UTDANNINGSFORBUNDET
With noisy kindergartens causing stress, headaches, tinnitus, learning difficulties and hearing loss for one in six Norway children, the national association for the hard of hearing (HLF) has teamed up with teacher's union Utdanningsforbundet on a nationwide campaign to reduce noise in children's daycare centers, reported the daily newspaper Dagbladet via Aftenposten. A 2005 government report showed the problem is even worse for teachers, with 75 percent of kindergarten workers exposed to harmful noise levels and one in four suffering permanent hearing loss.
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LIFE & LEISURE
ELDERLY DEAF MORE LIABLE TO BE MISDIAGNOSED
Elderly deaf people scored an average of 3 to 5 percent lower on an exam to detect early signs of dementia and Alzheimer's disease, said Macon (Ga.) State College researcher David Feldman at the 2008 Florida Conference on Aging conference last month. A language translation issue is the cause, reported Ivanhoe's Medical Breakthroughs, and it can lead to patients being misdiagnosed. Feldman and his team studied the Mini Mental Status Exam and found that the scores of deaf patients were brought down by questions with complex language. "One of the problems is that when an older deaf adult is being tested by somebody," said Feldman, "they're automatically going to look like they're demented even though they're not."
FOOD SAFETY VIDEOS OFFERED IN ASL
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has begun offering food safety education videos online with captioning and American Sign Language interpretation. The video-casts, dubbed SignFSIS (for Food Safety and Inspection Service), feature student volunteers from Gallaudet University and offer information on foodborne illness and the dangers of improper handling and undercooking of food. Consumers can choose to receive information in written English or ASL and can watch a video featuring Heather Whitestone McCallum, Miss America 1995. To access the clips, go to www.fsis.usda.gov/news_&_events/SignFSIS/index.asp.
METLIFE FOUNDATION AWARDS MINNESOTA VOLUNTEER
Barbara Schmidt of Coon Rapids, Minn. has been awarded a 2008 Older Volunteers Enrich America Award from the Metlife Foundation. The silver trophy in the Team Spirit category honors Schmidt for her work with the Deaf Hospice Education and Volunteer Project, said ABC Newspapers. Schmidt, who was deafened in a fall at age two, graduated in 1955 from the Deaf School in Faribault and spent a year at Gallaudet before marrying her "childhood sweetheart" and raising three children. When her husband died in 1997, Schmidt, 73, dedicated herself "100 percent into volunteering." Asked how she finds time for hobbies on top of her volunteer work, she replies, "No TV! That's how you do that."
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AT NAD, THE Z SAYS HI; 60 PERCENT SAY BUY
CSDVRS introduced its new line of videophones at the National Association of the Deaf conference in New Orleans and reported getting orders from more than 60 percent of the conference's 1,500 participants. "We knew The Z would be popular," said CSDVRS's Chris Wagner in a news release, "but even this exceeded our expectations.." The Z, in development for a year, offers three versions: a free software-based videophone, a low-cost videophone said to be "perfect for everyone," and a high-performance videophone for business use. "We had over 10 people working all day just to keep up with the customers," said sales veep Tim Rarus, and CEO Sean Belanger added, "What a week!"
VIABLE PRESIDENT NAMED ONE OF TOP 25 CEO'S
Maryland's John T.C. Yeh was one of "25 CEOs You Need to Know" in an annual list published by The Gazette of Politics and Business, a Washington Post-owned weekly publication. Yeh, the only deaf executive chosen and one of eight honorees to appear on the Gazette's cover, is president and founder of Viable, a developer of videophones and provider of video relay services that has grown from six employees in Rockville in May 2006 to its present-day 150 workers and four locations. Yeh and several Viable employees will attend an awards luncheon tomorrow in Bethesda, said a Viable news release, after which the list will be posted at www.gazette.net/business.
NEW JERSEY CALL CENTER TO CLOSE
A Vineland, N..J. call center operated by CSD (Communication Service for the Deaf) of Sioux Falls, S.D. and Sprint is closing by the end of the year. Plans to shutter the Landis Avenue facility were announced last Friday by Sen. Jeff Van Drew and Assemblymen Nelson Albano and Matt Milam, said The Daily Journal. Van Drew helped bring the call center and its 25 jobs to Vineland three years ago, but call center usage has decreased 20 percent and Sprint is regionalizing its call centers. "We asked them to take another look at this, but I can't promise anything," said Van Drew. "It's a corporate decision."
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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
MTV DOES DOCUMENTARY, 'TRUE LIFE: I'M DEAF'
MTV did an episode of its long-running True Life documentary series earlier this year titled, True Life: I'm Deaf (click here for full episode). Cameras followed Christopher, 16, of Vernon, N.J., as he underwent a cochlear implant operation, and Amanda, 21, from Towson (Md.) University, who worried that her deafness would get in the way of her NFL cheerleading try-out. New York Daily News entertainment blogger Cristina Kinon wrote about the episode after catching a rerun last month. "I just sat on my bed and wept silent happy tears for 60 minutes," she said.
ASL MUSIC VIDEO GROUP TO RELEASE DEBUT DVD
Friday marks the debut DVD release for D-Pan (Deaf Performing Artists Network), a Ferndale, Mich. organization formed in 2006 to make music videos for deaf audiences. Music videos in American Sign Language aren't new, said the Detroit Free Press, but D-Pan represents a big leap forward with its high-quality production and license agreements with popular artists. Founder Sean Forbes, 26, grew up deaf in a family that loved music, and his father put him in touch with Joel Martin, a recording studio operator known for working with major stars. When Forbes brought in his demo tape of Eminem's "Lose Yourself," he was shocked to see Eminem himself hanging out in the studio's rec room. "It was kind of surreal," said Forbes. "But I could tell he was enjoying it."
ASL STORY TIME RETURNS TO DEAF WEST THEATRE
Deaf West Theatre has announced plans for a new year of its popular ASL Story Time workshops for deaf and hearing children and their parents. The free one-hour workshops take place at Deaf West's North Hollywood theater (5112 Lankershim Blvd.) on Saturday mornings at 10 a.m. starting October 5. Called "a hidden treasure" by one L.A. magazine, ASL Story Time is designed for ages 5-13 and offers children a chance to get on stage and create their own story characters. They'll run weekly through December 13 except for Thanksgiving weekend.
TEXAS ARTIST OPENS SOLO SHOW IN MIAMI
Deaf artist Joan Fabian of San Antonio, Texas is bringing her colorful and whimsical work to Florida this week with the opening of a solo exhibit, Play it Loud!, at the William Berger Gallery at the Miami Dade College. "My work borders on a sensibility that transcends contemporary art clichés to include social issues of media influences and psychological hierarchies," said Fabian, who has exhibited her work widely for more than 15 years. An opening is set for October 8 from noon to 2 p.m. and the exhibit will stay up until December 12.
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TOYOTA CHOOSES MSD ORIOLES FOR HALFTIME SPOT
A Los Angeles film crew was in Frederick, Md. last week filming a pair of 45-second documentaries about the Maryland School for the Deaf football team. The Orioles, winner of 65 of 72 games in Andy Bonheyo's first seven years as coach, will be one of eight American high schools featured during halftime shows of an NFL game this year. It's part of Toyota's annual "Line of Scrimmage" campaign, said The Frederick News-Post, with a focus on the country's "gutsiest" varsity football teams. "We were looking for a deaf high school," said producer Amanda Miller, and in MSD "we found such an extraordinarily successful team our decision was clear." The segments will air during NBC's Sunday Night games on October 12 and 19.
TWO SCHOOLS JOIN UP TO FIELD FOOTBALL TEAM
A Tucson, Ariz. newspaper reported last week on a combined football team of students from St. Augustine Catholic High School and the Arizona State Schools for the Deaf and the Blind. It was a marriage of convenience, said the Arizona Daily Star; the Catholic school had an athletics budget of $48,000 and 135 students but no practice field, uniforms or equipment, while ASDB had 70 students and a fraction of St. Augustine's budget but was already playing a junior varsity schedule and had the needed facilities. The hearing and deaf players have bonded well but they disagree on one thing, the team's name, with both the ASDB Sentinels and St. Augustine Wolves preferring to keep their own identities.
DOCUMENTARY EXPLORES ORIGINS OF BASEBALL SIGNS, SIGNALS
An invitation-only advance screening took place in Rochester, N.Y. on August 23 for Signs of the Time, a new documentary about "the myth, the mystery and the men behind the origin of the signs and signals" used in baseball today, said a PDF press release. Producers from Crystal Pix visited eight states, interviewed many baseball greats and re-enacted early-day baseball scenes for the film, which explores the contributions of deaf player William "Dummy" Hoy and Hall of Fame umpire Bill Klem. Academy Award-winning actor Richard Dreyfuss will narrate the final cut, and producers plan to enter the film into festivals locally and internationally while seeking a national network broadcast.
BIKERS' RUN BENEFITS DEAF SCHOOL IN MEXICO
Motorcyclists gathered in Auburn, Calif. last Saturday for the 8th Annual Children's Benefit Motorcycle Run. As in years past, said the Roseville Press Tribune, the event was a fund raiser for a school for the deaf in Rancho Sordo Mudo, in Baja Mexico. The event kicked off with an 8 a.m. Bikers' Service and featured live music, games, free rides, raffles and door prizes.
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Three Teacher Positions
Middle School Science (10 mth. position)*
Literacy Content Specialist - Pre K-12 (10 mth. position)*
Reading Content Specialist - Pre K-12 (10 mth. position)*
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Speech Language Pathologist (10 mth. position)*
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For more information about these positions, visit the Georgia Department of Education web site at http://www.doe.k12.ga.us/pea_hr_jobsearch.aspx
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Hamilton Relay in Massachusetts currently has a full time position open for a “Massachusetts TRS Outreach Manager”. This position can be located anywhere within Massachusetts.
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614 N. Easton Road, Glenside, PA 19038
215-884-9770 TTY/V 215-884-9774 FAX/VP
Deaf Services Center (DSC) is a dynamic team of behavioral health professionals serving Deaf and hard of hearing children and adults. We take great pride that our program is strongly Deaf centered with about 85% of our staff being Deaf or hard of hearing. Our staff environment is one of incredible teamwork and mutual support. As a result, we are rapidly growing with new programs and expansions of our existing programs. Whether you are a high school graduate, recent college graduate or have many years experience in the field of human services we have a career building position waiting for you!
DSC is looking for dedicated, motivated, energetic individuals who are fluent in American Sign Language and knowledgeable about Deaf Culture and the Deaf Community to fill the following positions:
- Community Mental
- Staff Interpreter
- Case Manager
- Residential Counselors
Come be a part of our exciting growing professional TEAM! For more information go to our website at www.salisb.com under our job section.
Send your letter of intent and resumes to:
Linda Sivigny-Claypool, Office Manager/HR
Deaf Services Center
614 N. Easton Road, Glenside, PA 19038
Email: email@example.com or Fax: 215-884-9774
Therapeutic Staff Support—TSS Professionals
Looking for an enticing job that challenges your character and skills? Look no further! Working with children in an apprenticeship role will instill you with new skills that can be used in fields such as: psychology, education, business and government.
You will learn the magical art of healthy working relationships in the classroom, conjuring boundaries with children and learn the valuable trade of managing children’s behaviors.
You will be provided with resources and support from the behavior specialist on a weekly basis. Have strong “people’s person skills? You will find this job to be a good fit, and for those who strive to be a “people’s person” the behavior specialist s will teach you valuable skills to help you be successful in the workplace environment.
TSS candidates must possess a bachelors degree in Psychology, Social Work, Human Services or related field and one year previous work experience with children or at minimum 60 college credits and three years work experience with children.
TSS Aide candidates must possess a high school diploma and two years of verified volunteer or paid work experience with children.
All applicants must be proficient in American Sign Language (ASL).
Case assignments are generally in a school setting, however some clients require services in the home. Work hours vary from ten to thirty hours per week based on approved client hours and staff flexibility to accept more than one assignment. Work is available in Philadelphia and Bucks County.
For immediate consideration please email your resume to firstname.lastname@example.org or via fax to 267-525-7014.
For additional information about our company log on to our website
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