Wednesday, May 30, 2012

NAD Controversy

There's a controversy over an NAD speaker at this year's biennial meeting in Louisville. The National Association of the Deaf meets in the Kentucky town from July 3-7.  South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard is scheduled to speak on the importance of the deaf community taking part in the political process, particularly when it comes to advocating for their rights. Daugaard is considered the first CODA (Child of Deaf Adults) to serve as a governor. He grew up using ASL and he even worked as a certified interpreter. However, there are complaints in the LGBT community that "Daugaard's view doesn't belong at the NAD conference" and his invitation should be cancelled. The Republican opposes many of the goals of the deaf LGBT community such as same-sex marriage. Some have accused Daugaard of having a hand in the recent closing of the South Dakota School for the Deaf in Sioux Falls, but he was not governor at the time it was shut down. In response to the controversy, NAD has reportedly added a LGBT luncheon to the conference and a LGBT equality policy.