Braille Monitor                                                             March 2007

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Legislative Agenda of Blind Americans: Priorities for the 110th Congress, First Session


The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) is the Voice of the Nation's Blind. We present the collective views of blind people throughout society. All of our leaders and the vast majority of our members are blind, but anyone can participate in our movement. Every year approximately 75,000 people become blind in America, and there are an estimated 1.3 million blind people in the U.S. The social and economic consequences of blindness affect not only the blind, but also our families, our friends, and our coworkers. Three legislative initiatives require the immediate attention of the 110th Congress. These urgent action items include:

1. We urge Congress to require higher education textbook publishers to produce electronic editions for blind students in an accessible standard format. This can be accomplished by enacting legislation that will:

2. We urge Congress, in considering amendments to the Help America Vote Act (HAVA), to affirm the right of the blind to vote independently and in private. Enacted legislation should:


3. We urge Congress to amend Title II of the Social Security Act to mandate a schedule of increases in the level of earnings allowed for blind individuals before applying a work penalty, as follows:

For more information about these priorities, please consult the attached fact sheets.

Other priorities that may present opportunities for legislative action in this session of Congress include:

For more information on any of these priorities, please contact James McCarthy, director of governmental affairs for the National Federation of the Blind, (410) 659-9314, ext. 2207, or visit us online at <www.nfb.org>.
Blind Americans need your help to achieve our goals of economic security, increased opportunity, and full integration into American society on a basis of equality. Enactment of these legislative proposals will represent important steps toward reaching these goals. We need the help and support of each member of Congress. Our success benefits not only us, but the whole of America as well.

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