(back) (contents)

The Braille Monitor – January, 2001 Edition


Monitor Miniatures

APH Update:

In the October issue we reported on a labor disagreement at the American Printing House for the Blind between narrators and management. We have recently been told by both sides that there is still no agreement. Officially the APH's offer remains what it was last April--characterized by narrators as a reduction in pay rate from the present one, no benefits (other than a 401K), and no union security. Management says that a letter has been sent assuring narrators that they have no intention of reducing pay and that a pay increase is in the cards.

Narrators say that the union bargaining committee requested a strike authorization from the full membership in November and was authorized to call a strike if and when deemed necessary. The vote margin was two to one, with all but two members voting. After the first of the year the narrators say they will probably request a last-ditch meeting with APH to see if this authorization will persuade management to modify its position. If not, a strike is likely.

APH has contracted with NLS for 500 books plus ten magazines. Narrators question whether APH can fulfill this contract with no new narrators and with some of the present ones considering reducing their studio time because of advancing years. A strike, narrators say, would severely affect APH's ability to fulfill its contract, especially since, if there is a strike, it is likely to be a lengthy one. Management says that NLS will certainly see that all publications are recorded even if APH has problems.


Attention Blind and Sighted People Interested in Being O&M Instructors:

Due to the high demand for graduates from the orientation and mobility program at Louisiana Tech University, we are seeking blind and sighted students for our one-year master's degree program. Scholarships are available for all students who meet the application requirements. Applicants completing the course of study earn a master's degree in educational psychology with a concentration in orientation and mobility.

Louisiana Tech University, one of Louisiana's major universities, is within three blocks of the Louisiana Center for the Blind (LCB), which serves as host for internships; practica; seminars; and liberal doses of down-home, southern fun and friendship with students and staff. One of the nation's premier training centers for the blind, Louisiana Center for the Blind is known for its highly successful rehabilitation and education programs for blind adults and children. O and M coursework incorporates theory and best practices of traditional university-based programs with progressive agency-training, grounded in the discovery-learning method.

For more information or to learn more about our program, e-mail Dr. Ruby Ryles <[email protected]> or call (318) 251-2891. Come join us as we begin a new era in the field of orientation and mobility.


Tuition Assistance for DC Residents:

We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

Are you a resident of Washington, D.C.? Do you need money for college? If you are, you may qualify for a grant--not a loan--to attend public colleges and universities nationwide. This grant pays the difference between in-state and out-of-state tuition. This means you pay the low in-state rate or get $2,500 a year to go to private colleges and universities in the Washington metropolitan area. To be eligible, students must have graduated from high school or received a GED on or after January 1, 1998.

For more information phone (202) 727-2824 or toll-free (877) 485-6751, TTY :(202) 727-1675, Para información en español llame al teléfono (202) 727-8450, <www.tuitiongrant.washingtondc.gov>. We're located at 441 4th Street, NW, Room 1040, Washington, D.C. 20001.


Price Cuts at Sighted Electronics:

We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

As of January 1, 2001, Sighted Electronics is lowering prices for the following products:

Index Basic S $2,495

Index Basic D $3,195

Index Everest $3,695

Index 4x4 Professional 17" $5,995

Index 4x4 Professional 23" $6,495

Everest Acoustic Hood $695

Basic Acoustic Cabinet, $ 795

Index Stapler for 4x4 17" $265

Stapler for 4x4 23" $ call

Optical Braille Recognition $895

Braillex EL2D- 80 $14,075

Braillex EL2D-66 $9,900

Braillex EL2D-40 $6,880

Braillex EL80 $10,500

Braillex EL40 desktop $5,650

Braillex EL40P portable $5,650

Braillex Tiny (40 cell) $4,500

Braille In Keyboard $795

The increased sales volumes for these products in the United States combined with the values of currencies overseas have allowed us to pass these price benefits on to you, the consumer. Contact David Pillischer, 69 Woodland Avenue, Westwood, New Jersey 07675, <www.sighted.com>, (800) 666-4883. Sighted Electronics thanks all of you for the support we have received over the past years.


Knitted Baby Afghans For Sale:

We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

For many years I have been selling knitted items such as mittens. I have recently gotten a pattern for a baby afghan. This is a unique item because it can be personalized with a name in the pattern. Great for a blind child. The afghan is very tactile. I would like to offer this for $20. Orders can be sent to Sylvia Connor at e-mail address <[email protected]>.



At the November meeting of the Richmond Area Federation of the Blind of Virginia, the following officers were elected: Marshall Jordan, President; Debbie Gardner, First Vice President; Bert Shankle, Second Vice President; Amelia Miller, Secretary; Anna Arrington, Treasurer; and Deb DeLorey, Ann Cutshall, and Dorothy Moore, Board Members.


For Sale:

We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

IBM-compatible 386 computer with Artic Speech synthesizer, modem, and monitor for sale. Asking $125.

Perkins Braillewriter, completely rebuilt, asking $325.

Braille Lite 2000. Freshly serviced by Blazie Engineering with a new battery pack. Not under service contract, but eligible for one since it was just inspected. Comes complete with power adaptor, carrying case, and PC connectors. Asking $1,750.

Payment plans may be negotiated for any of these items. Contact Nino Pacini, 5237 Hillcrest Street, Detroit, Michigan 48236-2103, (313) 885-7330, <[email protected]>.



At the 2000 convention of the National Federation of the Blind of Illinois, the following officers and board members were elected: Steve Benson, President; Debbie Kent Stein, First Vice President; Cathy Randall, Second Vice President; Patti Gregory Chang, Secretary; Pam Provost, Treasurer; and Kelly Doty and Lois Montgomery, Board Members.


Summer Music Institute and Resources for Blind Musicians:

We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

Students nationwide, tenth grade and older, are invited to request applications for the sixth Summer Institute for Blind College-Bound Musicians to be held in Bridgeport, Connecticut, in July.

This three-week residential program is for Braille users who have been taking music lessons at home and are serious about gaining skills necessary for the study of music in college. Areas taught include Braille music, computer notation and arranging skills, theory, keyboard, and ensemble.

Held on a college campus, the Institute offers students opportunities to live and work in a true-to-life situation, while also sharing the fun of summer outings, performing, and mingling with others of similar abilities and interests.

Enrollment is limited to ten students who will be accepted based on their applications and telephone interviews. A primary consideration for acceptance is the motivation to work on Braille music and a genuine need for the skills taught in order to get further in music study. Cost of the program is $2,000. Partial scholarships are available. Applications must be completed and returned by April 15. Students under the age of sixteen or in need of significant financial help should apply early.

The National Resource Center for Blind Musicians helps students, parents, teachers, and professional musicians with questions regarding Braille music and accessible music technology. Often it can put people in touch with a teacher or blind musician with expertise in a particular aspect of the field. The Resource Center has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to provide workshops for teachers at its headquarters and in various parts of the country and is available to help people of all ages explore options for Braille music and technology training.

For an application to the Summer Institute or to reach the National Resource Center, contact David Goldstein, Director, National Resource Center for Blind Musicians, Music and Arts Center for Humanity, 600 University Avenue, Bridgeport, Connecticut 06601, phone (203) 366-3300, or e-mail <[email protected]>.



The National Federation of the Blind of Indiana recently elected new officers. They are Ron Brown, President; Pam Schnurr, First Vice President; Paul Howard, Second Vice President; Diane Graves, Secretary; Diane Griffith, Treasurer; and Tammy Hollingsworth, Mike Neese, Connie Bernard, and Toni Danapus, Board Members.


Information on Federal Student Aid Programs:

We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

Learn about student loans, grants, and work-study programs from the following resources:

The Student Aid Audio Guide is available to anyone who wants it. It can be played on any audio CD player, and it contains information on federal student aid programs, application procedures, eligibility criteria, loan-repayment options, deferment and cancellation provisions, and non-federal resources as well. It lasts for approximately forty-five minutes. You may request individual copies from the Federal Student Aid Information Center, toll-free (800) 433-3243, open from 8:00 a.m. until midnight (Eastern Time) seven days a week. The Center's information specialists will answer questions about federal student aid in general or specific applications.

The Web sites are designed for text-only access, which makes them accessible for use with screen readers. The Federal Student Financial Aid home page address is <http://www.ed.gov/studentaid> and <students.gov>.

Students and parents can also request Braille copies of a student aid information publication by calling Federal Student Aid Information Center at (800) 433-3243. The publication is Funding Your Education, a booklet covering the essentials of the federal student financial aid programs, application procedures, eligibility criteria, etc. It is targeted to high school students.



The results of elections held by the NFB of California at its November 5, 2000, state convention are Nancy Burns, President; Nick Medina, First Vice President; Paul Carver, Second Vice President; Jana Littrell, Secretary; and Ellen Paxson Clegg, Treasurer. Members elected to two-year board terms are Bryan Bashin, Geraldine Croom, and Jim Willows.


For Sale:

We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

Telesensory CCTV 15-inch video magnifier, including receipts and all papers, never used, original cost $3,000, for $1,000 plus any shipping charges. Contact Martha Bebee, 5030 14th Street, W., Bradenton, Florida 34207.


The Baptist Hymnal Available in Braille and Large Print:

We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

A Braille edition of the 1991 Baptist Hymnal is now available in a two-volume set of three-inch three-ring polyurethane binders for easy access and removal of pages. The binders are dark crimson and have extended handles with snap closure for easy carrying. The set includes hymns and responsive readings. The price is $195 per set, plus shipping charges.

The Baptist Hymnal is also available in large print. It is an exact replica of the 1991 edition but in large print. It comes in two sturdy dark crimson, 11-inch-by-17-inch volumes with print enlarged to 18-, 20-, 22-, or 24-point text. The price is $145 per set, plus shipping charges.

To order, contact Blind-Sight Ministries, 1919 Oxmoor Road, #306, Birmingham, Alabama 35209, phone/fax: (205) 324-4339, cell phone: (205) 532-0553, e-mail: <[email protected]>.


New Chapter:

On September 30, 2000, the Kitsap County Chapter of the National Federation of the Blind of Washington was formed. The officers are Ivan Weich, President; Sharon Maalis, Vice President; and Jessamyn Ladby, Secretary/Treasurer. We welcome this new chapter into the Federation family.


Braille and Large-Print Billing Available:

We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

SBC Communications now offers Braille and large-print billing to customers in all of the company's subsidiaries, including Ameritech, Nevada Bell, Pacific Bell, and Southwestern Bell. For more information or to receive Braille or large-print bills, subscribers may contact their local customer service representatives.



The National Association of Guide Dog Users (NAGDU) held its meeting on July 2, 2000, in Atlanta. During that meeting the following officers were elected for two-year terms: Suzanne Whalen, President; Dana Ard, Vice President; Priscilla Ferris, Treasurer; and Eugenia Firth, Secretary.


In Memoriam:

With deep personal sadness I must report the death on December 11 of Barry Feazell, President of the Jacksonville Chapter, Treasurer of the Florida Association of Blind Merchants, and member of the NFB of Florida Board of Directors. Barry was active through the years in the Illinois, Ohio, and Florida affiliates. He was one of those Federationists who could be depended on to get the things done that he said he would do. Often just mentioning a problem in Barry's hearing was all a leader needed to do to have it disappear.

Barry is survived by his wife Carol and their eight children. Daughters Anne and Mary Beth, now twelve, both visited Congressional offices with their parents during Washington Seminars when they were small, and Susan and Peggie are now chapter leaders in their own right in Florida and Ohio.

Barry did not suffer fools gladly, but his heart was as large as they come. We never have enough members and friends like him, and he will be deeply missed. The entire Federation family has been diminished by Barry's death, and we extend our sympathy and comfort to Carol and their children.


New Chapter:

On August 22, 2000, the Hilton Head Island Chapter became the fifty-ninth chapter of the National Federation of the Blind of South Carolina with thirty-five charter members. The officers are Bob Martin, President; Jenny Haney, Secretary; John Eagan, Vice President; and Charles Ford, Treasurer.



I pledge to participate actively in the effort of the National Federation of the Blind to achieve equality, opportunity, and security for the blind; to support the policies and programs of the Federation; and to abide by its constitution.

(back) (contents)