Monday, October 26, 2020

Deaf advocacy group says deaf voters not given enough access to vote

A Deaf advocacy group wants video remote interpretation services available at every early voting site in Texas. No Barriers Communications says deaf voters in Bexar County aren’t getting adequate access to voting. Only one location in the county has assistent for daef voters. KSAT-TV has a video report.

“Are you really deaf?”

A deaf Florida woman was challenged by a Delta flight attendant as to whether she was really deaf. Kelli Duncan was wearing a maske that read “Just Deaf, Not Rude.” As she and a friend were getting on their flight attendant who was behind me rudely demanded, “Are you really deaf?” Read more on the story here.

Sunday, October 25, 2020

Research on better hearing with implants in noisy environments

An Australian researcher says he has developed a new way to predict how to tweak cochlear implants for recipients in order to more quickly improve their hearing in noisy situations. Greg Watkins, who holds a Ph.D. in biomedical engineering, believes the result of his findings might lead to personalized implants. Watkins himself has two cochlear implants. He says:
Greg Watson
credit: University of Sydney 
Despite their successes, there remain areas such as the cochlear implant's performance in noisy environments where a personalised approach in taking the sound from the environment and translating that into electrical stimulation could conceivably make a world of difference.
His findings are published in the Ear and Hearing journal. Read more about the research from the University of Sydney here.

DeafBlind poet, essayist gets $50k grant

A DeafBlind poet will receive a $50,000 grant. John Lee Clark is among 20 Disability Future Fellows from around the country selected by the Ford Foundation and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Clark is from Minnesota and has authored the essay collection Where I Stand: On the Signing Community and My DeafBlind Experience as well as a poetry chapbook called Suddenly Slow. Below is a video of Clark talking about the Douglas Bullard book Islay.

Thursday, October 22, 2020

UK TV personality: My Deaf Brother's "living hell"

British television personality Josie Gibson was emotional on the show This Morning as she talked about the difficulties faced by her deaf brother, Harry. She calls his experiences during the pandemic a "living hell." Gibson, who won the 11th season of Big Brother. points to the difficulty of being able to lip-read while people are using face masks. Ironically, the video does not have captions but here is part of what she said:
We are so privileged to be able to still communicate even though we wear a face mask. Imagine going into a shop and be totally cut off from everybody in that shop Not only do they use it - lip reading - to communicate, they use the whole bottom part as expression. They won't know if people are trying to talk to them, if people are trying to get their attention. They don't know how people are feeling - they wouldn't know the emotion of that person because they're just so cut off from that person. Everywhere, we're told wear mask, save lives, but we've forgotten about this community where these masks are making their lives a living hell.

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Tech firm settles lawsuit over refusing to interview Deaf worker

A New Jersey company will pay $77,500 to settle a lawsuit over its treatment of a prospective deaf employee. Conduent Business Services refused to even interview the qualified deaf applicant once it discovered a sign language interpreter would be needed. The company has now agreed to change its reasonable accommodation policy and offer ADA training to its employees. Read more about the settlement here.

Friday, October 16, 2020

The Making of ‘Deaf U'” panel

Gallaudet University organized a panel to talk about “The Making of ‘Deaf U'” on Tuesday. Watch it below and read more about the video gathering from Variety here.

Nyle DiMarco: how working on Deaf U made him reflect on his own college experience

Nyle DiMarco from his Instagram

Nyle DiMarco spoke with Entertainment Weekly about how he enjoyed his time at Gallaudet University. His new Netflix series Deaf U follows the lives of recent Gally students, which put him in a nestaglic mood. He said his time at Gallaudet helped him appreciate the diversity within the Deaf community:
There are people like me who'd be labeled as part of the elites because I come from a deaf family, I grew up in the deaf community, and I went to deaf schools. There was a time when I arrived at Gallaudet not considering other students coming in without the same background. So maybe my behavior could've been perceived as harmful by them. It's really a conversation about learning our own positioning within our community and learning how we're leveraging our positioning to support the entirety of the community and back one another as a whole.
DiMarco also reveals how he got into trouble at the school. Read the entire ET interview here.

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Deaf author: Don't buy my book

Adam Pottle doesn't want you to buy his new book, "The Most Awesome Character in the World." The children's story follows a young deaf girl who decides to write her own book. The Canadian writer who was born deaf is unhappy with an illustration the publisher, New York's Reycraft Books, inserted depicting what he calls an "Asian stereotype." Pottle told the CBC: "The book is supposed to be a celebration of deaf culture, it's supposed to be a celebration of the deaf community, and of imagination." Read more about the story here.

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Shooting outside Deaf School

Three were people were shot in front of the Rhode Island School for the Deaf yesterday afternoon. One of them has died while another was shot in the leg and the third was shot in the abdomen. Police say none of the victims were students. Five people were in an SUV when the shots rang out. A man who was not hit drove the others to the hospital. Here is a video report from WPRI-TV or read the story here.

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

SignVote is helping to provide voter information in ASL

SignVote has been helping Deaf communities get to the polls since 2016. The nonpartisan organization started by the Communication Service for the Deaf provides voting information in social media suing ASL. WDVM-TV has a video report or read more information here.

Monday, October 12, 2020

Deaf School leadership doesn't have the support of alumni and parents

Alumni and parents of students at the Maryland School for the Deaf say that the superintendent and Board of Trustees have repeatedly failed to address the pervasive culture of racism and elitism at the school and are demanding a systematic change in leadership, reports Patch. Catherine Griswold said in public testimony: 

As a parent, what I saw repeatedly was elitism…generationally deaf students are given special treatments with sports, awards classes, grades, teachers etc. Deaf students, who are second-generation deaf, are next in line of priority. Newly deaf come beneath them and hard of hearing are treated very differently and almost like sub-class citizens.

Read the article here.

Saturday, October 10, 2020

How The Deaf Community Challenged The White House—And Won

Here is the backstory on why the Trump administration must now provide an ASL interpreter at all future coronavirus press briefings. Allison Norlian has the story here.