May 9, 2012
Vol. 8, No. 26
Editor: Tom Willard
Deafweekly is an independent news report for the deaf and hard-of-hearing community that is mailed to subscribers on Wednesdays and available to read at www.deafweekly.com. These are the actual headlines and portions of recent deaf-related news articles, with links to the full story. Minor editing is done when necessary. Deafweekly is copyrighted 2012 and any unauthorized use is prohibited. Please support our advertisers; they make it possible for you to receive Deafweekly.
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Last issue's most-read story:
JOEL BARISH: NO BARRIERS FOR THIS DEAF GUY / Barefoot
in the Burbs
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TWO TEENAGERS CHARGED WITH MOLESTING DEAF ROSWELL BOY ON SCHOOL BUS
Two teenage students at the Atlanta Area School for the Deaf are charged with molesting a 10-year-old Roswell boy on their school bus for much of this school year. The two accused, one 16 and one 14, are being charged as adults and were to appear in Fulton County Superior Court last Thursday on charges of aggravated child molestation and aggravated sodomy, according to the court. Tommy Lee Maddox, a lawyer for the 10-year-old, said both boys sodomized his client from September until early 2012. / The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
GEORGIA'S TREATMENT OF DEAF ADULTS VIOLATES ADA
Georgia is discriminating against deaf people with developmental disabilities by denying them access to public mental health services tailored to the deaf, a federal judge ruled. Renita Belton and Matthew Erickson, two deaf adults with severe mental and developmental disorders, sued the state on behalf of all Georgians in need of mental health care who cannot benefit from state-funded services due to the lack of accommodations for the deaf. / Courthouse News Service
911 TEXTING SERVICES TO HELP HEARING IMPAIRED, DEAF COMMUNITY
A big change is coming to select emergency 911 systems as soon as next year. Hearing impaired Verizon Wireless customers will be able to text their messages to 911. Lindsay Ryan Anthony was born deaf. Being deaf didn’t stop her from going to the Rochester Institute of Technology and Cayuga College for her social work degree, but it has stopped her from being able to call 911. “To be able to text 911, it'd be so much easier than relying on a hearing person to call for me,” Lindsay said. / WSYR
MONTGOMERY ANNOUNCES NEW MC311 NUMBER FOR DEAF RESIDENTS
Montgomery County’s Customer Service Center, MC311, has a new Text Telephone (TTY) phone number, according to a county news release. The new number to call for a TTY connection is 301-251-4850. Those who use the Maryland or Video Relay services should contact the MC311 customer service center by dialing the number for outside the county calls, 240-777-0311. / Gazette.Net
Broken Arrow, OK
SCHOOL FOR THE DEAF STRUGGLES TO PAY ITS TEACHERS
A school for deaf children in Broken Arrow is struggling to pay its teachers. Happy Hands is a Christian non-profit and the director admits -- some of the staff haven't seen a paycheck in several months -- including her. Happy Hands started 18 years ago with seven students and one teacher. The program now has 50 students and 19 teachers, but funding has stalled this year. / KOTV
New York, NY
HEARING-IMPAIRED BRONX BOY WINS READING AWARD, SCHOLARSHIP
It took years for Jose Negron to acquire basic reading skills. He was born with a hearing impairment that made it difficult to learn with other children. Jose, 13, entered sixth grade at Equality Charter School in Co-op City at a first-grade reading level. But after two years of diligent work with trained support staff, he has a reason to be proud: he is a recipient of the Scholastic System 44 All-Star award. "It feels exciting and good," said Negron, who gets his thoughts across in a soft voice. / NY Daily News
HEARING-IMPAIRED MAN SAYS 10TH JUDICIAL DISTRICT DIDN'T PROVIDE ASSISTANCE
A Lamar rancher is perusing a claim against the 10th Judicial District, alleging he was not given hearing assistance after he told a judge he was deaf in one ear. Fritz Sturgis claims he became confused during a divorce proceeding in 2007 after he was unable to hear questions by his ex-wife's attorney. Sturgis filed a letter with the Department of Justice and also made a complaint to the Colorado Judicial District. / The Pueblo Chieftain
STAFFER FOR REP. KEVIN YODER HELPS HIM CONNECT WITH DEAF COMMUNITY
Capitol Hill overflows with ambitious interns, but Zach Ennis might have his colleagues beat. He arrived in Rep. Kevin Yoder’s (R-Kan.) office in February hoping to create, produce and appear in a video with the congressman. He got his wish. Ennis and Yoder recently published a public service announcement-style video message on YouTube in which they explain the resources and services the congressman’s office can provide to deaf constituents. It’s already Yoder’s most-watched video. / The Hill
San Francisco, CA
FIRST GRANT OF $1,250 AWARDED TO DEAF TEEN LEADERSHIP CAMP OF WASHINGTON STATE
The Deafhood Foundation has awarded its first ever grant of $1,250 to Deaf Teen Leadership camp program under Washington State Association of the Deaf. The camp serves Deaf teens from a variety of programs, ranging from residential to oral. “That is FANTASTIC news! We are so excited to know that you have chosen Deaf Teen Leadership camp and will support our deaf youth!” said Maria Christianson, Camp Director of Deaf Teen Leadership. / The Deafhood Foundation
FLA. PSC KEEPS DEAF PHONE SERVICE CHARGE UNCHANGED
The monthly surcharge Florida telephone users pay to support a special service for deaf and other hearing impaired customers will remain unchanged at 11 cents. The Florida Public Service Commission on Tuesday approved the fee for the budget year beginning July 1. It will be the fifth straight year the surcharge has been the same. The commission also approved an $11.8 million annual budget with a projected $2.25 million deficit for the Florida Relay System. / The Miami Herald
New York, NY
CENTER FOR HEARING AND COMMUNICATION RINGS BELL AT NEW YORK STOCK EXCHANGE
President Jeffrey M. Cohen of the Center for Hearing and Communication (CHC) rang The Closing Bell at the New York Stock Exchange April 26th to celebrate 102 years of hearing health care leadership and put the spotlight on healthy hearing for Better Hearing and Speech Month in May. Throughout May, CHC will offer educational programs, free hearing screenings, and a free captioned phone to encourage people to take care of their hearing. / CHC
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'HEARING LOSS SAW MY WORLD SHRINK'
Health reporter Emily Cleland marks Deaf Awareness Week by finding out what it's like to experience hearing loss through the use of professionally fitted ear plugs. As I failed to entirely catch what a shop assistant said to me for the second time that day, I just nodded, smiled and followed her meekly to the relevant aisle where she helpfully pointed at what I was looking for. I had lost count of the number of times I had largely missed what someone had said to me. / This is Gloucestershire
LETTER: DEAF PATIENTS DESERVE TO HAVE INTERPRETERS
During Deaf Awareness Week (May 7-13) we are highlighting the barriers facing patients who are deaf and calling on local health services to commission interpreting services that use only appropriately qualified sign language interpreters. New research shows that 41% of surveyed people who use British Sign Language (BSL) as their first language have left a health appointment feeling confused about their medical condition, because the interpretation was not of an adequate standard. / Belfast Telegraph
INSPIRATION TO DEAF CHILDREN
Being born deaf has never stood in the way of Ipswich woman Ceilidh O'Sullivan's ambition. The Peak Crossing 22-year-old, who completely lost her hearing as a teenager - was a successful BMX rider before she embarked on a mission to help deaf kids in Africa. After receiving a life changing cochlea implant and learning to listen and speak again, Ms O'Sullivan joined the Boanerges Deaf Initiative and has since taken a key role in establishing schools specifically for deaf kids in the central African country of Uganda. / Ipswich Queensland Times
Wellington, New Zealand
COUNCIL RECOGNIZED FOR COMMITMENT TO DEAF COMMUNITY
Hutt City Mayor Ray Wallace says he was "incredibly proud" to accept the Public Service Award on behalf of Hutt City Council at the New Zealand Sign Language in Action Awards on Saturday night. The award recognises service providers that have been helpful to Deaf New Zealanders and can show a strong commitment to the Deaf community. It follows the launch of a Deaf access centre in council's building on Laings Road. / Voxy.co.nz
Manawatu, New Zealand
BID TO GIVE DEAF EQUALITY OF SERVICE HAILED
There are hopes Manawatu deaf children will get better services as the Government plans to create a national board of trustees to spread resources evenly throughout the country. Education Minister Hekia Parata said education for deaf and hearing-impaired children was below par. "The new board will be tasked with lifting the achievement of deaf and hearing-impaired learners. [It] aims to provide more co-ordinated, consistent, nationally fair provision of services to all deaf and hearing-impaired students. / Stuff.co.nz
New Delhi, India
ADMIT HEARING IMPAIRED CHILD, PAY RS 10,000 FEE: HIGH COURT TO SCHOOL
Criticising the stand of the Mother’s International School in denying admission to a hearing-impaired child at the entry-level in the last academic session, the Delhi High Court has ordered the school to admit him in Class I now and pay Rs 10,000 fee. The school had denied admission to the child for the session 2011-12 on the ground that his case was considered under the general category and he failed to qualify. / Indian Express
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
GAZAN NGO HELPS DEAF PEOPLE FIND WORK
A non-profit organization in the Gaza strip is offering deaf children health care, social services, education and work opportunities in a bid to improve their lives and integrate them into society. Atfaluna Society for Deaf Children, established in 1992, currently has 300 students attending classes from nursery up to high school. Wala Ziyadeh, a teacher at the school, teaches deaf children to read and write. / Al-Arabiya
FORUM SEEKS TO INTEGRATE DEAF WOMEN INTO SOCIETY
The Qatar Centre of Social Culture for the Deaf (QCSCD), in association with the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) launched the first training forum for deaf women in the country, under the slogan “Trust your abilities." “This is considered an unprecedented event in the Arab region and we firmly trust that it will have positive result for the participants,” said Abdul Razzak al-Kuwari, director of Youth Centres at the Ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage. / Gulf Times
BANK SOHAR BACKS DEAF CHILDREN'S WEEK
Bank Sohar sponsored the Deaf Children (Hearing Impaired Children’s) Week event, which was held under the auspices of Khalil bin Abdullah al Khonji, Chairman of Oman Chamber of Commerce and Industry (OCCI) at Qurum City Centre, recently. The exciting opening ceremony included an Art exhibition by 40 students of ''Al Amal School for Hearing Impaired." / Oman Daily Observer
STONE CARVING CENTER GIVES WORK TO DEAF CHILDREN
A professional stone carver and educator, Ronika Tandi (37), of Manyame Park Chitungwiza, founded Shungu Arts Centre last year to help provide employment for pupils of Emerald Hills School for the Deaf. Tandi looked visibly concerned about welfare of the deaf. She narrated to The Zimbabwean how she was touched by the plight of the deaf who ended up begging on the streets after receiving artistic skills at Emerald Hills. / The Zimbabwean
DEAF TO GET DRIVER'S LICENSES SOON
Justice Minister Mark Golding says he will soon be making recommendations to Cabinet, which will make it possible for the deaf and persons with other disabilities to get drivers’ licences. Last week, Government Senator Floyd Morris expressed disappointment about the long delay in enacting legislation, to allow disabled Jamaicans to obtain a driver’s licence. He said disabled Jamaicans continue to be denied access to a driver’s licence, while disabled people from some foreign countries can legally drive in Jamaica. / Go-Jamaica
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LIFE & LEISURE
'I SAW A MIRACLE'
Marie Blackwell gagged loudly. But no one could hear her. The deaf students on the bus were fast asleep. The bus driver, also deaf, seemed a million miles away. Blackwell continued to gag in hopes of freeing the piece of hard candy that lodged in her throat. But it didn't budge. As the seconds passed by, she became increasingly frightened. "I didn't know the Heimlich Maneuver to do on myself," she said. / Chicago Tribune
New York, NY
TEACHING A DEAF CHILD HER MOTHER'S TONGUE
Most babies are born into the culture and community of their families. If the family is Latino or Tatar or Han Chinese, so is the baby. The baby learns the family’s language -- “the mother tongue.” Culture and language are passed down from parents to child. Except when the child is born deaf. I am the mother of two daughters, both diagnosed deaf within their first weeks of life. My husband and I, both hearing, faced complicated decisions from the very start. / The New York Times
Delray Beach, FL
RESEARCHERS TO STUDY FIRE ALARMS FOR HEARING IMPAIRED
A study focused on how the hearing impaired can be awakened during a fire or similar emergency will begin tonight at Delray Medical Center's sleep labs. Through a grant and a co-sponsorship program, three dozen deaf patients will be awakened during their deep REM sleep over a three-month period. Dr. Gerri Penney, community education coordinator for Palm Beach County Fire Rescue, said the study is focused on people who are deaf or have hearing problems and are age 50 or older. She said researchers are still looking for volunteers. / South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Clarks Summit, PA
HUNDREDS TAKE A RIDE TO CAR SHOW TO BENEFIT SCHOOL FOR DEAF
Joe Doherty walked among the more than 120 classic and hot rod cars with his family Sunday afternoon, admiring the colorful array of vehicles that reminded him of his youth. "I come here and I'm back in high school again," Mr. Doherty chuckled, pointing out a shiny red Ford Starliner hardtop convertible. The Clarks Summit man and his family were among the hundreds who stopped by the Scranton School for Deaf & Hard-of-Hearing Children for the ninth annual car show to benefit the school. / The Times-Tribune
DEAF MINISTRIES: SIGNS OF GOD'S MESSAGE
On a recent Sunday at First Baptist Church Spartanburg, Earl Wright stood in front of a class of 25 to 30 people and taught a lesson. He didn't use his voice, nor did any words escape his mouth; instead, he spoke with quiet, yet lively, hand motions. Most everyone in the room was deaf, including Wright. They all talked to each other, and to God, using sign language. / Spartanburg Herald-Journal
St. Augustine, FL
SLIDESHOW: FLORIDA SCHOOL FOR THE DEAF & THE BLIND PROM / StAugustine.com
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DEAF-COMMUNICATION PIONEER TO RECEIVE HONORARY DEGREE
On May 18, Rob Engelke, chief executive officer of Ultratec, Inc., will receive an honorary doctorate at a commencement ceremony at the Kohl Center on the UW-Madison campus. Engelke was cited for creating extraordinary advances that have enabled deaf and hard-of-hearing people worldwide to communicate via telephone. In the 1970s, Engelke was building computers and selling them to campus researchers. At about the same time that Apple’s founders were making computers in the garage, Engelke had already moved on. / University of Wisconsin-Madison
HOMETOWN HONORS WEAVER'S HUMANITARIAN WORK WITH DEAF AND BLIND CHILDREN
In a span of nearly 50 years, Robert Weaver has made more than 12,000 visits to the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind, and that estimate may be conservative. Early in his career as a volunteer -- and it truly has been a career -- he started providing ice cream cones to the children there. "I knew they had the best food in the world, but then I said, 'I wonder if they ever get ice cream served in a cone?' " Weaver explained. " So I tried it, and I loved it, and I've been scraping ice cream ever since." / NASCAR.com
Long Beach, CA
BREAKING THROUGH SILENCE: SIGN-LANGUAGE SERVICES (AND COFFEE) AT THE BIRDCAGE
When I sat down to interview the principals involved in an American Sign Language (ASL) class being given at Birdcage Coffee House over the next seven Sundays, I realized something: This was the first time I'd had a conversation with deaf people. A lot of us hearing folk are in that boat. That's part of the point of the class. "You don't have to go out and try and to find a deaf person to try to practice your signs with or try to experience deaf culture," says Ken Datugan, who presented the idea for the class to owner Eleno Machuca shortly after the Birdcage opened in July 2009. / Long Beach Post
WEST MONROE PARTNERS COMPLETES PRO-BONO TECHNOLOGY PROJECT FOR ADWAS
West Monroe Partners, a North American business and technology consulting firm, today announced that it has completed a pro-bono project for Abused Deaf Women's Advocacy Services (ADWAS) in Seattle. West Monroe Partners provided services to help stabilize and improve ADWAS's technology infrastructure, ensuring reliable communication between the organization and its residents and stakeholders. / MarketWatch
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Los Angeles, CA
JOHNNY DEPP LAUGHS OFF SIGN LANGUAGE ERROR IN MY VALENTINE VIDEO
ohnny Depp has poked fun at criticism of his sign language efforts in Sir Paul Mccartney's My Valentine video after deaf music fans highlighted a mistake in the promo. The Beatles legend recruited the Pirates of the Caribbean hunk and actress Natalie Portman to sign the lyrics to his new song in a black-and-white film directed by MCCartney himself and Depp enjoyed taking part in the shoot. He says, "I've known him on and off through the years and ran into him. Then he gave me a call and asked me if I would be interested in being in his video. (I said), 'Certainly, let's do it.' It was a gas (a lot of fun)." / Contactmusic
See Also THE GUY WHO TAUGHT JOHNNY DEPP AND NATALIE PORTMAN SIGN LANGUAGE IN MCCARTNEY VIDEO / Intimate Excellent
West Hartford, CT
NATIONAL THEATRE OF THE DEAF ANNOUNCES MOVE TO EUGENE O'NEILL'S MONTE CRISTO
Betty Beekman, Interim Executive Director announced that the company is returning to the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center and will retain an office in the historic Monte Cristo Cottage in New London, Conn. The company will continue to operate the Little Theatre of the Deaf in West Hartford. “We are very honored and pleased to be is this beautiful building that plays such an important part in American theatrical history,” Beekman said, “and to be back at the O’Neill; where we started and where we belong.” / Broadway World
See Also LITTLE THEATRE OF THE DEAF PERFORMS 'THE W-5' FOR O'NEILL CENTER RESIDENCY, 5/18 / Broadway World
DEAF MUSICIANS ROCK CHICAGO
The century-old building was shaking Friday night at Columbia College. On the stage were three guys: Mark Levin on guitar, Jake Bass on the keyboard and the other with his arms flying in all directions. The "other one" is Sean Forbes, the guy who raps the lyrics of song after song. Both Sean and Mark are deaf. Jake is the one with hearing in the normal range–he manages the sound system. The three of them tour the U.S. together, entertaining audiences in city after city. / Chicago Tribune
St. Augustine, FL
FSDB STUDENT SHINES IN PLAY ABOUT DEAF WORLD
Kristina Garcia-Santiago went to tryouts for “Children of a Lesser God” at Limelight Theatre with hopes of landing the role of Lydia, described as “a student; has some residual hearing; a lip reader.” She walked away with one of the lead roles, Sarah Norman: “a young woman, deaf from birth, who works at the school.” Garcia-Santiago, 17, is about to graduate from the Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind and is looking forward to a new life as a theater major at Florida School of the Arts. / The St. Augustine Record
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Baton Rouge, LA
STUDENT PARTICIPATES IN USA DEAF SOCCER CAMP
After 15 years of hard work and training, a University student with a hearing impairment got the chance to play soccer with some of the top athletes in the nation. Kinesiology junior Craig Verdin, a goalkeeper, traveled to Columbus, Ohio, this weekend to train with the USA Deaf Soccer team. The team represents the country in international games. Spots on the team are hard to come by because only one or two players are invited to attend each tryout, Verdin said. He estimated about 25 to 26 people were at his tryout camp. / The Daily Reveille
St. Augustine, FL
MORE SUMMER CAMP OPPORTUNITIES
The Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind is hosting several summer camps at its St. Augustine campus for children of all ages across the state who are deaf/hard of hearing and/or blind/visually impaired. The camps below are free and open to Florida residents who are not currently enrolled at FSDB. FSDB is taking applications for its summer camps through June 8. / StAugustine.com
3RD ANNUAL DEAF/HARD OF HEARING OLYMPIC DAY
More than 30 deaf and hard-of-hearing children from the tri-state area had the chance to get together on Friday. That was at the 3rd annual Deaf and Hard of Hearing Olympic Day at the Onalaska YMCA. The children played basketball, played in the gym, and swam in the pool. / WXOW
ASL Sports will be holding its annual baseball clinics this June. All children, any age, who are deaf, hard of hearing, or have physical and/or cognitive disabilities, are invited to attend. What: The clinics are free of charge and will have experienced youth baseball players to help train your kids. American Sign Language interpreters will be on-site throughout the clinics. Snacks, drinks, and pizza will be provided! / ASL Sports
Silver Spring, MD
CALL FOR CERTIFIED DEAF INTERPRETERS
Due to the increasing number of Deaf-Blind registrants, the National Association of the Deaf (NAD) and Access Interpreting (Access) are re-opening the Call for Deaf Interpreters and extending the deadline to May 30, 2012. Please join our team of interpreters at the 51st Biennial National Association of the Deaf Conference in Louisville, Kentucky and make this the best Conference yet! The Conference will take place in Louisville, Kentucky from July 3-7, 2012. / NAD
Las Vegas, NV
JUST THREE MONTHS LEFT TO THE DEAFNATION WORLD EXPO 2012
It's nearly time! The largest event for the Deaf on the planet is returning to Las Vegas from July 29-August 1st, are you ready? We are expecting 30,000 people from 80 different countries to join a massive celebration of language, culture, and pride! Are you ready to go? / DeafNation
DANIEL P. GRIFFIN JR., ADVOCATE FOR THE DEAF
Daniel P. Griffin Jr., 93, died April 25, 2012, in Houston. He was twice elected president of the International Parent Organization, a worldwide association of 15,000 parents of deaf children, one of three divisions of The Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf. He was named to the board of directors and to the executive committee at the same worldwide organization. In 1970, under the sponsorship of the Clarke School for the Deaf in Northampton, he wrote and directed a documentary motion picture titled "Everything But Hear." / The Daily Hampshire Gazette
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