APRIL ISSUE 1965
VOICE OF THE NATIONAL FEDERATION OF THE BLIND
The National Federation of the Blind is not an organization speaking for the blind- -it is the blind speaking for themselves
N. F.B, Headquarters 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley 8, Calif.
Published monthly in braille and distributed free to the blind by the National Federation of the Blind, President.Russell Kletzing, 2341 Cortez Lane, Sacramento, California 95825
Inkprint edition produced and distributed by the National Federation of the Blind, 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708
Acting Editor: Jacobus tenBroek Assistant Editor: Floyd W. Matson 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708
News items and changes of address should be sent to the Editor.
COURT MOVES IN KIRCHNER CASE
TWIN - PRONGED NEVADA PROGRAM
THROUGH COLLEGE WITH CANE AND BRAILLER
BATS AND BLINDNESS RESEARCH
A LETTER ON "TWO-FOR-ONE" FARE
VENDING STAND GAIN IN WYOMING
THE RIGHT TO FAIL
By David Soyer
PROPOSAL FOR POSTAGE STAMP
BLIND OSTEOPATHS AND PHYSIOTHERAPISTS IN BRITAIN
A SAUDI ARABIAN BLIND LEADER
By Charles R. Hulac
NFB PRESIDENT EARNS MORE HONORS
NEW BILL FOR BLIND VENDORS IN MASSACHUSETTS
AID FOR REHAB COUNSELING STUDENTS
NEW HAMPSHIRE BLIND HIT OFFICIAL
INDIANA BLIND MAKE STRONG GAINS
NEW MEXICO BLIND INTRODUCE TWO BILLS
OHIO BLIND FIGHT TITLE XVI THREAT
MARYLAND BLIND SEEKS ORIENTATION CENTER
MISSOURI BLIND LEADER INJURED
The United States Supreme Court in a possibly decisive move has remanded the Kirchner case to the California Supreme Court for clarification of the state court's opinion.
Specifically the California justices have been asked to say whether their decision was based upon state constitutional grounds or upon provisions of the Federal Constitution. "After plenary briefing and argument," said Mr. Justice Harlan speaking for the Supreme Court, "we are unable to say with requisite assurance that this court has jurisdiction in the premises."
"The California Supreme Court did not state whether its holding was based on the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States or the equivalent provision of the California Constitution, or both. " While we might speculate from the choice of words used in the opinion, and the authorities cited by the court, which provision was the basis for the judgement of the state court, we are unable to say with any degree of certainty that the judgement of the California Supreme Court was not based on an adequate and independent nonfederal ground. "
In its brief filed as amicus curiae before the United States Supreme Court, the NFB made two main points: 1) that the state court decision was securely grounded in requirements of the California constitution; 2) that all responsible relatives provisions inwelfare programs are federally unconstitutional. [See "NFB Acts in Vital Court Case, " THE BRAILLE MONITOR, Feb, 1965]
The effect of the remand action by the U. S. Supreme Court is to invite the California justices to rest their decision firmly upon state constitutional grounds. This would leave the Kirchner case in force in California. If the Kirchner decision stands in California, it is likely that this approach to relatives' responsibility will have far-reaching consequences for other welfare programs within the state. Moreover, the California precedent would be influential in weakening responsibility of relatives' provisions in other states as well. Thus the state decision, even though limited in this way, would still be of land-mark significance in the field of social welfare.
The California Supreme Court justices might conceivably decide to make a much bolder move and risk everything by making necessary a United States Supreme Court resolution of the problem of responsibility of relatives. In that event they would hold that they were required to reach their conclusion because of the United States Constitution. This would be in line with Mr. Justice Harlan's declaration that "we would have jurisdiction to review only if the federal ground has been the sole
basis for the decision, or the State Constitution was interpreted under what the state court deemed the compulsion of the Federal Constitution. The California justices are thus faced with a major problem of judicial statesmanship; whether to consolidate the gains already made in California; or to invite a national decision which might abolish responsible relatives nationally or on the other hand hold them constitutional everywhere in the country including California. Were the choice yours, what would you do?
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The 1965 legislative program of the Nevada Federation of the Blind is two-pronged. First, it hopes to insure that services for the blind will again become a separate division of the state's super-welfare agency, the Department of Health and Welfare. This is particularly important to the Nevadans, since not until such a separation was made of services for the blind from the general rehabilitation agency in the mid-fifties did Nevada's program for the blind begin to move forward. In 1963, a bill similar to the present one was passed and signed by the governor only to be repealed a few days later allegedly through an inadvertence, by a general reorganization bill.
The second goal of the Nevada Federation is a complete repeal of the residence requirement for aid to the blind. If successful, Nevada would join eight other states and territories which have achieved this goal.
Nevada's organized blind recently had stout support in its campaign from the NFB in the person of President Russ Kletzing. After an evening-long review of the legislation in arguments favoring it, the first order of business the following day was a meeting with Governor Grant Sawyer. Nevada's president, Audrey Tait, and legislative chairman K. O. Knudson led the delegation, which included all of the members of the state Federation's executive committee who were able to be present.
They and Russ presented to the governor the case for a separate Division of Services to the Blind. After a full discussion, he agreed that there would be no objection to the bill by the administration if the proposal to include public assistance for the blind were dropped out of the proposed division.
A few minutes after the meeting with the governor broke up, the House committee met and considered both bills. The committee appeared to react favorably but no vote was taken at the time. Blind Nevadans are redoubling their efforts to keep these bills moving.
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(Editor's note: The following article, written by Carl Irving, is reprinted from the OAKLAND TRIBUNE, February 21, 1965. )
A dark and moldering shack on the University of California campus is filled daily with a number of bright and hopeful students, who depend on sound and Braille for their educations.
The barriers are slowly coming down in the outside world for the sightless, and U. C. long has had a number of them enrolled in a growing variety of subjects.
Every day, the blind make their way to the campus, usually alone, trained in the use of a slender white stick. A few use guide dogs. Between classes, they assemble in the World War II "temporary" structure across from the main library. There, many of them have tape recorders. Braille typewriters, and sets of books in the perforated language that is read with the fingers. Some have readers available.
The building is shabby and badly run down. But the students are grateful for a place, any place, to study. Blind students depend on sound for learning, a process that bans them from the public library.
More than 25 students who are sightless are enrolled here, and belong to an association headed by 21 year old Michael Yale, a senior in journalism. Yale has been blind since age five, when some lye exploded in his face. His is typical of the almost normal life that blind students now lead.
Last December Yale took part in the mass sit-in at Sproul Hall. He only left before police arrested him because a sighted friend wanted to leave, too. Yale is planning a six month tour of Europe starting this summer and then thinks he may enroll in law school.
Like other blind students at U.C. Yale admires the eminent political science professor. Jacobus tenBroek, an expert on constitutional and international law. Dr. tenBroek is blind.
The professor has been actively helping blind students for years, but he is in need of help. A fund that in previous years provided needed equipment for studying has evaporated. There also is a need for volunteer readers.
tenBroek noted that one visiting economist from Australia, Dr. Arnold Cook, has been in need of readers. Cook, who is blind, doesn't qualify for state aid because he has not resided here for 12 months. And readers cost upward from $1.25 an hour.
U. C. , besides making the shack available, provides a brief service at registration time for blind students. Some science courses were closed to blind students until recently, but efforts by the administration now have opened up almost every field at the university to the sightless students.
The students learn their way around the campus, with the aid of other blind students, in about two weeks. They memorize landmarks, such as walls and curbs.
Their grades generally are good, because of regular study habits, made necessary by having to make use of available readers. They have to study about twice as long as students who can see, Yale estimates.
"You can read 15 to 20 pages of an average textbook in an hour," he says. "The same rate applies to reading in Braille."
Braille requires bulky books. The dictionary is 35 volumes in Braille.
Blind students still face employment problems. One student with a teaching credential recently returned to U. C. for graduate work after the Oakland high school system refused to hire him because of his blindness, Yale said.
Yale said San Francisco and Los Angeles school systems also have restrictions against hiring blind teachers. But there are happier tales of blind graduates, such as Russell Anderson who received his Ph.D. degree in social welfare here last June and since has joined the faculty at Columbia University.
The students recently had to take turns using the 10 ragged rooms made available to them. Sometimes, they have to sit on the floor, for lack of furniture. The decor is limited to a calendar in Braille, in the neglected hallway.
But protests by the blind students are muted, and they remain hopeful. They have been promised a special wing in the new undergraduate library, planned near their shack.
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The remarkable flying skills of the bat, which travels at high speeds in caves and forests despite being blind, have been put to work to aid the travel of sightless human beings, according to a memorandum from the Kentucky Bureau of Rehabilitation Services published in THE BRAILLE CARDINAL (January, 1965).
Aware that the bat is blind, both scientists and laymen have long puzzled about the creature's uncanny ability to fly among trees in dead of night and to travel at high speed through the underground labyrinths of our largest caves. Among the many theories which have evolved to explain this phenomenon, one held that the bat has a peculiar skin sensitivity enabling it to feel the heat radiated from tree branches or from the walls of caves. Others have thought that these flying rodents guided their
flight through the use of some kind of magnetic detection of obstacles.
Now, through a series of ingenious experiments, a group of British have assertedly proved that the bat employs inaudible sounds to produce echoes which it alone can hear. These echoes allow the bat to judge the size of the cave it is in, to estimate the distance to the nearest wall, or to locate an open space where it will be safe to fly. In fact, the article points out, the ultrasonic echo system of the bat is so highly developed that it can perform such incredible feats as intercepting its prey in flight.
"If bats, which are blind, can use this echo method to guide their flight, why shouldn't people who are blind do the same thing?" This question occurred to Dr. Leslie Kay, head of the science department of Lancaster College, Coventry, England. For five years, Dr. Kay is said to have worked to devise an ultrasonic system for use by blind persons which includes all that he has learned from his studies of the bat. The result of Dr. Kay's work is the ultrasonic travel aid for the blind.
This aid detects echoes from ultrasonic radiation and converts them into audible sounds which the blind traveller can hear and interpret in terms of information about his environment. Use of the equipment should enable the blind person traveling in the city to detect and avoid bicycles, garbage cans or other obstructions on the sidewalk. It is expected to enable the traveler in a rural environment to follow a path and to avoid encounters with trees and bushes.
The ultrasonic aid has reportedly been successfully tested in England, and is now out of the laboratory and commercially available to the blind. The Kentucky Bureau adds that a few of its own clients will begin training early this year in the technique, with approximately six months expected to be necessary to complete training.
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Iowa City, Iowa Feb. 22, 1965
To the Editor:
There is some disagreement concerning the efficacy of a measure which would permit a blind person to travel by airplane with someone as a guide for a single fare. The principal argument advanced by proponents of such a bill is based on "an understanding of economic need."
I am currently studying at the University of Iowa, and, as a college student, I am well aware of the exigencies of economic need. The problems of living on a limited budget are admittedly formidable. However, these considerations do not justify the support of measures which request a privileged status.
Recently, when I had occasion to travel by train, the restrictive effect of "two-for-one laws" became a definite personal problem. When I attempted to buy a ticket, the clerk insisted on an explanation of my motives for traveling without a guide. Later, after I had purchased a ticket and boarded the train, the conductor also felt compelled to ask why I had come without a guide.
Therefore, I believe that a measure allowing blind people to travel by plane with someone as a guide for a single fare would serve to stultify our progress in the destruction of stereotypes regarding the blind.
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The blind of Wyoming have scored a legislative victory in obtaining an absolute preference for the blind to vending stands located in state, county and city buildings. The bill was proposed at a 1964 board meeting of the Wyoming Association. It was discussed with NFB President Russell Kletzing in October during his attendance at a water convention in Cheyenne. Later, the Federation drafted a bill to accomplish the purpose.
The new Wyoming Act, HB 137, provides that blind persons "shall have an absolute preference to operate vending stands, snack bars, and cafeterias in any building owned or occupied by the state or by any county or city for the vending of articles or food." It should be noted that the new law authorizes the establishment of snack bars and cafeterias as well as vending stands, thus offering an opportunity for more varieties of profitable enterprise.
The act also authorizes any city or county of the state to construct or allow the construction of a vending stand, snack bar, or cafeteria to be operated by a blind person. The rights of those who are not blind but who are operating facilities of the type covered by the act are protected during the time they operate such facilities, but when they decide to give them up a blind applicant can obtain the stand if he pays for the equipment that was being used in the operation,
John Eckhardt and the Wyoming Association of the Blind are very much to be commended on the passage of this measure. It promises to open up new opportunities for blind people in this sparsely populated state. We understand that they received full cooperation from Smyth Shumway, who heads Services for the Blind in Wyoming, in bringing this legislation about.
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By David Soyer
(Editor's note: The following article, by the director of the Social Service Department at the Jewish Guild for the Blind in New York City, reflects an awareness of the rights and needs of welfare clients which will be familiar to Federationists -- and to readers of Hope Defered -- but is less familiar to readers of professional welfare journals. Mr. Soyer's paper, reproduced here in substantially condensed form, is available in its entirety from the Jewish Guild, 1880 Broadway, New York City. It is reprinted, with permission of the National Association of Social Workers, from SOCIAL WORK, Vol. 8, No. 3, July 1963, pp. 72 - 78.
The right of self-determination is a most precious casework axiom; yet the self-chosen goals of clients often seem unrealistic, and case-workers must always stand for reality. This author maintains that the principle of self-determination is frequently violated in the name of good diagnosis and representing reality. Social workers often discourage rather than enable, and sometimes we belie our strong basic faith in the worth and ability of human beings by grinding down the aspirations of our clients. While this paper is directed to caseworkers, the same points might be raised with vocational counselors, psychologists, and others in the helping professions.
The dangers are more acute, or at least more obvious, in some agencies than in others. This is true for two reasons. First, there are those agencies that have some actual control over their clients. A boy in institutional placement simply cannot apply to a special high school unless his social worker arranges for him to do so. Similarly, a person with a disability may get nowhere without the backing of a state or voluntary agency. In the writer's experience, workers in such agencies are
constantly being faced with clients who have "unrealistic goals," and these workers are in a much more powerful position to affect their client's aspirations than are their colleagues in a family agency who work with a "freer" population, (Not to imply that the latter workers are more virtuous; they may discourage their clients in more subtle ways.)
Second, certain agencies serve individuals whose aspirations, although healthy for our culture, may be completely impossible of fulfillment because of the individual's physical or environmental circumstances. This is true of persons with disabilities, minority group members, ex-prisoners, and so on. Sometimes the impossibility results from factors intrinsic to the individual and the chosen goal (for instance, a blind person cannot be a baseball star); often it is prejudice or ignorance in the community.
For both these reasons, workers in an agency such as the Jewish Guild for the Blind must be acutely attuned not only to the aspirations of their clients but even more to their own reactions to these strivings.
The Guild is a multi-functional, non-sectarian, specialized agency. Among agencies for the blind, it was a pioneer in introducing professional casework, group work, and vocational counseling,!
The writer has seen a number of clients with multiple physical and peronality disabilities in whom the validity of their strivings was one of the few "normal" things about them. The case of Mr. A, is an example:
Mr. A, age twenty-eight, came to the Guild after having been to several other agencies for the handicapped. He is a serious visaged, balding young man, fat around the middle (due to the Lawrence-Biedl Moon syndrome), with a peculiarly stooped and stiff-legged gait. His speech is halting and tentative because of his starting a sentence, stopping before completing the thought, going back, jumping to a new idea, and so on. He says "wabbit" for "rabbit." His general appearance and manner are such that once when he sought a furnished room, the landlady opened the door and shrieked, "Get out of here, you creep." Mr. A sees hand movements in one eye and has 10/200 vision with best correction in the other. He travels with a cane. Psychological tests reveal normal intelligence.
Mr. A is hostile, at tinaes feeling persecuted. His pattern is to ask the worker for help, be unable to accept the help in the way the worker can give it, and then turn on the worker, complaining that that nobody wants to help him anyway and that all these agencies and workers are a "waste of the public's money." He has wanted to be a mechanic or a TV repairman, which considering the marginal work he does in the Guild sheltered shop, seems unrealistic. It is felt that Mr. A's character structure is primitive, with many anal and oral traits and a great deal of conflict about dependency. Denial, projection, and displacement are seen as major defense mechanisms. The displacement seems to grow from an intense rage and a feeling of frustration at least partially caused by his limited opportunities. It is felt that Mr. A needs his defenses, despite their rigidity. A real look at himself might be intolerable.
Despite all this, Mr. A would like to get somewhere. The idea of spending the next forty years in a sheltered workshop earning minimal wages is as painful to him as it would be to any young man. His aspirations and desire to be productive are among his few strengths.
The principle of self-determination is basic to casework. Hamilton states:
According to professional ethics, he (the worker) must learn to accept others as distinct personalities, with their own right to self-realization and self- determination.
. . . how much harder to see that each individual must make his own solution, not in the sense that he is master of his fate and captain of his soul in a reckless
defiance of external reality, but because his goals and life objectives are unique for him.
That a client has a right to be himself, to make his own decisions, to use his own abilities and resources, and to work out his own problems is an extension of the deeply rooted casework belief in self-help.
Perlman refers to:
. . . the democratic tenet that each individual has the right to self-determination: within the limits of reality-each man has the right to be master of his soul and of
Wright, a psychologist, uses the expression "the Principle of Co-management, “ which seems to have elements of the same meaning. 4
The blind and visually handicapped individual has as much right as the sighted person to self-determination, to affirm his need for social services, to state whether
he wants to be visited in his home and to terminate his relationship with the social service department with a resulting closing of his case; with a decision, that is, to
be or not to be a client.
This is stressed because blind people traditionally were denied this right in some agencies, and they still are. Chevigny blasts this practice, although there has been much improvement since he first wrote about it.
Even in the definitions of self-determination, the word "reality" appears. Caseworkers must always represent reality to their clients, and the literature stresses the importance of realistic goals, with the assessment of what is realistic being based on sound diagnosis. Barker refers to:
. . . The problem of getting the disabled to give up impossible hopes; under the pressure of very central needs disabled persons are prone to cling to unrealistic behavior aspirations long after these have become impossible. . . . The disabled person must know what he is up against. This involves knowing the areas in which opportunities lie as well as those from which he is excluded. . . (but) an attitude of resignation and acceptance of meagre goals . . , should be avoided at all means. For almost every disabled person there are richly satisfying goal hierarchies which he can pursue and within which he can achieve great and lasting satisfactions.
Wright sees as the main theme of her book the fact that ". . . acceptance of a disability requires basic changes in values so that new and reachable goals become meaningful."
It is important to differentiate between individuals in terms of expectation; in other words to gear the level of expectation to the individual's capacity to function.
How are these two sound principles -- the right to self-determination and the representing of reality -- brought to bear by the caseworker upon the client's aspirations? The client might mention a striving that seems farfetched. The worker's response is usually muffled in the cliche "Worker raised question regarding this, in terms of . . ." What this often means is that the worker raised every conceivable objection in an effort to discourage the client.
Suppose the client is a youngster in an institution and that he wants to go to a high school specializing in art for which there is an entrance examination. The conscientious worker will do a careful study, have psychological tests done, and perhaps refer the boy to a vocational counselor. Depending on what the study shows, the client may gently be told that there are many fields allied to art, such as sign painting, that he might consider; or it might be suggested that he is really college material and that he can always pursue art as a hobby. The impossibility of earning a living as a fine artist would be stressed. Should the youngster persist against the worker's persuasiveness, the worker then might arrange for him to take the examination. However, other workers would reason that the client would be deeply hurt by the probable failure, and would not make the arrangement. In such a case, reality and self-determination have met head on, and the former has won.
The writer has known a number of professional fine artists who probably never had counseling of any kind. Several never finished high school. They may have been college material, but their interests were so one-sided, even obsessive, that art school was all they would or could consider. They even risked failure and the chance of not earning a living. Might not a caseworker or vocational counselor have questioned their lofty aspirations? They would have made sad sign painters or un-
Within our client populations there are those who for all their lives have been deprived, yet over protected. They include many disabled and institutionalized individuals, and perhaps others, too. They have forever bornewith a host of caseworkers, counselors, advisers, and other predigesters of the facts of life. Certainly, one of their deprivations is that they have never had the adventure of putting to the test of reality their adolescent "dreams of glory" without first having soberly looked at the pros and cons with a social worker.
Challenge to Aspirations
Blind people, especially, seem to be subjected to an intense challenge of their aspirations. Often more than one agency is involved in the process. By the time a vocational or educational goal is considered feasible, the person may consider himself so committed, and feel as if he has already had so much invested in him, that he dare not fail. He may also have had stressed to him that as a blind person he is serving as a trail blazer or an example and he had better make a good showing, much
the way Jackie Robinson was asked to serve as an example when he became the first Negro in organized baseball. Even the blind individual whose aspirations (albeit tested, challenged, and modified by case-workers and counselors) are being supported by the agencies, has lost some freedoms, including the freedoms to explore goals in a relaxed and in-formal way and to fail and learn through the failure.
Before looking at two reasons for backing the client's aspirations, despite apparent divergences from the realistic, the following case is presented:
Miss C weighs fifty pounds. She is twenty-one years old. Her diminutiveness and drawn and aged appearance are due to rheumatoid arthritis. She has had no puberty. Her vision began to fail in early childhood and she was totally blind by age sixteen. Being too light for a dog and afraid of using a cane. Miss C does not self-travel. She is a high school graduate and has been to a number of agencies and rehabilitation centers. Throughout the reports from other agencies is a running theme of Miss C's wanting to go to college (her goal: social work), of this being considered an unrealistic goal for the present, and of her "accepting" the need to postpone this plan to take up transcription typing as a possible career. Several such rehabilitation plans were started, but each time Miss C became ill and had to stop. . . .
As Miss C felt the caseworker's acceptance of her as an adult and his acceptance of the validity of her own aspirations, a tremendous spurt of movement was seen. She began again to discuss going to college and, as a trial of her capacities, took two summer courses. The caseworker made every effort to abet this plan. For the first time in her life. Miss C felt she was playing a part in her own planning. She made most of the arrangements for registration entirely on her own, although the Guild supplied guides and readers. She is now taking two additional courses and has enjoyed school tremendously.
The gains have been great. Miss C shows much more tolerance for frustation and her characteristic pessimism has been tempered. She has reached a more mature understanding of her relationships, including that with her mother, and is truly beginning to think of herself as an adult. She speaks of having faith in herself that she never had before. At this point, Miss C is requesting cane travel instruction and is thinking of applying for full-time college attendance.
The Client's Aspirations
There are two reasons for supporting the self-determined aspirations of the client, even when they may seem farfetched. The first reason is simple: the client might be right, the worker wrong. The diagnostic tools are not so exact that a worker can always judge a person's capacity.
The second reason for backing the client's aspirations is that only through life itself can the client really try, test, and temper his abilities, his fantasies, and his goals. No amount of talking about "heads" and "walls," or testing the comparative strengths of heads and walls will have as real an impact on the client as his banging his actual head against a real wall. This is how all people grow; how they gain a more mature view of themselves and the world. They succeed and fail, and through success and failure they learn. In the case of Miss C, the goals may be unrealistic and adolescent fantasy. However, only through real life experience will she know whether she can reach them, and only through such experience will she modify and adjust this fantasy. If she is counseled out of trying the aspirations may only go underground, and she will be left not only with her supposedly unrealistic fantasy but also with a bitter feeling that she was talked out of something in which she might have succeeded had she been allowed to try. For this particular client group the need for real experience is most important, particularly since they have often experienced a large amount of casework and counseling and have often been sheltered from much of life.
This does not negate the role of the caseworker or the counselor. Rather than prejudging the validity of the client's aspirations, the worker first attempts to help the client identify his strivings; then he works toward enabling the client to reach toward his goal; he helps the client to understand and integrate the experiences he is having in pursuit of the goal; and, finally, he may help the client to formulate and identify new or modified (upward or downward) aspirations. In the case of Miss C, this has led, so far, to a much more profound level of casework treatment than would have been possible if the worker had not respected the client's right to choose goals for herself.
Attitudes of Workers
Why do caseworkers sometimes dampen rather than fire the aspirations of their clients? Since this could be the topic of another paper, three possible reasons will be presented only briefly.
1) In spite of his professional orientation and self-awareness, the worker may be infected unconsciously with some of the general attitudes toward the disabled (and other disadvantaged client groups) that, behind clucks of pity, tend to derogate the disabled individual and prejudge him as totally incompetent. The literature contains many discussions of such attitudes.13 It is doubtful that among competent professional workers these attitudes exist in their gross forms. However, they may linger in subtle ways. For instance, one might expect professional social workers to be among the first to try to break through the employment barrier for persons with disabilities. Yet how many voluntary, non-specialized agencies have hired blind social workers or transcription typists?
2) Workers may want to save their clients from the pain of failure. Every sensitive parent has experienced the torture of watching his young child battle with some comparatively easy task. But because we respect his need to learn and because we may be pushed away by a determined, "Me do!" we often allow him to continue struggling, despite the impulse to protect him from frustration Perhaps this same protective feeling prevents us from heeding the client's version of "Me do!" This is a kind of counter-transference that calls for increased self-awareness.
3) Perhaps social work attracts cautious, risk-avoiding people. There is evidence of this in the way in which we treat our own workers, often preventing them, through close and overly extensive supervision, from fully developing and taking responsibility for their own ideas and methods. Our stress on "planfulness" and our careful assessment of positives and negatives before taking a step may also reflect a basic conservatism.
This is a call for more daring on the part of caseworkers, including a greater alliance with the aspirations of clients, even when these seem beyond the reach of the client and contain the risk of failure. The right of self-determination includes the right to fail and it is the life experience itself, with its success, failure, and inbetween, that really enables the client to evaluate himself, and in the end, set his goals realistically. The caseworker can help with the evaluation and integration of this experience. While discussion has been based on the client group of a specialized agency and rather extreme examples have been presented, it is believed that the points raised are pertinent to much of social work.
When some of these ideas were discussed with Miss C, she quoted to the worker these familiar lines from Andrea del Sarto, by Browning:
"... Ah, but a man 's reach should exceed his grasp, Or what's a Heaven for?"
1. For discussion of the role of casework in agencies specializing in work with blind persons, see Elizabeth M. Maloney, "The Special Contribution of the Social Caseworker in an Agency for the Blind" The New Outlook for the Blind, Vol. 46, No, 9 (November 1952); Maloney, "Social Casework Approach to the Visually Handicapped Client, " The New Outlook for the Blind, Vol. 50, No. 4 (April 1956); and Florence C. Starr, "The Role of the Social Service Department in an Agency for the Blind, " The Jewish Social Service Quarterly, Vol. 29, No. 2 (Winter 1952)
2. Gordon Hamilton, Theory and Practice of Social Case Work (2d Ed., revised; New York: Columbia University Press, 1951), pp. 40, 41, and 44.
3. Helen Harris Perlman, Social Casework: A Problem-solving Process (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1957), p. 60.
4. Beatrice A. Wright, Physical Disability -- A Psychological Approach (New York: Harper & Brothers, I960), p. 345.
5. Starr, op. cit. , p. 222
6. Hector Chevigny, My Eyes Have a Cold Nose (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1946), p. 101 ff.
7. Roger C. Barker, "The Social Psychology of Physical Disability, " Journal of Social Issues, Vol. 4, No. 4 (Fall 1948), p. 37.
8. Wright, op. cit. , p. 338
9. Fern Lowry, "Basic Assumptions Underlying Casework with Blind Person," in Samuel Finestone, ed., Social Casework and Blindness (New York: American Foundation for the Blind, 1960), pp. 16-17.
13. For discussion of these attitudes see Sydell Braverman, "The Psychological Roots of Attitudes Toward the Blind," The New Outlook for the Blind, Vol. 45, No. 6 (June 1951); Chevigny, op. cit.
(attitudes are described and discussed throughout the book); Thomas Di Cutsforth, "Personality Crippling Through Physical Disability," Journal of Social Issues, Vol. 4, No. 4 (Fall 1958); Irving Lukoff, "A Sociological Appraisal of Blindness, " in Finestone, op. cit.; and Wright, op. cit., especially Chapter 2.
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Editor, Braille Monitor
I have been approached by Mr. Richard L. Crane of Newport, Rhode Island, concerning the idea of a postage stamp, commemorating the achievements of the blind in the U. S.
Mr. Crane is a member of the R. I. Council of the Blind, an ACB affiliate. I am a member of the Worcester, Mass., chapter of the Associated Blind of Mass. , an NFB affiliate.
Mr. Crane feels that if such things as physical fitness and poultry are now depicted, why not have a stamp honoring U. S. blind?
I am aware of its ramifications, but I believe the plan has merit. First, we must consider precedent, which may be good or bad. Secondly, this stamp idea can work for the common good of blind Americans.
I have discussed the idea in letters to Anita O'Shea, of the NFB executive committee among others. Mr. Crane also has written to others, including Manuel Rubin, ABM president.
There will be many more letters, as time permits, at this early stage of research. Right now, we need national publicity.
The stamps should be of a simple design, and perhaps have a motto, of not more than three Latin words. The United States Post Office Department will be the final authority.
We shall need, and greatly appreciate, any help we may get. Would you kindly publicize our effort, in a subsequent issue of the BRAILLE MONITOR?
Looking forward to your reply, I am
Edward B. Murphy
2 Clarendon Street
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More than 750 blind persons in England and Wales are at work in professional, technical, administrative, executive and managerial forms of employment, according to a survey described in THE NEW BEACON (January, 1965),
Based on replies from 41Z persons in the total group, the British survey selected several careers for deeper study, including osteopathy. The findings for each of these callings are summarized below.
The significant development in the field of osteopathy is the recent decision by the British School of Osteopathy (the main examining body) that blind candidates may now be considered on their individual merits -- a reversal of the School's earlier position that osteopathy was not "a suitable profession" for the blind.
In England and Wales there are presently five blind osteopaths, three of them partially sighted and two who were fully trained after becoming totally blind. All five are now qualified and registered as osteopaths, with successful practices. It was on the basis of a study of their careers that the School of Osteopathy was persuaded to abandon its exclusion policy with regard to blind applicants.
Between the wars numbers of blind persons entered this profession, many after first qualifying as physiotherapists. Osteopathy reportedly bears some resemblance to physiotherapy in its treatment methods, but the osteopath is additionally responsible for diagnosis. It is felt that the most suitable candidates are likely to be already qualified in physiotherapy, which gives them the additional advantage of making a living in an allied field while establishing their practice as osteopaths.
In the larger occupational groups studies in the British survey, where specialized training methods and placement facilities are available, it was found that most blind persons had become established in their careers after losing their sight. Physiotherapy, the largest group of all, with 122 replies to the questionnaire, has only one practitioner who was at work in the field before loss of sight.
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By Charles R. Hulac
(Editor's note: Mr. Hulac is a vice president of the American Friends of the Middle East, Inc. His article is reprinted from the AFME's journal, VIEWPOINTS, January, 1965).
The story of a man overcoming a physical handicap has acquired a some what commonplace acceptance for most of us. But in many other areas of the world a triumph of this nature still commands the reverence and awe of all. Success is determined by a man's ability to overcome the adversity which daily afflicts him and by his ability to put his surroundings to work for him. Saudi Arabia provides the setting for the story of a man who has successfully met these physical environmental challenges so to guide others along the unseeable paths he himself has followed.
Sheikh Abdullah el-Ghanem is the Director of Special Education within the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Education. Now only 29 years old, Sheikh Abdullah is a graduate of the Islamic University in Riyadh where he earned a degree in Islamic jurisprudence (Shari'a). His department in the Ministry is responsible for the education of the handicapped subjects of the Kingdom. Operating on an annual budget of four million Saudi riyals (roughly $1 million U. S.), he has succeeded in organising four schools and training centers for the blind in the larger cities of Saudi Arabia. In December two additional new centers were opened: one for
blind girls in Riyadh, the administrative capital, and a second center for the training of deaf mutes.
These accomplishments take on a new aura when one realizes that as a result of smallpox at the age of six. Sheikh Abdullah has been blind for 23 years. He is self-educated in English and uses Braille in English and Arabic equally well. Six years ago he undertook to learn the use of the standard non-Braille typewriter in both languages. When asked whether he has had any trouble securing sufficient financial backing for his burgeoning program, which today provides a specialized training for 600 blind Saudis, he says simply, "The Government and the Ministry are prepared to increase my budget as necessary to do the job." It was not always so.
Once he had acquired typing skills, he decided to challenge the authorities in Riyadh with the idea that the handicapped have talents which would be useful to the country. He went to the head of the Riyadh municipality and asked for assistance in setting up a small center for the blind. At the outset he encountered amused skepticism, but when he volunteered to man the mayor's English typewriter, and did so with errorless success, he was given permission to begin his work on a modest scale. With the mayor's backing he was able to raise 7,000 Saudi riyals from private sources for the first year of operation. Four years ago, after two years
of careful planning and development, he was able with King Saud's sponsorship to put on a demonstration of the accomplishments and manufactures of his first group of trainees. The reaction was so enthusiastic that the Ministry of Education from that time on has provided constantly increasing support to match Sheikh Abdullah's expanding talents and drive and to cope with the needs of a sizeable group of handicapped Saudis.
In the Riyadh center where Sheikh Abdullah maintains his office, a craft training center has been established. Here his students have turned out wrought iron furniture, brooms, baskets, brushes, woven rugs and a number of other household items. This center has its own Braille printing operation in addition to a bindery where the books used throughout the schools are put together. When the Braille duplicating machine which was to be used to prepare examinations failed to arrive from abroad, resourceful Sheikh Abdullah and his assistants secured and modified a used Speed Queen washing machine to take its place. Exams are now punched out on special zinc master sheets, after which the zinc plates are put with sheets of heavy manila paper and run through the wringer of the washer to produce the sharp copies required.
The stamp of do-it-yourself ingenuity is borne by all of his department's undertakings. Endowed with a delightful sense of humor and able to discuss his handicap in a most objective manner. Sheikh Abdullah describes his activities thusly, "My lights have gone out, but I can nevertheless enjoy bringing light to the blind of Saudi Arabia."
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For the second time in the past two years, NFB President Russell Kletzing has been honored for his legal work with the Department of Water Resources of the State of California. At an awards dinner recently, he was presented with his department's "Meritorious Service Award" for his outstanding work in contract negotiation and drafting. The text of the award reads: "In recognition and appreciation of a special contribution made in the negotiation and signing of the water supply contracts and
the amended contracts, a vital phase of the California State Water Project.
Kletzing is employed as assistant Chief Counsel in the State Water Department. He and the attorneys whom he supervises carry on the contracting program for the sale of water and power developed by the State Water Project, the largest water project ever to be constructed by man. The contracts for furnishing water throughout California, for which Kletzing's work was particularly cited, involves the repayment of more than five billion dollars to the state. The project consists of dams and
canals which will stop devastating winter floods and hold the water for use during the rainless California summers to irrigate crops and supply parched cities. The entire system transports water for distances up to 500 miles.
Approximately two years ago, Kletzing received an Award for Superior Accomplishment with the State of California, in recognition of his negotiation and drafting of important water contracts between the state and the federal government.
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Prospects for legislation protecting blind operators of vending stands in Massachusetts have been improved as a result of committee hearings on a new bill sponsored by the Associated Blind of Massachusetts and the state's Division for the Blind.
The bill, introduced in the state House of Representatives by Representative Spartichino of Cambridge, was vigorously supported in the hearings by Charles Little, representing the ABM, and by blind persons who appeared from all parts of the state, as well as by Division for the Blind Director John Mungovan.
The proposed measure seeks in positive terms both to facilitate expansion of blind-operated stands in state buildings and to assure that stand operators receive the proceeds from automatic vending machines in the vicinity.
The bill requires building authorities to give preference to blind persons in establishment of stands, to cooperate with the Division for the Blind in its surveys aimed at finding locations for vending stands, "(to) cooperate with the Division in the installation of such vending stand."
Regarding the problem of vending machine competition, the bill requires the same authorities to Arrange for the assignment of the income derived from vending machines located within reasonable proximity to and in direct competition with a vending stand ... to the vending stand operator." Still more specifically, the measure states: "If a vending machine vends articles of a type authorized for vending pursuant to this act, and is so located that it attracts customers who would otherwise
patronize the vending stand, such machine will be considered to be in reasonable proximity to and in direct competition with the vending stand."
In his testimony before the House Public Welfare Committee, Little pointed out that the state licensing agency had established only 32vending stands in all state- owned public buildings despite evidence of demonstrated need and opportunity for many more.
Others testifying on behalf of the legislation included Father Thomas J. Carroll, head of the Catholic Guild for the Blind (whose testimony was submitted in writing), and Dr. Edward J. Waterhouse of the Perkins School for the Blind.
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College students who enter graduate training for professional careers in vocational rehabilitation counseling can receive significant financial aid during their studies according to a recent announcement by the Vocational Rehabilitation Administration. These careers are dedicated to helping disabled people overcome their physical or mental disabilities and prepare for employment.
The aid for this training comes from the Vocational Rehabilitation Administration in the U. S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, which administers the State-Federal program for rehabilitating disabled people into employment.
The VRA offers traineeships for graduate study leading to a Master's or Doctor's degree in this field. Stipends of $1,800 to $3,400 annually are awarded for living and other expenses. In addition, tuition is also paid by the Federal government.
Selection of trainees rests with almost 40 colleges and universities participating in the VRA counselor training program. These schools receive the training grants and make the actual awards to qualified students. At present the awards are limited to two years of study in any one specialized course.
The name of institutions participating in the VRA counselor training program may be obtained from the Division of Training, Vocational Rehabilitation Administration, U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, Washington, D. C. 20201.
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State Comissioner of Health and Welfare James J, Barry was the target last month of a sweeping critical attack launched by the New Hampshire Federation of the Blind. The charges were set forth in an open letter to the state's Advisory Commission on Health and Welfare from Franklin Van Vliet, President of the NHFB.
VanVliet declared that, contrary to his public statements, the commissioner "has neither treated the members of the Blind Services Unit of his department with respect nor given the problems of the blind the constant attention and concern they deserve and require."
Barry was said to have placed in the Blind Services unit "persons who are not qualified or trained to serve in the specialized professional capacities necessary to such work; and he has blocked the staff from availing themselves of in-service training opportunities under the Vocational Rehabilitation Program for which funds have already been appropriated."
The letter noted that Commissioner Barry had sought to enlist the support of the blind in 1961 by creating an Advisory Committee on the Blind, "with considerable publicity and fanfare," expressly in order "to improve existing programs and to implement specific recommendations made by the National Federation of the Blind at the request of our then governor. These recommendations covered many items including techniques for the education of blind children, the vocational rehabilitation
of blind adults and the handling of public assistance for the blind generally."
But VanVliet pointed out that "nevertheless this committee has now been allowed to fall into disuse--it has not been convened since the fall of 1963 -- and the programs and other recommendations of the National Federation have been studiously ignored."
The New Hampshire blind leader charged further that, despite a ruling of the attorney general that the State House snack bar is subject to federal regulations requiring payment of its net proceeds to the operator, "nevertheless Mr. Barry has caused its present operator to be paid a fixed salary. Not only is this contrary to such regulations but it defeats the very purpose of the stand program which seeks to rehabilitate and dignify the operators of such stands by recognizing the independence of their business operations."
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Striking advances on several welfare fronts -- including the complete elimination of relatives' responsibility -- have been posted by the organized blind of Indiana during the current legislative session.
Close teamwork between the Indiana Council of the Blind and the state Association of Workers for the Blind is credited by Ray Dinsmore, veteran leader of the ICB, for the passage of a number of significant bills and their subsequent approval by the Governor.
S. 33 created an eleven man advisory committee to the Indiana Agency for the Blind and required representation of the organized blind. The appointees are to be selected from the following fields of endeavor: one each from industrial research and development; rehabilitation; community planning; social service; medical profession; the optometric profession; sales and distribution; a selectee recommended by the Association of Workers for the Blind; and a selectee recommended by the Indiana Council for the Blind. Two persons shall be selected from the field of industrial production. In addition the budget of the Indiana Agency for the
Blind was substantially increased allowing for increased wages, new machinery and many other improvements.
S. 138 grants a $2,000 exemption to blind persons who own real property. This is an increase from the $1,000 exemption previously allowed. The blind had asked for $3,000 but the amount was lowered in committee. The exemption applies only to real property "used and occupied exclusively for his residence" for the blind persons residence and only if the blind person's "gross income from all sources was not in excess of $2,500."
S. 139 lowers the residence requirement for blind assistance from the previously required three years to one year. The blind had wanted to wipe it out altogether but had to settle for the one year requirment.
Indiana has a lien law providing that the state may recover all amounts of public assistance from the estate of any blind person with the exception that the lien may not be enforced against property occupied by the surviving spouse or dependent children. S. 140 provides that no such lien can be filed against the estate or other assets of any blind person who has been off the roles for more than five years. Previously there was no such limitation. The bill also provides that no interest shall be charged; previously there had been a three per cent interest charge. There is a new state minimum-wage law denying exemption to the state agency for the blind, thus assuring a minimum wage scale to sightless workers in the state-operated sheltered shop.
The most important break-through of all was achieved with the passage of a measure (S-141) eliminating the requirement of relatives' responsibility for the support of blind Indianans receiving public assistance.
The state legislature also reportedly passed an enabling act to implement the federal provision allowing a 36-month period during which all resources of a blind person with a bona fide plan for self-support maybe disregarded.
Hardly less significant that these concrete gains was the success of the Indiana Council in persuading State Welfare Commissioner--Albert Kelly not to join other states in pressing for enactment of the notorious "title XVI" -- which would merge welfare programs for the blind with those of the aged and disabled, to the detriment of distinctive services for the needy blind.
Commissioner Kelly also lent his support to the other measures favored by the Indiana Council of the Blind, which were voted into law with the substantial majorities in both houses, according to Dinsmore. He spoke for the residence reduction and allowed the blind to say that he was not opposed to the other measures. This agreement was achieved before the legislative session began.
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Two new bills aiding the blind and physically handicapped -- one geared to vending stands and the other to construction of public buildings -- have been introduced into the New Mexico legislature as a result of active spadework by the state Federation of the Blind under the leadership of President Pauline Gomez.
The vending stand measure makes it a mandatory requirement that "the head or governing body of each department or agency and of each county or municipality or other local governmental entity" assure that blind persons be given a preference in establishment of vending stands and cooperate with the division for the blind in its efforts to create new stand installations.
Moreover, the bill adds this significant reinforcement of the law's intent: "If, after the requisite determinations have been made . . . and a permit has been requested in writing, the head or governing body of the entity having control over the state property refuses to issue the permit, the division through the department of public welfare may bring an action of mandamus to enforce compliance with the provisions of this section."
The other New Mexico bill, seeking "to establish standards to make public buildings accessible to persons who are physically handicapped, "directs the state contractors' license board to issue orders prescribing prescribing additional specifications for any new public buildings bringing them into conformity with the official booklet entitled "American Standard Specifications for Making Buildings and Facilities Accessible To, and Usable by, the Physically Handicapped."
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A move to merge Ohio's program of aid to the blind with those for the aged and the disabled under federal title XVI is expected to be made by the state welfare director in the present session of the legislature, according to a report from Clyde Ross, public relations chairman of the Ohio Council of the Blind.
The requirement under title XVI of common standards of assistance and common eligibility requirements for all three aided categories would hit blind recipients in the state with particular severity, it was pointed out. Ohio's nearly 3,500 recipients of aid to the blind received last year an average monthly payment of $69.95, while the more than 85,000 recipients of old age assistance drew an average grant of $65.11 -- indicating a probable reduction of around four dollars per month on the part of blind persons receiving aid if the proposed measure is enacted.
Other onerous features of the old-age program -- notably the imposition of lien and recovery provisions from which blind recipients have been free -- would almost certainly be imposed upon blind Ohioans in the event of conversion of the catch-all title XVI, it was said.
A counter-campaign to defeat the threatened legislative move is being organized by the Ohio Council with the assistance of the National Federation of the Blind. A probable ally in the fight will be the state's Lions Clubs, whose Council of Governors has indicated sympathetic interest in the problem as presented by the organized blind of the state.
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Twelve representatives of the Maryland Council of the Blind drove to the state capital at Annapolis on March 1 to present the Council's case for early establishment of a state orientation center for the blind, according to information received from William Appel, Council president.
In meetings arranged by Miss Lois Parthree, legislative chairman of the MCB, with the assistance of several members of the legislature, the delegation conferred with Governor Tawes and with the chairman of the Ways and Means Committee.
It was pointed out to the state officials that blind persons in Maryland needing rehabilitation must now be sent to Alabama for training and services. As a result of their meetings the Council is confident of the support of both the governor and the influential committee chairman in the current session of the legislature, according to President Appel.
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George Rittgers, veteran Federationist of Kansas City, Missouri, is recovering from serious injuries incurred in an automobile accident March 1. George, who recently completed his term as president of our Missouri Affiliate and his wife Gwen are both long-time active members of the organized blind movement of their state and the nation.
Early on the morning of the accident, while on his way to work, Rittgers disembarked from a bus and was struck by a car driven by a close friend of 15 years. He was taken to Veterans Hospital with a broken hip and serious head injuries. He is expected to remain in the hospital for six weeks, and will remain on crutches for another six to eight months.
A letter received from Gwen Rittgers as we go to press adds these new details:
"George does not remember the first ten days, and I am glad because they were so horrible for him. The doctor says that it was the shock of the accident. Around the clock for twelve days he received blood, glucose, penicillin, antibiotics, and sedatives. They had to give him eleven pints of blood. They took him to surgery on the 8th and inserted a Jewett nail in his hip. He has a heavy cast on the lower part of his leg and foot, but this is for traction and to keep his foot from rotating. The head lacerations are healing, and the black and blue marks all over his body are beginning to clear. Although he is still quite ill, he can now have company, and we can tell each day that he is improving. He has to lie on the flat of his back, so this is a tiresome thing, but his spirits are getting better each day. He says that if only he could be home, he could make it okay. His address is East 803, Veterans Hospital, this city."
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In Berkeley, California, on February 28, at the age of 81, Thomas Hugh Buckingham suddenly died from a heart attack. Hugh was one of the pioneers in the organized blind movement in California, A memorial will be held for him at the State School for the Blind in Berkeley, Sunday afternoon, April 25.
Two all-day seminars to discuss current state legislative proposals for the blind were held recently by the California Council of the Blind -- the first in Los Angeles on March 27 and the other in San Francisco April 3. Both sessions were well-attended, with lively discussion and the dissemination of much legislative information, according to Council President James McGinnis.
The Vocational Rehabilitation Administration has approved grants for six new rehabilitation research and training centers. These grants bring the total number of centers to 14, 10 of which are medically oriented, two in the field of mental retardation and two in vocational settings.
On February 11 in Sacramento, California, A. D. "Tony" Septinelli, administrator of the Business Enterprise program in the Division for the Blind, State Department of Rehabilitation, suffered a fatal heart attack. He was 66, . . . R. L. Melody, supervising Enterprise officer of the southern California area, has been appointed as the new administrator of the California State Vending Stand and Cafeteria Program.
Dr. Arnold Cook, Senior Lecturer in Economics, Faculty of Economics and Commerce, University of Western Australia, Nedlands, Perth, Western Australia, is on a study leave in the United States this year. He is spending the first five months in Berkeley and thereafter will spend short periods of time at the University of Illinois, Princeton, Duke, and others. In Australia, Dr. Cook is president of an organization of business and professional blind.
Rienzi Alagiyawanna of Ceylon, first vice president of the International Federation of the Blind, recently enlisted the aid of the American Embassy and the use of an embassy bus in order to tour the island of Ceylon, telling of advances in work for the blind as he observed them in the United States during his visit last summer. As a result of his efforts -- and in keeping with his goal of compulsory education for every blind child in Ceylon--a new blind school is to be opened on the eastern side
of the island, where no school facilities had previously existed.
Dr. Horst Geissler, vice president of the German Federation of the Blind and one of the founders of the International Federation of the Blind, has been appointed to head the Education Center for the Blind in Marburg. He succeeds Dr. Carl Strehl upon the latter 's retirement. He began his work at the school on March 29. . . . Dr. Frank H. Krusen of Temple University, Philadelphia, plans to establish a school of physical therapy for the blind at the school's medical center, according to the
Montana OBSERVER. Modeled after the British school operated by the Royal National Institute in London, the Temple University facility is expected to be ready for operation by fall of this year.
The American Foundation has requested us to clarify an item in the January BRAILLE MONITOR regarding the new fee of one dollar charged blind persons traveling with a guide by rail or bus. It should be made clear that the one dollar is a once-a-year charge for the coupon books for bus and rail travel issued by the Foundation. Should it be necessary to acquire additional books during the year, there is no further charge.
It is reported by OVR that last year 2, 641 blind people received income from their vending stands which averaged $4, 452 annually. Seven hundred and eight-six of these stands were in federal buildings and the rest in other locations. . . . Robert Stroin, a Harvard University student has suggested that a 9-dot braille cell be used for mathematical and scientific notations. This would make possible a total of 511 combinations rather than the 63 provided by the 6-dot cell of Louis Braille.
An Institute in Mathematics for Teachers of Blind Children will be held at the University of Detroit from June 28 through August 6. The institute is under the sponsorship of the National Science Foundation and directed by Dr. Abraham Nemeth. Scholarships are available which will cover the costs. For applications, write to Dr. Lyle E. Mehlenbacher, Director, Institutes in Mathematics, University of Detroit, Detroit, Michigan 48221.
From St. Paul, Minnesota, comes word that a yound blind man (unnamed) has been successfully trained and employed as a calculator operator. The figures are supplied on a tape recording. . . . Best Selling Books for the Blind, Inc., a non-profit corporation. Box 6852, Towson, Maryland, rents tape recorded books to members. Some 300 titles are said to be available.
The American Foundation for the Blind has issued a provisional bibliography on the subject of "mobility research and mobility instrumentation research," which is expected to be the first of three or four to be published during 1965. . . . The Genesee Federation of the Blind, Inc. , has a position open for a teacher in its Flint, Michigan center. Requirements include ability to teach typing, braille, crafts, mobility, etc. Applications for the $5,000 position (plus fringe benefits) should write to
GFB at 618 Garland Street, Flint, Michigan 48503.
The father of U.S. Attorney General Nicholas deB. Katzenbach was "virtually blind for most of his career," according to the NEW YORK TIMES. The elder Katzenbach was a highly successful corporate lawyer and onetime New Jersey Attorney General. . . . Roger Hotchkiss, 17 of Rockford, Illinois, has designed a set of spectacles which he maintains will enable blind persons to "see with their ears." He says the mirror lenses in the glasses reflect light from objects in front of the wearer to a pair of photoelectric cells protruding before each lens; the cells then transmit warning sound signals to a pair of special ear pieces,
Don Staley, a veteran of 25 years in broadcast work, has been appointed national director of Recording for the Blind, Inc. He succeeds Burnham Carter, who has retired after seven years as executive head of the nonprofit organization. . . . Still another weapon in the battle against blindness may have been found in the high-speed centrifuge, such as that used by astronauts in training. Tests with plastic models are said to indicate that such whirling of a patient may help to settle a detached retina back in place as a part of the repair procedure.
THE OBSERVER, official publication of the NFB's Montana affiliate, reports that Robert Kiesling has been elected as the new president of the Montanans' Yellowstone chapter. . . . The new address of Recordings for the Blind is 215 east 58th Street, New York, New York 10022. . . A directory of eye banks throughout the U.S. is contained in "A Manual for Simple Burial," published by the Celo Press, North Carolina, at one dollar. The booklet includes information on bequeathing eyes to these banks.
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