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
2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708
THE BRAILLE MONITOR
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.
MEDICAL ASSISTANCE UNDER TITLE XIX OF THE SOCIAL SECURITY ACT
By Ellen Winston
NEW MEDICAL CARE PROGRAMS -- A CAUTION
By Lawrence Marcelino
GREENFIELD-ATHOL CHAPTER PROJECT
By Eugene Sibley
PC & E HOME ECONOMIST TEACHES COOKING TO THE BLIND
THE ORGANIZED BLIND OF MASSACHUSETTS CELEBRATE 25th ANNIVERSARY
By John Nagle
BOOKS FOR THE BLIND NOTICE
By Jacob Freid
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE CALIFORNIA COUNCIL OF THE BLIND CONVENTION
By Lawrence Marcelino
COURAGE SUSTAINS BLIND SKATING STAR
By Noel Lieberman
NEW HAMPSHIRE CONVENTION
By Helen Hutchins
NEW PH.D. PROGRAM ON VISUAL HANDICAP
REPRESENTATIVE DENT – CONGRATULATIONS
By Russell Kletzing
By Rogers Smith
A.B.M. HONORS CHARLES LITTLE
LOW VISION READERS
By Joel A. Roth
By James R, Carlock
TWO NEW MEMBERS FOR REHAB ADVISORY COMMITTEE
THE BLIND IN JAPAN
By Kideyuki Iwahashi
TELEPHONE PIONEERS AID BLIND AND HANDICAPPED
By George Bonsky
NEW FREEZING DEVICE HELPS EYE SURGERY
ANOTHER SILVER ANNIVERSARY: THE A. B. M.
MY MEETING WITH PRESIDENT JOHNSON
By John Nagle
RADIO SERIES TELLS SUCCESS STORIES
By Gerold McGill
STANDPOINT - MILLIONS FOR POVERTY, NOTHING FOR THE POOR
NEW JERSEY CONVENTION
U.S. Commissioner of Welfare
(From 3 Welfare in Review 14, August 1965)
UNLIKE THE INSURANCE provisions, the welfare and child health provisions of the "medicare" act cannot materialize into effective programs without essential action by States and localities. The decision about whether and when to develop a medical assistance program under Title XIX, for example, rests with the States and ultimately the communities.
The most important of the groups that could benefit from these provisions, unquestionably, is the children in low income families, and that means one fourth of the children in the United States. Despite the growing emphasis which both the Children's Bureau and the Bureau of Family Services of the Welfare Administration have given to child health over a long period of years, emphasis which has included a number of Federal grants for a broad range of preventive, remedial, and treatment services, the health status of needy children remains a national disgrace.
Among the important ways in which the 1965 amendments attack this problem are the provisions for increasing Federal aid to maternal and child health and crippled children's programs and for special project grants for health services to children of school and preschool age.
Potentially the most far-reaching of all the provisions relating to child health is the authorization to include all medically needy children and young people in the new medical assistance program which is established under Title XIX of the Act. This means that, if States elect to do so, any medically needy child or youth under 21 years of age can receive whatever medical or health care he needs. His family does not need to be dependent on public assistance, or even eligible for such assistance--the family income from earnings may cover all the child's basic daily needs, but if it is not sufficient to meet his medical needs, he can be made eligible for the Title XIX program.
Before a State is ready to adopt this broad a program for its children, however, it must give priority attention to the medical needs of certain children and certain other needy groups whose medical needs are not now being adequately met The first priority must go to persons who are receiving financial assistance under the federally aided public assistance programs: aid to families with dependent children, old-age assistance, aid to the blind, and aid to the disabled. These groups represent the minimum coverage called for under the new program, and, if States want to continue to receive Federal funds for medical care for these recipients of public assistance, they must set up the new medical care program by January 1, 1970. Since States are now spending more than a billion dollars a year in vendor payments for medical care for recipients of public assistance, it is easy to appreciate how important it is, from a purely fiscal standpoint, for a number of them to begin to move rapidly toward the establishment of the new program.
(Based on a address delivered before the American Hospital Association Conference, Washington D.C., August 5, 1965.)
Not only must the new program include all of these dependent people, but it must also provide more services. At present, States can receive Federal aid for vendor payments no matter how limited their medical care programs may be. But under the new program, five specific services must be included after June 30, 1967: inpatient hospital services; outpatient services; other laboratory and X-ray services; skilled nursing home care (this is required for adults only); and physicians' services.
States that have the Kerr-Mills program of medical assistance for the aged and 46 jurisdictions now have this program--will have to include this group also in the new program. Even with the basic hospital insurance in Title XVIII, many elderly people will need to have their deductibles paid for under the new Title XIX program, so this group will continue to constitute an important population served under the Title XIX program. However, the more liberal eligibility requirements that now apply only to the MAA group must be extended to other groups. Specifically this means that, if States are to pay for medical care for elderly people who are not dependent upon financial assistance for their day-by-day needs but do need help with medical expenses not covered by the social insurance programs, they must also pay for medical care for blind and disabled people who are not receiving financial assistance and for children in families that are not receiving financial assistance. But it does not mean that all medically indigent adults and children must be included; coverage can be limited to those who would meet all eligibility requirements that would entitle them to financial assistance except for the one requirement of not having enough income to meet their daily needs. For example, a 60 year old man would not need to be included even though he had no income at all because, unless he happened also to be blind or disabled or had dependent children, he would not be eligible for any type of aid under any of the federally aided public assistance programs.
Naturally, we would hope and expect that, at least gradually, with the increased Federal aid for medical care under Title XIX and with the basic hospitalization for all elderly under Title XVUI, States and communities would find that they could afford a plan to meet the medical needs of such persons, through their general assistance or other State or local programs, even though no Federal assistance is provided in the new law. In fact, by 1975, they must make some provision for such people if they wish to continue to get Federal support for the Title XIX program.
Therefore it seems apparent that, if States take full advantage of the new legislation, they can go a long way toward assuring that people who need but cannot afford health and medical care will receive it. They can do so in four stages: covering first all the people--and there are over 7 million of them in the nation--who depend upon the public assistance programs for all or some of their basic income; covering next the people in the same general categories who do not need financial assistance for daily maintenance but do need assistance with health and medical bills; then covering all children under 21 in any family with an income too low to allow for medical expenses, and finally picking up, at the States' own expense, any remaining medically needy persons aged 21-64. The scope and quality of medical care for all these groups must be the same with two exceptions: The programs for children need not include nursing home care, and provisions for aged persons in mental and tuberculosis institutions do not require the program to include care in these institutions for persons under 65.
To develop the facilities and services for these broadened programs and to see that they are carried out along sound and practical lines constitute a real challenge. We have been doing a great deal of work on this in the Welfare Administration for many months, and we have consulted with a number of distinguished public health and medical authorities.
We hope soon to issue some general guidelines for the States which will reflect the results of these consultations and will help them to move forward with plans that will assure that needy people receive as high quality care and as considerate service as any other segment of our population.
Although these guidelines are still in draft stage, they are sufficiently advanced so that some of the basic areas they will cover can be mentioned. For one thing, they will call for medical care units in every State public welfare agency. This will be needed even in States in which another agency might administer the new program, because the law requires that eligibility be determined by the public welfare agency. The size and makeup of the staff of the medical care unit will be affected by the extent of responsibilities of the welfare agency. In any event, however, medical personnel as well as social work personnel will be needed, and they must be well qualified since the effectiveness of any program is primarily dependent on the competency of its staff. The new amendments provide 75 percent Federal participation for the training and employment of medical and supporting staff.
We also believe that it will be highly important for the public welfare agency to have a medical advisory committee representative of both the providers and the consumers of health and medical services.
The guidelines will also cover the items that will need to be spelled out in a State's plan to indicate progressive development in scope and coverage as well as methods the State will employ to see that high standards are observed and that funds are used economically and efficiently.
States will vary widely in terms of how far and how fast they can move toward the development of their programs. Some will need new State legislation; policy changes will almost certainly be required; fiscal capacities will be another factor in the variation in State progress. It is important that States assess all these as well as a number of other highly complex administrative factors promptly so that they can begin to make realistic plans.
For States that are not ready for a Title XIX program, all possible emphasis must be placed on improving the current vendor payment programs under the public assistance titles, including MAA programs.
The interest, support, and help of professional groups, voluntary organizations, and other interested citizens are needed both in building up the public climate which will enable States and communities to use this increased Federal aid to maximum advantage in meeting their needs and also in assisting State and local public welfare agencies in developing and implementing sound and effective programs.
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By Lawrence Marcelino
(Editor's Note: The following statement was presented by Lawrence Marcelino, representing the California Council of the Blind, to the California Senate Fact Finding Committee on Labor and Welfare. The discussion will be of interest in many other states where similar proposals and problems exist in the welfare programs.)
We wish to call to your attention what we believe to be important considerations in connection with any implementation of Public Law 89-97, considerations which have not been stressed sufficiently during the legislative activity surrounding this matter in both the regular and the special sessions of the California Legislature so recently concluded.
While it is necessary to conform to the provisions of the so called Medicare Bill by 1970, and may be desirable to do so earlier, we would offer a word of caution. The short but stormy history of Public Assistance Medical Care in this State points up the pitfalls inherent in trying to provide the widest possible scope of medical services to the largest possible group of persons right at the start. In its eight years of existence, the PAMC program has been forced to repeatedly retrench in order to stay within appropriated funds. Surely we would wish to avoid this sort of thing insofar as the new medical care provisions are concerned.
In any measure to conform to the provisions of Public Law 89-97, much has been made of the fact that the Federal Government will pay 50 percent of all expeditures under Title XIX, Grants to States for Medical Assistance Programs, and how many millions of dollars California is 'losing' by delaying action in this area. Perhaps too little has been said about that other 50 percent which must come from State funds. The desire to produce a full-blown medical care program under the provisions of A.B. 760 in the closing days of the last regular session led to a lack of perspective as to how such an ambitious program could be financed.
Under present provisions of the Welfare and Institutions Code, any increase in Federal funds in behalf of this State's categorical aid programs must be passed on to the recipients. For the first time, the Congress has reinforced this provision by writing into Public Law 89-97 language which will prevent the States from merely substituting Federal dollars for State dollars when the increased funds become available. We devoutly hope that no further attempt will be made to finance an expanded medical care program by trying to take bread money from our neediest citizens, the recipients of public assistance.
Medical care is important for those who need it, and the means to pay for such care is doubly important to recipients of public assistance. However, the need for medical care is episodic for most recipients while the need to purchase the necessities of life is a daily occurrence. What we are trying to suggest is that adequate medical care is important, but a reasonably decent standard of assistance for recipients is far more immediately urgent.
Here in California at the present time, we have a program of Medical Assistance for the Aged which provides hospital and nursing home care, as well as other medical services, for those persons 65 years of age and older who meet the eligibility requirements of the Old Age Security program. The Federal Government already contributes 50 percent of this cost, without any ceiling, and it will continue to do the same after next January 1st under the provisions of Title XIX of the Social Security Act. In addition, at the present time, our Public Assistance Medical Care program provides out-patient medical services (including physicians' and dentists' services and drugs) to all adult recipients. This same battery of services should be extended to recipients of Aid to Families with Dependent Children. Presently, the Federal Government pays 50 percent of such costs for recipients of Old Age Security. After next January 1st, it will pay 50 percent of the costs of such services for all recipients and without the present ceiling of $15 a month.
The provisions of Title XVIII of the Social Security Act, Health Insurance for the Aged, will provide a rich new resource for all persons 65 years of age and older beginning next July 1st -- hospitalization, nursing home care, physicians' services, etc. -- which will meet the medical care needs of most persons (and without any State funds). We support planned extension of California's medical care programs.
Certainly in our view there should be no appreciable expansion of the present medical care program if it will jeopardize in any way a more adequate standard of assistance for this State's needy children, blind, disabled and aged.
One further matter warrants discussion. Effective July 1st, the cost of premiums for health insurance in the categorical aid programs was eliminated as a special need. We strongly urge that one of the first steps in increasing medical protection for California's aid recipients should be the restoration of health insurance payments as a special need.
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By Eugene Sibley
(Editor's Note: Some years ago the Associated Blind of Massachusetts established the Jacobus tenBroek Award to be given to a chapter of the Association carrying on particularly unique or effective work. This year the award was presented by the person after whom the award was named to the Greenfield- Athol Chapter. The award was received by the president of the chapter, Eugene Sibley. Gene's statement of the project for which the award was given is reprinted herewith. It may give some of the local organizations around the country some useful ideas and how to go about them. )
The Greenfield-Athol Association of the Blind voted to use "EDUCATION" for their 1965 Dr. Jacobus tenBroek Award project. The following are the activities which went into this project.
In October, 1964, a Greenfield Recorder-Gazette reporter took a picture of one of our blind people using his white cane to cross Main Street. An interview accompanied the picture. Both were included with the President's Proclamation setting aside October 15, 1964, as White Cane Safety Day. This appeared in other area papers and was broadcast over area radio stations.
With this for a start, the Greenfield-Athol Chapter continued to have information of interest to blind persons published in newspapers and over the radio each month.
Later on in the month of October, the members of our Association caused a letter to be written to the Athol Selectmen. In that letter we suggested that an audible signal for pedestrian crossing be considered when the new traffic lights were installed. We indicated the value of such an audible signal in aiding blind persons to travel more independently in Athol. Copies of that letter were sent to leaders of the NFB, U.S. Senator Saltenstall and Representative Conti, state senators and representatives, the Division of the Blind, Massachusetts Safety Control and to local town leaders. It is our hope that the planting of this seed in so many places will eventually prove beneficial to blind people nation-wide.
Our next step on the educational road was to give a white cane and copies of the White Cane Law to the local driving school training young and new drivers. These two instruments are to be used in each class as part of the visual instruction given every student aspiring to obtain a driver's permit.
The Greenfield-Athol Association of the Blind was honored to have Mr. Mungovan spend considerable time on a question submitted by their chapter to the Fall Liason Meeting; this question dealt with our desire to help families of newly blinded persons adjust more quickly to the situation; admittedly a very touchy area. However, the question is still being discussed; each chapter has been asked by President Rubin to submit a paper dealing with a case history of their own.
Another of our chapter's acts which we hope will reverberate across the Commonwealth took place in March, 1965. A delegate from our Association was successful in arranging a meeting between area industrial leaders, the Division of the Blind Department of Rehabilitation and himself. The purpose of that meeting was two-fold: (1) to inform personnel managers of the procedure followed for their protection when they hire a qualified blind person; (2) to open the doors to area industry so that the Rehabilitation Representative can evaluate each job for possible future use in placing a qualified blind person in one of the participating shops. The results have been most heartening; several shops have removed the blindfold of ignorance and opened their doors to the Department of Rehabilitation for evaluation; one blind person has the assurance of a job.
The Greenfield-Athol Association of the Blind has circulated among eye doctors and others working to correct faulty vision the ABM brochure and other literature designed to aid the family of newly blinded persons adjust more readily.
This year, as a direct result of an earlier interview by our public relations officer, the Police Department used one of our white canes in its spring safety lectures. The Juvenile Safety Officer showed the white cane and spoke briefly about the White Cane law at each elementary school in the area.
These safety talks came at the beginning of a white cane poster drawing project carried on in the elementary schools. Several hundred posters were voluntarily drawn by students from all elementary schools. The best posters will be exhibited in prominent places throughout the area. After final judging there will be an article in the paper and the names of the winners will be read over the air. Several of the best posters will be shown at the Franklin County Fair and at the ABM state convention in Boston in October.
The members of the Greenfield-Athol Association of the Blind feel that this project of "EDUCATION", while it can never be completed, has been successful in helping to improve the image of the blind in our area.
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Teaching cooking to the blind is just another service of a PG&E home economist.
Cooking, scrubbing pans and washing dishes may not sound like high adventure, but a group of blind youngsters in San Jose recently found these chores opening up a whole new world for them.
And in Watsonville, a group of once-competent cooks were delighted to learn such a simple thing as how to turn on a range and oven, for they were adults who late in life had lost their sight and hence their way around a kitchen.
In both cases it was PG&E home economist, Mrs. Jessie Hughs of San Jose, who guided them in this important step toward a more normal life.
For the adults, Mrs. Hughs demonstrated how a few round-headed screws set into the oven control dial provide Braille-like guides for temperature setting. (A PG&E serviceman will install these on gas ranges for the blind without charge, she told them.) She also demonstrated some easily prepared meals.
Her greatest challenge, however, was in presenting a five-session summer cooking course for blind children at San Jose's Coniff School. The youngsters, ranging in age from 8 to 15, were in an experimental class of the Alum Rock Union Elementary School District and their teacher was determined that they should have many of the normal experiences of youth; including cookery and bicycle riding.
"In our everyday world of taking life for granted, we can't imagine the delight expressed by a blind child on breaking and beating eggs for the first time or the thrill of accomplishment in measuring exactly half a cup of milk by feel, then pouring into a bowl without spilling, " says Mrs. Hughs,
"Even the humdrum jobs of washing dishes or peeling vegetables were things they had never done and were eager to do."
At the conclusion of the course the children were not only able to prepare simple meals for themselves if the occasion should require it, but they also served punch and cookies at a tea for parents and friends.
Teaching cooking to the blind is one of the more unusual assignments for PG&E home economists. But Mrs. Hughes, like the other company home economics experts, engages in a variety of activities aimed at helping people get the best results from their household appliances.
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By John Nagle
"The best convention we have ever had," was the enthusiastic comment of long-time Bay State Federationists as they referred to the Silver Anniversary Convention of the Associated Blind of Massachusetts, held October 9-10, at the Parker House, Boston, Massachusetts.
Three hundred and eighteen members and friends of the ABM attended the convention banquet, and listened to Dr. Jacobus tenBroek, NFB founder and president emeritus, as he explained the goals and philosophy of the organized blind movement, and told how Federation beliefs, once considered revolutionary, have now become generally accepted public doctrine, enacted law, and administrative practice.
The high point of the convention banquet was the warm and moving tribute of Dr. tenBroek to Charles W. Little, one of the earliest and most active Federationists in Massachusetts, and in the Nation.
And in behalf of the organized blind of Massachusetts and of the entire Nation, Dr. tenBroek presented Charlie Little with a ring bearing the ABM seal, as a recognition of his services to the organized blind movement.
The Greenfield-Athol Chapter of the ABM was given the Dr. Jacobus tenBroek Award for chapter accomplishments during the previous year and the presentation was made by Dr. tenBroek for whom the award is named.
Also at the convention banquet. Brigadier General T. F. Regan, representing Governor John Volpe, read a resolution adopted by the Massachusetts House of Representatives, which commended and congratulated the organized blind of the Commonwealth for their 25 years of activities and accomplishments.
The two-day ABM convention was filled with outstanding program items. An accounting of their stewardship was given to the Massachusetts organized blind by John F. Mungovan, Director of the Massachusetts Division of the Blind; by Benjamin Smith, Principal of the Perkins School for the Blind; and by Marjory Frye, Head of the Educational Program in the Public Schools for the Blind and Visually Impaired Children of the State.
"Reform Through the Courts" was the subject of a panel, chaired by Dr. tenBroek, and participated in by three blind practicing lawyers of Massachusetts.
Russell Anderson, blind professor of sociology at Columbia University School of Social Work, also took part in the panel discussion.
Dr. John Dupress talked extensively on work being done at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and at other places in the United
States and in the world, to develop electronic devices to aid the blind to travel, read, and, generally, to function more successfully and fully in sighted society.
Dr. Herbert Greenberg, blind psychologist, discussed discrimination as a burden of blindness, and urged that militant actions be taken to combat it--which. Dr. tenBroek pointed out, the NFB has been doing for the past 25 years.
Resolutions in support of the NFB legislative program and on state and organizational matters were considered by the convention and adopted.
Elections were held and the following persons were elected to a two year term of office: Manuel Rubin, President; Bernice Hamer, First Vice-President; Anita O'Shea, Second Vice-President; Daniel Lynch Treasurer; Eva Gilbert, Recording Secretary; Rosamond Critchley, Corresponding Secretary; Charles W. Little, Legislative Delegate.
The convention ended its annual and most successful meeting by voting to authorize the ABM president to select a city in which there is no ABM chapter for the holding of the 1966 convention.
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The Division for the Blind of the Library of Congress has recently published a revised and expanded list in print and braille of volunteers who produce books. By referring to the current list it is possible for blind readers to know who in what state can produce braille, large type, disc, or tape, and where to write to find out what books have been transcribed.
Other publications available from the Division for the Blind are:
Books for the Blind. A pamphlet of general information about the whole program written by Howard Haycraft.
Catalogs and Booklists
Braille: Press-braille, 1962-63. Print and Braille
Recorded Books: Talking Books, 1962-63. Print.
Magnetic Tape, 1962. Large type.
Booklist: Reading for Profit, an annotated list of selected press-braille books, talking books, and books on magnetic tape. January 1963.
Large type and braille.
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By Jacob Freid
(From The Jewish Braille Review, July-August, 1965)
Summer should be a joyous time of the year. There is a respite in the nose-to-grindstone pattern of toil as the rising thermometer melts the pile of daily chores down to reasonable proportions, and the vacation trail beckons throughout the land.
However, for our blind college youth, summertime is too often a harbinger of frustration. For the past several weeks the editor of this magazine has been unsuccessfully trying to do what should come naturally to employment officers and vocational guidance experts in agencies for the blind -- obtain a summer job for several highly intelligent, conscientious and willing and able to work young college men and a girl. And this is in a city where three agencies for the blind raise from at least $2,300,000 to well over that sum each year.
There is something radically wrong. Obviously these agencies are caught in a handout, baksheesh situation where they ask for a contribution instead of a job. The begging practices which appall them when engaged in by a blind man because of the distressing image it reflects is not properly attacked at its root--a job for each blind person qualified to perform it satisfactorily.
The lack of vision -- not among our blind -- but among the professional top echelons of agencies for the blind is deplorable and tragic. When you see what can be done in a state like Iowa under vital, dedicated, intelligent leadership, you realize how puerile and deficient most of us are in doing what should be and could be done in behalf of an aggressive Anti-poverty Program and Jobs for the Blind, Basically the need is for public education of the community power structure, employers, personnel director s, and public opinion molders to the capabilities of properly educated and trained blind people qualified to perform on the job successfully on a par with the sighted.
I know of no city-wide, state-wide, or nation-wide conference summoned together where the ablest people in work for the blind, the vocationally and professionally successful blind as living, visible, working proof and community leaders, employers and personnel directors have met together, to exchange knowledge and to formulate a program for "Equal Opportunity for Jobs for the Blind."
I know of no community audit or professional job opportunity survey conducted by a local or national agency for the blind. It may be that we the blind shall have to conduct a self survey and do for ourselves what the benevolent paternalists did not do. Getting community leaders as sponsors of a community survey is a central instrument for discovering areas of intentional and unintentional prejudice in employment and job discrimination against the blind. Such a survey is not primarily interested in people's attitudes towards the blind. It believes that practices, actual discriminations--a number of which may be illegal -- are of greater importance. While discrimination results in part from prejudiced attitudes, it is also true that prejudice results in part from habits of unequal treatment. The well-conducted survey results in findings and proposals that attack the vicious circle at the level of action, practice and, when necessary, legislation.
Further, the self-survey can provide a yardstick in community relations. The citizens can compare their city with others where comparable data have been obtained. Further surveys can measure progress in the extent to which we succeed in remedying the community's most serious shortcomings in employment opportunities for the properly equipped and qualified blind.
This is a tested method of participating ourselves in what concerns us deeply. It is a way social science in our harassed age may help to sustain the pulse of democracy which beats so insistently to the principle of equality of opportunity on the basis of individual merit not disability.
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By Lawrence Marcelino
The October 1965 Convention of the California Council of the Blind held at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel will stand as one of the most significant in the history of the organization. Every general session from the moment that the gavel sounded the meeting to order to the final adjournment was packed with important subject matter and with speakers who held the attention of the delegates. There were panel discussions on Medi-Care, recent legal developments, the Business Enterprise Program and Opportunities for the Blind in the Chiropractic Profession.
Dr. Hartford H. Brookins, Chairman of the United Civil Rights Committee of Los Angeles County delivered an impassioned and moving speech calling all minority groups to demand the social justice which is rightfully theirs but which heretofore has been only a platitude. In the course of the discussion that followed Dr. Brookins' magnificent address, he agreed to join organizations such as ours in their legislative efforts to protect and advance the welfare rights of minorities.
Los Angeles City Councilman Billy Mills inspired the Convention with his message regarding the war on poverty. He urged the Council immediately to adopt programs for the welfare of the blind. Immediately after the conclusion of Mr. Mills' speech the President appointed a committee of Council members to draw up proposals in accordance with Mr. Mills' suggestions.
The panel discussion recent legal developments featured Dr. Jacobus tenBroek who reported on recent court decisions affecting the blind and recent moves for a State Constitutional Amendment that would remove state administration of public assistance from the counties of California to the state government. So much dissatisfaction with county administration has been experienced by recipients of public welfare services including the blind that the delegates immediately voted that the Council seek transfer of all welfare services from the counties to the state.
Kenneth Jernigan, First Vice President of the National Federation of the Blind, discussed legislation pending in the Congress that would amend the Federal Vocational Rehabilitation Law. The measure appropriates millions to the states for rehabilitation services but shows little promise of increasing employment opportunities for the blind and other disabled. Vast sums are appropriated for sheltered work shops and "rehabilitation facilities" and despite the evils and wastefulness of sheltered work shops, the blind and disabled of the current generation must face the grim likelihood that rehabilitation agencies, both federal and state, will resort to endless diagnosis and sheltered workshops rather than vocational training and placement in competitive self supporting employment.
The panel discussion on the Business Enterprise Program (blind operated vending stands and cafeterias) featured Mr. William Houghton, Vice President of Manning's Inc.; Mr. Robert Melody, Business Enterprise Program Administrator, State Department of Rehabilitation, and two blind operators, Henry Negrete and Charles Galloway. Mr. Houghton explained or made known to the convention that Manning's is concentrating its flourishing business on the installation of in plant food service for factory and office building employees. Manning's cafeterias pay no rental or fee to the building custodian or to the factories wherein their cafeterias are installed. This is in stark contrast to the set aside fees that blind operators must pay the state to operate cafeterias and cigar stands in state, county and municipal buildings. This is in stark contrast to the shameful efforts of the State Department of Rehabilitation to seek legal authorization to increase the set aside fee to as much as ten percent. The success that Manning's has achieved in securing profitable cafeterias at no cost to themselves is in contrast to the abysmal failure that the Department of Rehabilitation has produced wherein more than half of the blind operators in the program are deriving less than a living wage. Considerable time was devoted to discussion of the evils of the department's method of selecting operators for vending stands, snack bars and cafeterias, and with the evils of the advisory committee. The delegates were amazed by the remarks of an operator who was unknown to the Council but who criticized the President for not including a person on the panel who was "friendly to the program". The President pointed out that the purpose of the panel was to elicit problems and difficulties rather than to whitewash the agency which is abundantly done by the sycophantic Uncle Toms who obsequiously curry the departmental favor in hopes of securing advancement in the program.
The panel discussion concerning Medi-Care featured state, Federal and county welfare personnel including Perry Sundquist, Chief of the Division for the Blind of the California State Department of Social Welfare. A great deal of information was given, to the delegates regarding the provisions of the Medi-Care bill and the pending state legislation to provide medical and hospital services for public assistance recipients and medically indigent.
While the Council President allocated as much as an hour to each of these panel discussions, the inevitable outcome was that there was not enough time available to answer all of the many questions raised from the floor.
The featured speaker of the Banquet, attended by some 200 delegates and friends, was Kenneth Jernigan. The Council's Annual Achievement Awards were presented to Margaret Wilson for outstanding service in training blind persons for dictation machine transcribing; Dr. John Jensen for success in his profession as a Chiropractor, and Mr. Wood Wilson for his success in participation in his community as a blind person. The Council awarded scholarships to six blind college students, an aggregate of $2,000. Fourteen resolutions, defining Council policy on various matters, were adopted.
All in all, it was a hard working convention cram packed with substance of importance for the blind of today.
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By Noel Lieberman
(From Oakland Tribune, Oct. 6, 1965)
The cast came off the mangled right foot of 20-year-old Elwin Kelsey yesterday.
The flesh on the bottom of the foot, which had been severed in an escalator accident on Sept. 23 in Los Angeles and reattached surgically, had failed to set well enough, doctors said.
The blind ice-skating star from Pleasant Hill would have to undergo further grafting on the arch, they predicted. His big toe looked fine. It had been severed and reattached, but he was wiggling it even before the cast was removed.
Only the tip of the third toe remained in doubt. It may have to be amputated later, but the indomitable youngster figures he'll have little trouble adjusting to that if he eventually gets back on skates.
Also severed in the mishap at the Sports Arena where Kelsey had been appearing with the Ice Follies were the ligaments, tendons and arteries on two other toes. They were resewn, too, and apparently have mended.
"He will need a skin graft and it will take time," said a doctor who has been treating Kelsey at Orthopedic Hospital in Los Angeles." But the chances are good that he will skate again."
What did the latest prospectus mean to the handsome skater himself? Only a delay in the personal timetable he has set for his return to the ice.
His confidence has grown daily since the accident which at first threatened to end the only way of life he has known for the last six years.
"I'm almost as optimistic as I was before they removed the cast," Kelsey said by telephone from his hospital bed. "It just means I have to calculate another month's delay before I return to skating."
He had hoped to leave the hospital Sunday, but now it appears that his stay will be lengthened by about three weeks. He originally had hoped to be skating again in February or March.
Like the subjects of other poignant comeback stories, Kelsey tends to discount, at least partially, the physical aspect of his battle.
"To me it's mostly in your mind and heart, and I'm very hopeful," he said, "You can't just lie here and say this is the end."
"This is my life and this is what I want to pursue. I'll be doing a lot of reading in the next weeks and then I want to be ready to go again."
Six Years Ago
Kelsey's "life" started only six years ago, when he first began taking lessons at Walnut Creek Ice Skating Rink.
Afflicted from birth with congenital cataracts, he has only 10 percent sight in one eye. Legally he is blind, but that 10 percent vision was enough to make him a star with 17-year-old Christine Simon of Walnut Creek in pair skating competition for four years.
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By Helen S. Hutchins
The Eighth Annual convention of the New Hampshire Federation of the Blind was held on October l6 in Concord, New Hampshire. The convention was called to order by the president, Franklin Van Vliet. Mr. Edward Vachon was re-elected to serve another term as an executive board member. The 1966 convention will be held in Claremont, New Hampshire.
Four interesting and important talks were presented. Alfred Beckwith spoke about the operation of the vending stand program in the State House. Mr. Miller Nute of the Concord office of the Social Security Administration explained social security and medicare advances in the recent session of Congress. A question and answer period followed.
Dr. William Kearny of Manchester, New Hampshire discussed recent advances in research in ophthalmology. Cold surgery is proving to be more effective especially in detachment of the retina as it does less damage to the tissues than heat.
Two students from the Dartmouth School of Engineering presented a prototype of a Typewriter-Brailler which they and others had chosen as a research project in their classes. The machine converts typing into braille. (See story in the May 1965 issue of the MONITOR.) The project is as yet only in its developmental stages but it holds great promise when it is perfected.
A banquet of turkey and all the fixings was enjoyed in the evening by 107 Federationists and guests. Reverend Charles E. Cook, Pastor of the First Baptist Church, Concord, was acting Master of Ceremonies for the evening. The newly inaugurated Henry Van Vliet Award for outstanding service to the blind was presented to Carl Camp, Supervisor of Services to the Blind in the State of New Hampshire. United States Senator Thomas McIntyre gave the principal banquet address.
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A program of graduate studies leading to the Doctor of Education degree in the field of work with the visually handicapped has been announced by Colorado State College, Greeley, Colorado. The program, which is part of the college's special education curriculum, is reportedly designed to develop professional competence in four areas:
"1. Curriculum development, methodology and learning difficulties of visually handicapped children.
2. Diagnosis, growth, development and associated anomalies of visually handicapped children.
3. Administration, supervision and consultative services in Special Education.
4. Habilitation, counseling and research in Special Education."
Two years of prior professional experience with visually impaired children are required of each candidate for the Ph.D. program, along with a background of course work in the field of vision and blindness. Courses required at the doctoral level are mainly in special education, with electives drawn from rehabilitation, guidance, and physical and mental retardation.
Colorado State College is apparently the first institution of higher learning in the United States to award the Ph.D. in the specialized area of educational work with the blind. Information received from the college notes that various federally supported grants are currently available for eligible graduate students; further information may be obtained by writing to: Special Education, Colorado State College, Greeley, Colorado 80631.
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By Russell Kletzing
The felicitations that are due Representative John Dent, Pennsylvania, are for his appointment as chairman of the General Subcommittee on Labor of the House Committee on Education and Labor. The position became vacant this summer when Representative James Roosevelt of California was appointed by President Johnson to a position with the United States delegation to the United Nations.
The appointment is good news for federationists, for Mr. Dent has, for many years, been the author of the Federation's bill to provide federal minimum wages for workers in sheltered shops. Earlier this year, Representative Dent introduced HR 8093, which is now pending before the subcommittee which he chairs. Congressman Dent's acute understanding of the problems of the unfortunate and the steps that can be taken to remedy them, qualify him highly for the chairmanship of this important subcommittee. Federationists are optimistic that his new leadership position will improve the chance of passage of the sheltered shop minimum wage bill that he is advocating.
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By Rogers Smith
Calvin Wooten presided over the meeting of the Alabama Federation held at the Dinkler-Tutwiler Hotel in Birmingham, during the second weekend in October, A feature of the convention was a panel on employment opportunities for the blind featuring blind people employed in insurance, switchboard operation, training for switchboard operation, and in sales engineering for Southern Bell Telephone Company. A supervisor for the company also participated in the panel. Two blind switchboard operators are employed in Alabama and three others have been trained there and are employed in nearby states.
Another interesting report was from the librarian of the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind. Both he and the employee, who reproduces tape recordings are blind.
The banquet featured an appeal for unity and renewed effort to carry out the Federation's goals in the banquet address delivered by President Russell Kletzing. More than 80 door prizes were awarded. The musical program that was presented included National Executive Committee member Eulasee Hardenbergh among the talented Alabamans who sang. A banquet guest well known to federationists was Carl Elliott, whose subcommittee held hearings concerning the right to organize bill and other problems affecting the blind in 1959 and 1960.
Officers elected were: Rogers Smith, Box 2i, Calhoun, Alabama 36012, President; Charles DeLong, First Vice President; Evelyn Lee, Second Vice President; Gwen Lamon, Secretary; Burlie Dutton, Treasurer; all of Birmingham. Fifty dollars was voted as the contribution to the International Federation of the Blind.
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A veteran leader of the organized blind movement in New England and the nation was honored last month in a special ceremony at the annual convention of the Associated Blind of Massachusetts.
Charles Little, past president of the ABM and former secretary of the National Federation of the Blind, was described as a pioneer organizer and creative force in the development of the nationwide movement by Dr. Jacobus tenBroek, founder and president emeritus of the NFB, who delivered the address honoring Little on behalf of the Massachusetts organization. A gift in the form of a ring also was presented to him by the membership of the ABM.
An early leader of the Associated Blind of Massachusetts following its inauguration in 1940, Little was secretary of the state group for many years before assuming its presidency in 1954. In the same year he was elected as secretary of the National Federation, a position which he held for two terms. Little was a major force in bringing about the affiliation of the ABM with the National Federation in 1949, and for many years thereafter was a tireless organizer for both groups -- not only within Massachusetts (where he instituted several chapters) but in the neighboring states of New Hampshire and Maine.
At the age of 76 Charles Little has barely slackened his activities: he is currently president of the Associated Blind of Greater Boston, and still holds his position of many years as the ABM's legislative lobbyist at the state capital.
Little lost his sight in 1912 at the age of 23, while well on the way to a successful musical career as a violinist and orchestra conductor. Undismayed by the onset of blindness, he promptly assembled a solo violin vaudeville act which was booked solid across the country for the next three years. He later studied at the Perkins Institute for the Blind. In recent years, as a resident of Boston, Little has alternately conducted a commercial radio program, sold life insurance, and devoted the major part of his time and talents to the welfare and well-being of his fellow blind.
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By Joel A. Roth
(31 Talking Book Topics Sept. )
A four-million reader market sits patiently in the half-light of limited vision, waiting for the publishing industry to meet its needs. But to date the industry has largely ignored it.
Considerable light and energy have been focused on the needs of the child with limited vision. But low-vision readers under 20 years of age account for only one-eighth of the four million Americans with low-vision: those with enough visual acuity to perceive gross forms--in other words, big, black type.
Who are these four million? They come from many places: More than 400,000 Americans are "legally blind.” Of these from one-half to three- quarters could read large type, probably 16 to 24 point. One out of every 500 school children requires some visual aid to reading; they add another 100,000 to the list. Nearly 18 million people in our country are 65 and over. If only 25 percent of these found large print easier to read, they alone would add four million plus. In addition, it has been estimated that nearly 600,000 non-legally blind people are unable to read ordinary newspaper type. To this may be added cerebral palsied readers who have normal vision, but require enlarged books big enough to scan as the books lie flat on a table.
Summarizing the market, conservative estimates appear to converge on the four million figure. The National Health survey estimates about 3,495,000 visually impaired in all areas. ... Of the four-million figure, about half a million are children.
Meeting The Need
Children: This one-eighth segment of the market has received nearly 100 percent of the commercial and voluntary group attention thus far. Voluntary groups are meeting the need in these ways:
- Single copies manually typed on large-type typewriters. One estimate places costs at $20 per 100 textbook pages. . . .
- Thirty-five mm microfilm photographic enlargements of book pages… enlarged to 8 1/2 x 11" pages, enlarging the type 1.5 to 2.2 times the original - thus the average high school text will be equal to 14 to 18 point.
- Offset lithography has been the means of taking a giant step forward in providing large type books. American Printing House for the Blind . . . lithographs textbooks for the first 12 grades and does no adult material at all. They prepare plates photographically, going to expensive resetting of type only when absolutely necessary....
- Paper duplicating plates can be used for "quantity" (more than six) copies…
- University Microfilms, Ann Arbor, Michigan, has recently begun its Sight Saver Books program.... providing Xeroxed single copies and books by offset for quantities beyond 14. Costs are comparable to the per- page cost of the Xerox service...
Commercial publishing, too, has concentrated mainly on the children's market - particularly el-hi texts....
Adults: What about service to the broad adult market? The largest segment of this market is the aged.... They have a lifetime habit of reading behind them - they want to continue to read. Yet publishers... have done, little to service this continuing market. For the most part it is served by non-profit groups:
- Voluntary groups because of budget limitations and the traditional emphasis on servicing the very young, have almost completely neglected this area. Religious groups such as the American Bible Society have been particularly active in supplying religious material in large type. Some groups try to meet the adult need with titles that, while intended primarily for the school age reader, will appeal to the adult. They include "classic" works...
- Commercial houses have done no better. There is, however one exception - Keith Jennison Books. After five years of research and 18 months of active preparation, Jennison Books is publishing 10 large-type diversified titles aimed at the adult market.... The text is enlarged to 18 point from clean original conventional-size published editions, lithographed . . . and case bound to a 8 1/2 x 11" trim size. Keith Jennison Books are being published by the Franklin Watts division of Grolier Inc. The books are being sold mainly through institutional channels and are priced at least one dollar more than the hard cover, trade edition.
- Xerox Corp. has enlarged and reproduced some 300 titles. Costs range from 10 to 17 cents per page for the first copy and from 8 to 15 cents per page for subsequent copies.... In addition, Xerox also provides an enlarged version of the "Reader's Digest.” With less than 500 subscribers, the cost is over $40 per year...
- In another publishing venture aimed at both the adult and child reader, Field Enterprises in Chicago published a large type edition, photographically enlarged, of its "World Book Encyclopedia." According to Field, it is the first general encyclopedia published for the low-vision user.... The large type set sells for $299, including transportation...
Voluntary groups have, through trial and error research, found some standards that seem to obtain for the needs of most low-vision readers. More formal research has been done by scientists working at university institutes…
Researchers admit that for every answer they uncover, beneath it they find another question. However, some ground rules for preparing large-type copy do seem to be emerging. Here are some of them:
Illustrations: Line drawings are recommended as best. Line drawings… done in pen and ink, bold pencil, crayon or thin charcoal lines, are much better than shaded or halftone illustrations where details that are too fine and a cluttered look confuse the low-vision reader…
Paper: Elimination of glare is a major factor, as well as the need for high opacity to eliminate any show through… White has been the most commonly used color thus far, but it should be emphasized that no definitive answers have been provided. Because of the page size, the paper should be as lightweight as possible.
Ink: Some low-vision people are color blind to one or more colors. Therefore, care should be exercised if the ink color is other than black.
Paper Size: Avoid cumbersome, hard to handle, outsized pages.
Binding: The most important consideration is that the books lie flat. For this reason, spiral and plastic comb bindings have been widely used with books issued by voluntary groups and by Xerox. This, however, is not suitable for libraries. In this area, commercial publishers can provide standard library and trade bindings.
Leading: Researchers are still arguing here (leading may prove more important than the type face itself), but basic guidelines seem to shape up this way. Minimum leading: 2 to 3 points; well leaded: from 3 to 6 points; and excessive leading: equal in height to type size or greater. Letter and word size are important too – but just how, no one is sure.
Line length: Lines should be justified flush left and right. Research is currently concentrating on optimum line length, but a minimum of 30 picas has been mentioned by several sources.
Type Face: Consensus agrees that bold face is best, and that italics should be eliminated altogether. But agreement ends here. The controversy over serif versus sans serif still rages, with the definitive verdict yet to be brought in.
Type Size: Fourteen point is the absolute minimum, researchers say, with the maximum at 24 point. But within this range, the question is still open. Eighteen seems to be as easily read as 24 by most low- vision readers, but the question remains whether the optimum is 16 or 18 point.
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By James R. Carlock
The 1965 Arizona Federation of the Blind Convention was held in Tucson, Arizona, October 16-17 at the Santa Rita Hotel.
The convention opened with the presentation of Chapter and Committee Reports. The welcome speech was delivered by Tucson Mayor, Lew Davis, followed by James Fall delivering the President's Report.
Reports and panel discussions were held during the convention with many workers from Arizona Blind Services participating. One of the panelists was Frank Kells, Executive Director of the Phoenix Center for the Blind.
National President, Russell Kletzing, conducted a discussion on Sheltered Workshops and delivered the banquet address.
The following officers were elected: president, James R. Carlock, 3302 E. Van Buren, Phoenix; first vice-president, Julia Zozaya; second vice-president, Mary Beatty; incumbent, Joe Hurles, secretary; and treasurer, Gorden Perrine.
An outstanding feature was a resolution volunteering to donate the equivalent of one meal to the International Federation of the Blind.
Delegates to the Louisville convention are Jim Carlock; first alternate, Julia Zozaya; second alternate, James Fall.
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The appointment of two new members of the National Advisory Council on Vocational Rehabilitation was announced today by Miss Mary E. Switzer, Commissioner of Vocational Rehabilitation.
They are: Mrs. Alexander Meiklejohn of Berkeley, California, chairman of the Clinic of Planned Parenthood, Alameda County, California; and Hunter P. Wharton of Bethesda, Maryland, president of the International Union of Operating Engineers.
Mrs. Meiklejohn was president of the Berkeley (California) Mental Health Association and member of the National Advisory Council on Mental Health before accepting her present position as chairman of the Clinic of Planned Parenthood. She is the widow of Dr. Alexander Meiklejohn, world famous American educator who did pioneering educational experimental work in a number of American Universities including Amherst and the University of Wisconsin. In his later life he addressed himself to numerous civil liberties causes and to writing a number of well-known works on freedom of speech. Helen Meiklejohn devoted herself to her husband and actively participated in his work. The Meiklejohn's have lived in Berkeley for many years where they became fast friends of the tenBroek's and close collaborators in many undertakings related to academic freedom and civil liberties.
Mr. Wharton has had a long and distinguished career as a labor leader. From 1940 to the present time, he has served the International Union of Operating Engineers in the offices of secretary-treasurer, vice-president, international trustee, assistant to the president, and president.
Mr. Wharton also has been active in public affairs. In addition to serving as vice-president of the National Safety Council and chairman of the Labor Conference of the Council, he is the author of numerous articles on safety. He is a former chairman and secretary of the Alleghany (Pennsylvania) County Board of Public Assistance.
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By Hideyuki Iwahashi
(from V Blind Welfare 17 [India, 1963])
Mr. Hideyuki Iwahashi (38) joined the Nippon Lighthouse Welfare Centre for the Blind, Osaka after graduation. Has carried out research into the conditions of the blind in Osaka and blind women in Japan - the reports of both of which yielded substantial data. Was appointed as Chief Director of the Lighthouse after the death in 1954 of his father, Mr. Takeo Iwahashi (Founder of the Lighthouse). Organised the Far East Conference on Work for the Blind held in Japan in 1955. Is a member of the W. C. W. B. and has attended several international conferences. Mr. Iwahashi has been instrumental in organizing a programme for aid to Blind Welfare Organisations in Asia for which the Lighthouse has made a special appropriation of 100,000 yen per annum. - Ed.
COMPARED with that of Europe, the history of work for the blind in Japan had its beginnings long ago. We generally regard Valentin Hauy and Louis Braille as the forerunners of welfare work for the blind. In Japan, however, the first reference to the blind can be traced back to 752 A.D, Ganjin, a learned priest from China, came to Japan to perform the "opening-eyes" ceremony of the big bronze statue of the Buddha at Nara. Ganjin had lost his sight on the way to Nara but he had such a striking and strong personality that the people of Japan offered him their respect and reverence in spite of his blindness. His example helped to change the attitude of the people around him towards the blind – from the traditional fatalism of Buddhism into a more constructive and helpful one.
A little later after Ganjin, the fourth prince of the Emperor Ninmei, Prince Hitoyasu, became blind and devoted himself to koto (lute) music. He sympathised with the blind, gave them some of his allowance or taught them to play the koto so well that they could earn their own livelihood. As a result, the government also recognized the necessity of protecting the blind and an organisation called "Tohdoh" was formed some years later. Also, several ranks of the blind were established. Differences in rank were indicated by the colours of the gowns and shapes of the safety canes. The blind learned to play the koto and also there were some who lived by giving massage, acupuncture and moxibustion which had been imported from China in 562 A.D.
Until 1871, the blind in Japan were treated far better and were more privileged than they are in the present day. Many blind persons attained fame and received recognition. Early in the 17th century Waichi Sugiyama invented a new method of acupuncture and laid a firm foundation for its recognition as a monopolised profession of the blind. In the next century a famous blind scholar, Hokiichi Hanawa, wrote Gunsho-ruiju, a wonderful collection of legends and folk-songs in 1,851 volumes. These proved an invaluable contribution to the development of Japanese literature and culture. Thus, contrary to that of Europe, the former days of the blind in Japan can be called "the Golden Age of the Blind".
After the Meiji Restoration in 1848, the idea of freedom and equality of modern society broke down the protected world of the blind. The organisation "Todoh" was dissolved. In 1871, the Kokuwan system (the ranks of the blind) was abolished and the mansions of the blind were confiscated. The abolition of the Kokuwan system was a major blow for the blind who had been accustomed to living in favourable circumstances. Now the blind had to face a severe struggle for survival. They then tried to adapt themselves to the newly introduced methods of western education and looked for new occupations.
The first school for the blind in Japan was established in Kyoto in 1878 and began to educate the blind in the modern way. Acupuncture, massage and moxibustion which had been developed during a long period still continued to be the main professions of the blind. Today there are 75 schools for the blind in Japan with an intake of 3,012 in primary schools, 2,348 in junior high and 3,995 in senior high schools. The teachers number 3,213 in all. In 1890, Kuraji Ishikawa adapted the six-dot Braille system into Japanese.
The public, however, continued to be apathetic towards the needs of the blind. Since 1900, the leaders of the blind who became aware of this endeavoured to attract public attention towards the problems of the blind as well as to make the blind themselves regain their self-confidence and self-awakening. These efforts culminated in two memorable visits of Miss Helen Keller. In 19 37 and 1948, the writer's late father, Takeo Iwahashi, invited her to Japan and conducted a nation-wide movement covering the whole of Japan, Korea and Manchuria. As a result of these visits, a law for the compulsory education of blind children was enacted in 1948 and a welfare law for the handicapped in 1950. Also in 1948, the Japan Union of Associations for the Blind was organised and in 1952 all the welfare institutions for the blind were combined in the Japan Council of Welfare Institutions for the Blind. Thus was activised work for the blind in Japan.
When the first assembly of the World Council for the Welfare of the Blind met in 1954 at Paris, France, these two big organisations cooperated and joined the W.C.W.B. sending as representatives Mr. Tokujiro Torii (President of the Japan United Associations of the Blind) and the writer, Hideyuki Iwahashi, to this conference. This opportunity gave the blind of Japan an insight into the international problems of blindness and also helped to focus attention on the particular needs and problems of the blind in Asia. It became apparent that there were particular problems in Asia and Japan had to take the lead in solving them. So, in October 1955, the Far East Conference on Work for the Blind was held in Tokyo and was attended by more than 50 delegates and observers from the countries in Asia. This Conference was indeed a springboard for all who participated in it -- helping to bridge the gap between the old conventions of the East and the modern culture of the West besides proving an incentive to the workers in the field to approach the problem with a new perspective. In this sense, the Far East Conference was a very significant event for the blind in this region.
The Blind of Today and the Blind of Tomorrow
Today in Japan there are 5 rehabilitation centres for the adult blind, 29 rehabilitation institutes for blind children, 12 Braille libraries, 9 Braille printing presses and 2 welfare centres.
As for the occupations of the blind, most of the working blind are engaged in massage, acupuncture, moxibustion, music and in teaching in schools for the blind. There are also some who are employed as machine operators in industries and in trades such as basketry, knitting, radio assembling, pottery, straw work, brush making, broom making sandal making, etc. However, their number is small compared with that of those who are doing massage and acupuncture. Today a number of sighted people have begun to enter the fields of massage and acupuncture and hence it is essential that new avenues of employment are found for the blind in the future. Our schools will also have to face reality and include training in other trades besides massage which at present is the only training offered by our vocational schools and training centres.
In recent years, many workers for the blind and leaders amongst the blind themselves have campaigned for the introduction of a pension scheme for the blind and, at last, this has been taken up for consideration by the government. When this is realised, the blind will not need to struggle to live but will choose the jobs they enjoy most and then the variety will increase.
There is now another problem concerning the blind. The Welfare Law for the Handicapped enacted in 1950 is, as the name indicates, a law for all kinds of physically handicapped. As social work and the study of each kind of handicap develops, such an all-inclusive law cannot cover particular needs.
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The 30th Annual Convention of the Pennsylvania Federation of the Blind was held at the Penn Harris Hotel, Harrisburg, October 9 and 10, 1965. Twenty-seven chapters were represented. At the banquet Saturday night the featured speaker was Ernest Korfeld, national secretary-treasurer of the Retail Clerks Association. After the board meeting on Friday night and after the banquet on Saturday night friends from every section of the state gathered in the hospitality room.
Dr. Toland, State Commissioner of Public Welfare, explained the new federal-state plan. Eligible blind persons now receive $83.60 per month, a figure soon to be raised to $90. Persons who remain on the state pension system are getting a raise of $5 which brings that grant to $75 a month. The $5 increase was the result of the work of the Federation's Legislative Steering Committee consisting of William Murray, Chairman, Frank Lugiano, Leroy Price and William Taylor, Jr.
John Ludwig, Director of the Social Security Office in Harrisburg, outlined the various benefits of the social security programs.
Chapter development, fund raising, increasing membership were among the topics receiving convention attention.
The newly elected officers are: Frank Lugiano, President, 20 No. Washington Street, Wilkes-Barre; William Murray, First Vice President; James Barrault, Second Vice President; James Morganstern, Third Vice President; Dr. Mae Davidow, Recording Secretary; William Correy, Corresponding Secretary; Edward Pickens, Treasurer, Dr. Freddie Spruill, Chaplain; William Taylor, Jr. Attorney; Rita Drill, Editor of "We The Blind"; Catherine Pieczynski, Associate Editor.
The diligent and faithful treasurer for thirty years, Mrs. Evelyn Pickens, retired because of poor health.
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(From East Side News October)
Helping most of the handicapped through services such as Sensicall is a tradition with telephone people that dates back to Alexander Graham Bell.
His interest in helping the handicapped has been echoed not only by telephone scientists and engineers but by other telephone people -- on and off the job.
For example, the Telephone Pioneers of America, an organization of more than 250,000 senior telephone employees, produces braille books, assists in fund drives, makes surgical dressings, repairs "talking book" machines and does rehabilitation and other hospital work.
In New York State, where there are 28,000 members. Pioneers will instruct the deaf in the use of Sensicall. Members will also teach Morse Code to both the deaf and their relatives and friends to facilitate use of the new device.
While the Pioneers perform these day-to-day services, New York Telephone and other Bell companies continue to provide new communications channels for the estimated 20 to 30 million people with physical or sensory handicaps.
Special products include a Seeing Aid for Blind switchboard operators and an amplifier build into a telephone receiver for users who are hard-of-hearing, Picturephone service offers a long-range promise to deaf people. Demonstrations have shown the deaf can effectively carry on telephone conversations over Picturephone by reading each other's lips.
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(From American Printing House release)
This is a brief summary of the automated method of mass Braille production which is in operation at the American Printing House for the Blind, Louisville, Kentucky. A 709 data processing system made available to the Printing House by International Business Machines is used in the procedure.
Literature to be put into Braille is first keypunched into cards. The keypunch operator copies the inkprint material and indicates the beginning of chapters, paragraphs, and other format features. A knowledge of Braille is not required.
Using the punched cards as input the computer converts the inkprint text into Grade 2 Braille. A program developed by IBM in cooperation with the American Printing House provides the computer with the rules of Braille and a dictionary of contractions and exceptions. Translation proceeds at the rate of 1,000 words per minute.
Accuracy of translation can be checked by a retranslation program which produces a proof of the translated text. This proof shows both the Braille cells represented by dots and the inkprint letters.
Translation output is in the form of punched cards containing the Braille code. Each column of the card contains punches representing a Braille cell or a space or a format instruction.
The cards are read by automatic stereograph machines. These machines, which were developed by the American Printing House for the Blind, produce a metal plate in accord with the instructions contained in the cards. The metal plates are used on Braille presses for interpoint embossing of Braille books.
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By George Bonsky
Our 2Oth Annual Convention was held at the Sheraton-Dayton Hotel in Dayton, Ohio, October 15, 16, and 17 with Carl Johnson and Ernest Schaefer of Dayton as convention co-chairmen and the members- at-large as convention hosts. The theme was "Success -- The Goal of The Blind. " One speaker on Saturday was Dr. Theodore Suie, Eye Research Department of Ohio State University. Also John Wilson of Hartville, sightless attorney, U.S. Department of Justice.
Banquet speakers were introduced by Judge Frederic Howe of the City of Oakwood. The principal speaker was Gregg Wallace, the News and Editorial Director of Radio Station WAVI and president of the Ohio Associated Press Broadcasters' Association. A musical program was presented by a choral group from Walter E. Stephans High School, and a dance was held afterwards. Robert Whitehead of Kentucky was also a speaker at the convention.
Our 1966 convention will be at Youngstown, Ohio.
The officers elected are: president, George Bonsky, 309 West Maple Street, Hartville; 1st vice president, Alfonso Smith; 2nd vice president, Helen Johnson; executive secretary, William L. Dressell; recording secretary, Mary Eiche; and treasurer, Ivan Garwood.
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(Reprint from the New York Times)
JOHANNESBURG, May 8 - An eye surgery instrument invented by a young South African doctor who used his ballpoint pen as a guide has attracted the attention of several foreign specialists.
The instrument, called a freezing pencil, is said to make eye surgery easier and safer. It takes the place of forceps in delicate operations.
More than 60 eye operations have been carried out with the freezing pencil at Baragwanath Hospital for non-Europeans near Johannesburg.
Last week the instrument was demonstrated to a conference of international eye specialists in Barcelona. It will be shown to South African doctors in Port Elizabeth next month. It uses a compressed gas, which freezes as it expands.
The name of the young inventor of the device is a professional secret. The South African Medical Council forbids the publication of individual doctor's names.
Explaining the use of the instrument today, a Johannesburg doctor said that when the tip of the pencil is applied to an eye cataract, it freezes moist tissue which can then be lifted cleanly away.
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Hard on the heels of the National Federation's Silver Anniversary Convention, held in Washington last July, has come a similar 25-year celebration by the Associated Blind of Massachusetts. The ABM's first quarter-century was memorialized during the annual convention of the state association at Boston's Parker House October 8 through 10.
A succession of convention speakers and guests -- including the AMB's first president, George Lucier, and the NFB's first president, Dr. Jacobus tenBroek -- recalled the many achievements posted by the Massachusetts blind in the years since its inauguration on September 5, 1940.
One of the first and most substantial of those accomplishments occurred in 1943, when the Associated Blind initiated and promoted a bill demanding in forceful terms an increase in the state's meager aid grant to the blind. Charles Little, long-time secretary and legislative spokesman of the ABM, recalls the battle that ensued:
"I personally sent a letter to every representative in the State House regarding that measure. It was a strong bill -- almost too strong, as some of the legislators felt that it condemned them for not cooperating with us. Well, it worked. Although in those days the legislature was predominantly Republican, the bill was passed. This piece of legislation increased the appropriation to the Division of the Blind to such an extent that it virtually doubled the Aid to the Blind check -- from a monthly average of around $27 to approximately $47. It was our first significant victory."
From the beginning the ABM cooperated closely with the National Federation, which had also come into being in the autumn of 1940. One of the primary aims of the Massachusetts pioneers was to affiliate with the NFB, but various conditions intervened to frustrate this purpose until 1949 when the relationship was formalized.
That year was a climactic one for the Associated Blind on several fronts. In 1948 the ABM first became an organization of separate chapters -- the first one in Worcester, with Raoul Goguen as its president, and the second one later in the same year in Springfield under the energetic leadership of Newton Ottone.
It was in 1948, also, that Bill Taylor of Pennsylvania called on ABM Secretary Little to interest him in the White Cane bill which had already been enacted in several states. Following a committee hearing and debate in the legislature, the progressive measure became state law. That success appeared to open the floodgates; on its heels came such victories as the $50 exempt earnings measure; a vending stand bill; a transportation permit bill; tax reduction on home property of blind persons; abatement of license for door-to-door selling, and free general hospital care for the needy blind.
A striking example of the ABM's determination came in 1953, when the director of the state Division of the Blind, John Mungovan, was notified by the Governor that he would not be reappointed when his term expired in July. The governor had named as his successor a woman without training, knowledge or experience in the office. The governor's action provoked a mass protest meeting by the organized blind in one of Boston's main hotels. One leader of the ABM was quoted in several newspapers, and editorials appeared criticizing the governor. As a consequence the governor decided to retain the incumbent director, and his prospective replacement discreetly withdrew.
During the 1950's, stimulated by the energies of Charles Little, among others, the Associated Blind continued to grow. Chapters were organized in Westfield, Holyoke, Brockton and Lawrence, and later in Fall River and Greenfield-Athol. In most cases, the brunt of organizational work in the chapters was shouldered by a single outstanding personality: Ottone in Springfield, Goguen in Worcester -- "and in Brockton," as Charles Little tells it, "a very courageous spirit, Barbara Levitt, who despite being blind and confined to a wheelchair became the first chapter president and remained so for a number of years."
Among the distinguished line of state presidents who followed George Lucier were: Henry Jones, Merril Maynard, Concezio Ferelli, Herman Blair, Thomas Palmer, Raoul Goguen, Charles Little Newton Ottone, John Nagle, Barnard Levin, Anita O'Shea, and Manuel Rubin.
The silver anniversary celebration drew 318 persons to the convention banquet, with attendance almost as high during the other sessions. Among the commendations received by the ABM on its Silver Anniversary was an embossed copy of a resolution by the Massachusetts House of Representatives "congratulating the Associated Blind of Massachusetts on its Twenty-fifth Anniversary.” The official message read in part:
"Whereas organized in 1940 for the purpose of enabling sightless people to unite and work together in the solution of their common problem, to take an active part in affairs affecting their lives, and to promote in all ways possible the economic and social welfare of the blind; and
"Whereas the philosophy of the Associated Blind of Massachusetts is that blind people are essentially normal, and that blindness in itself is not a mental or psychological handicap, and that social discrimination because of blindness must be abolished; therefore be it
"Resolved, that the Massachusetts House of Representatives hereby approves and applauds the ABM on its philosophy and ideals, congratulates it on its 25th anniversary, and wishes it continued success in all its programs."
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Marcus Roberson, president of the Lone Star State Federation of the Blind, reports that his organization held a convention in San Antonio, October 23. It was an occasion for much organizational soul-searching. In a speech entitled "Diagnosis and Remedy", Marcus analyzed the past difficulties of the Lone Star State Federation under such headings as Leadership", "Lack of Money", "Members not Converted", and "Internal Division".
The future course of the organization was mapped out in a series of important resolutions. One of these declared: "That it pledge itself and reaffirm its faith and confidence in the National Federation of the Blind and its officers; and, That the Lone Star State Federation of the Blind agrees to reorganize the Lone Star so as to perfect an affiliate in Texas which would be honored and respected and serve as a model and an example to other state affiliates." A second directed that: "a definite fund raising program be instituted and put into effect immediately and maintained and supported year by year. Still a third resolution instructed the Board of Directors to renew the organization's legislative program. Plans were formulated to publicize the credit union established in 1958. Cooperation and mutual assistance were proferred the new director of the state commission for the blind, Bert L. Risley.
In these noble aspirations and energetic proposals we wish Marcus and his organization the fullest possible consummation.
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By John Nagle
I shook hands with the President of the United States.
The time was October 7, 1965. The place: the Cabinet Room of the White House, The occasion: The signing by President Johnson of the White Cane Safety Day Proclamation.
It was a proud moment for me--a day I shall never forget.
I was present, along with some two dozen other specially invited guests, in the very room where Abraham Lincoln had first read his Proclamation of Emancipation, and where so many other historic events had occurred.
This is how it came about. I was on vacation in Massachusetts when my secretary called from Washington to tell me I had received a telegram of invitation from the White House to attend the Presidential signing of the White Cane Proclamation. Here I had been working since early August with White House staff people, trying to arrange for the scheduling of this event -- and the announcement had to come with me away from the Capital and on vacation!
October 7 was a torrentially rainy day in Washington, and I left ray office early for the eventful appointment. When I reached the northwest gate of the White House, I showed the guard my invitation telegram; he made a telephone call to verify it, and then escorted me to the White House Press Room -- the noisiest and busiest place I have entered since my arrival in Washington many years ago.
After waiting far past the time set for the signing ceremony, the other guests and I were shown into the Cabinet Room. The impressive chamber soon filled with newsmen and cameramen representing news papers, magazines, press associations, radio and TV networks.
There was an excitement in the air, a feeling of anticipation building up inside me, which I could sense in others as well. We were all waiting for the President of the United States to arrive -- and all I could think of at the moment was: "What a thing to happen to a small-town lawyer from Massachusetts!"
Then, abruptly, everyone stopped talking and all noise ceased -- except for the cameras, which now began to buzz and whirr. Lyndon Baines Johnson, the President of the United States, had entered the room.
In a low, evidently tired voice, he read the proclamation. Standing only a few feet from the President, I was stirred by the words he used to describe the meaning of White Cane Safety Day. He did not refer to the blind in terms of pity or dependency; he did not call for charity or shelter. He did not speak of the White Cane as a symbol of deterioration -- but rather as "a symbol of determination." And he said this:
"Too many blind people are condemned to a life of frustration because we have been unwilling to accept the fact that they can do more. Today, we know from experience that blind people can master such diverse occupations as teaching, sales, computer work, public relations, journalism, and law.
"Only last month I had the pleasure of appointing a blind man to the Federal bench. And yet, too many of these people are making brooms and wicker furniture because no one has given them a chance to do anything else.
"We must move forward in this area. We must understand that blind people want to live normal, productive lives -- that they have the ability to do so. "
When he had finished reading his statement. President Johnson sat down at the head of the large table around which the Cabinet meets, and began signing the White Cane Safety Day Proclamation. And as the President signed his name, I leaned against the back of his chair.
Picking up a pen, the President made a small stroke of his signature and then handed the pen to one of the invited guests, shaking his hand at the same time. He repeated this action for each of the guests in the room.
As I waited my turn, I tried to think of some momentous thing to say to the President -- some profound phrase about blind people that would be historically equal to the occasion. When the moment came, and the President handed me a pen and grasped my hand, I found myself saying: "I am John Nagle, Mr., President. We shall all be much concerned for you tomorrow." For the next day the Chief Executive was to be operated on, and an atmosphere of worry and foreboding had overtaken Washington.
The President thanked me for my expression of concern.
As I listened to the others meet the President, I heard them one by one thank him "in behalf of the blind of America" -- and as I thought back over my own words, spoken spontaneously, I realized I had acted and spoken as a citizen meeting his President, rather than as a blind person or as a spokesman for blind people.
As tangible evidence that I did indeed actually meet President Johnson, I have my souvenir pen. It is an Eversharp, made in the United States. It is dark blue in color, contains gold ink and has imprinted on the barrel the Presidential Seal and the signature of the President.
A White House aide handed me a small cardboard box in which to keep the pen, and a slip of paper bearing these words: "One of the pens used by the President, October 7, 1965, in signing a Proclamation entitled 'White Cane Safety Day, 1965."
Following the White House ceremony, I boarded a plane for Boston to attend the 25th anniversary convention of the Associated Blind of Massachusetts, where I soon discovered how wise I had been to leave my souvenir pen at home -- for several people at the convention tried hard to fast-talk me out of it.
Quite a few people told me, during that convention weekend, that they had seen the signing of the White Cane Safety Day Proclamation on national television. This, as far as I was concerned, made the memorable event complete: for the chief purpose of the National
Federation in seeking the proclamation was to gain national attention and recognition of the White Cane as "a symbol of determination" just as President Johnson said it was.
That meeting in the White House not only made news. It made history, I am proud to have been a small part of that history.
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A unique radio series of twelve 15-minute programs focusing on successful professional careers opened up by blind persons in the Cleveland area was inaugurated this fall on Station WJW, according to the News-letter of the Cleveland Society for the Blind. The article has been sent to us by Mrs. Edna Fillinger of Cleveland's Mutual Federation of the Blind, an affiliate of the Ohio Council and the National Federation.
The Saturday evening programs, scheduled to end November 27, are conducted by Jim Boswell, himself visually handicapped and a former student at Ohio University, James Storer, an owner of the Storer Broadcasting Company who is also visually handicapped, was reportedly instrumental in organizing the radio series.
Boswell's interviews have featured blind persons representing a remarkable variety of professional careers. Among them are: Robert Wiesenberger, candidate for the City Council; Melvin Falke, real estate broker; Dr. Charles Hallenbeck, chief psychologist, Highland View Hospital; Dr. Daniel Williams, head, department of physical medicine. Bay View Hospital; Mitchell Darling, sales representative, New York Life Insurance Company; Nicholas De Caprio, professor of psychology, John Carroll University; Kay Howard, assistant professor of history, John Carroll University; Charles Sanders, head, utility and maintenance department, NASA; Miller Thoss, sales representative. Crown Envelope Company; Warren Sladky, head, Wessian Specialties; Victor Leanzo, teacher-counselor, Cleveland Heights high school; and Judge Milton
Holmes, Justice, Rocky River Municipal Court.
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By Gerold McGill
Between 60 and 70 members and delegates attended the 13th annual convention of the Indiana Council of the Blind held October 8, through October 10, 1965, at the Van Orman Hotel. Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Among the speakers were Mrs. Diane Stuebing from the University of Cincinnati who spoke on the Braille computer program for the blind, and Dr. Alfred Wick, who talked on modern advancements in the field of eye research.
The banquet was attended by 60 people, and the banquet address was given by Attorney J. Byron Hayes who represented Governor Branigan.
Three resolutions were adopted: one dealing with ways for blind people to make money and earn a living; one calling for a home for the elderly blind; and the third in respect for the memorable convention put on by the Fort Wayne Council of the Blind.
The following officers were elected: president, John Janssens, 1229 West Bruce Street, South Bend; vice-president, Bernard Hollander, Evansville; recording secretary, Mrs. Peggy Light, Fort Wayne; social secretary, Mrs. Dora Hambrock, Fort Wayne; treasurer, Ed Dienneman, Indianapolis.
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The State of Illinois, we are often told, is in dire financial straits. So how do we come to grips with the problem? It's very simple. We will take the food from the mouths of the state's elderly poor. This is not idle prattle, this is something that is happening to some 22,000 Illinois senior citizens who, through the chance of fate, must depend upon public welfare to stay alive.
Last July, Congress authorized a 7 per cent increase in the size of Social Security payments, adding up to about five dollars a month for recipients. But the Illinois Public Aid Department, in one of its fleeting moments of thrift, decreed that the modest increase would be kept by the state to lower the overall cost of public aid.
At a time when the cost of bacon has rocketed to 90 cents a pound, the dollar looks small. But to one of our aging reliefers, a dollar is the difference between a breakfast of nothing more than coffee or a lunch of thin soup without crackers.
The way the state figures it, our oldsters are supposed to feed themselves on 78 cents a day; spend 6 cents a day for heating or cooking gas; 8 cents for electricity; 6 cents for such things as bed sheets, dishes and soap; and 15 cents a day for clothing. Throw in rent money and it adds up to about $122 a month -- and the state figures that's enough. The state also figures it would be unfair to everyone else on public aid if our oldsters pick up a spare five dollars a month or $1.25 a week.
In the meantime, we are shot gunning millions of dollars into a poverty war built on the idea that money can "eliminate the paradox of poverty in the midst of plenty in this nation" and Washington talks nobly of "an opportunity to live in dignity and decency." We feel a certain sense of indignation, then, when we hear about public funds being spent for frosting when many can't afford cake ... or crumbs for that matter.
When poverty planners for Harlem district of New York Rep. Adam Clayton Powell mapped out their program, they did it at a luxurious mountain resort. Their expenses included $350 for catering services, $90 for liquor, $14.50 for one coffee break, $12.85 to rent a tuxedo for the poverty chief and $63.20 for flowers.
Where were the thrift thinkers when our own legislature appropriated half a million dollars for a commission to think about ways to celebrate the state's one-hundred-and-fiftieth anniversary in 1968? Or, in our own backyard, how do our old people -- who haven't the bus fare to see the city's sights -- enjoy the bubbling fountains at the new lakefront filtration plant. The city says it doesn't know exactly how much the fountain cost . . . they're part of two-million, eight-hundred thousand dollars spent to pretty up the place with promenades, railings and such.
We say give our aged poor their five dollars a month. For one thing they earned it during their working days when they were young. Moreover, for three dollars a month they can buy voluntary Medicare insurance and that will save the state thousands of dollars in hospital costs when major illness dips into the ranks of these old people.
These people are short on time and resources. They deserve -- in the words of the poverty war -- whatever dignity and decency we can give them. We do not credit the state with thrift in this instance. We accuse the state of being unwise.
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The 8th Annual Convention of the Council of New Jersey Organizations of the Blind was held at the Empress Motel, Asbury. All nine Chapters were represented with an attendance of 103 persons at the morning session.
President Myles Crosby reported a very good year in the way of progress for the blind.
A bill to license distributors and sellers of blind-made articles had been signed into law by Governor Richard J. Hughes, making it more difficult for imposters to prey upon the public.
President Crosby also reported that Mr. Joseph Kohn had been appointed Executive Director for the New Jersey State Commission for the Blind. He also reported that plans are still going forward for a Library for the Blind in New Jersey.
A Bulletin has been organized by the Council and will be issued quarterly with it's official name to be announced shortly.
There has been a Forum again this year between the Organized Blind and the New Jersey Commission for the Blind. It is expected that this will be an annual event.
In recommending things for the future, President Crosby suggested that a study of the New Jersey welfare laws be made with an eye towards improving those parts which will improve conditions for the blind. He suggested that vending stand laws might be improved through recommendations of the Council, and it should be noted that vending machines on premises with blind-operated vending stands, should be a part of the blind vending stand operator's business.
The Saturday afternoon session was a lively one with many questions answered in regard to the New Jersey Commission for the Blind with an emphasis on Home-Bound Industries, now under the direction of Mr. Daniel Sullivan.
The assembly also took the opportunity to ask Mr. Benjamin Sandberg of the Monmouth County Social Security Board many questions on Social Security Amendments.
The Saturday evening banquet, attended by 12Z people, was highlighted by a talk by William F. McCormick, past Director of Lions International. His topic was "Progress Through Communications". The Master of Ceremonies was John V. Hinds, Jr.
Taking a leaf out of the N. F. B.’s book, drawings for prizes were conducted throughout the Convention, much to the delight of most of the people, especially the winners.
On Sunday a resolution was passed to work for the abolition of relatives' responsibility for recipients of blind assistance.
The Camden Blind Association was officially welcomed to the Council.
Officers named for the coming year were: president, Myles Crosby, 32 East Englewood Avenue, Englewood 07631 (re-elected to 4th term); 1st vice-president, Harold Daiker (re-elected to 2nd term); 2nd vice-president, Eugene Kirkland (elected to 1st term); secretary, Vennie Fedelin (elected to 1st term); treasurer, Henry Duser (re-elected to 3rd term). The three appointed members to the Executive Board were Beverly Hendrickson, Stanley Spaide, and Lois Forstner.
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The new superintendent of the Missouri School for the Blind in St. Louis is Maurice D. Olsen, who, for the last 6 years has been executive secretary of the American Association of Instructors for the Blind.
Rotary printing apparatus is now available commercially from Great Britain to print braille in solid plastic dots. The principal advantage of this system is that the braille is crush proof and occupies less than half the shelf space, presumably because it is possible to use lighter weight paper. The initial cost is higher than that of a standard braille press, but the operating costs are lower. This equipment has been in use by the Royal National Institute of the Blind for the last 3 years.
The New York Association for the Blind has established a 2-year piano tuning and technology course under the direction of Kenneth Serviss, a graduate of the Piano Hospital in Vancouver, Washington.
A long-time federationist, Lyle Von Erichsen was married on September 18, to Mrs. Mirrion Emily Bruce, in Spokane, Washington. Lyle is a past president of the Washington State Association of the Blind and is a member of the NFB's Board of Directors. The couple will make their home at North 4923 Crestline Avenue, Spokane, Washington.
Mr. Shahid Ahmed Memon, 1. G/0/6 Nazimabad, Karachi, No. Pakistan, would like to develop pen friendships with other blind persons. He is 21 years old and has completed training in cane and basketry. He is working at an adult blind center and also is enrolled as a student for his B. A. Degree.
From one of our Connecticut members: "In the special edition of the MONITOR I used the information regarding disability insurance for the blind. I took the magazine with me to the Social Security and read to them the part concerning the blind worker who does not have enough quarters to qualify for social security -- that is, the older blind. They said that I had information which they did not have as yet. I made out an application. The MONITOR keeps us right up to date."
The White Cane Chapter of the Kentucky Federation of the Blind in Ashland, Kentucky, is providing the Thanksgiving Dinner for the boys of the near-by Boys' Farm Three items in this issue of the MONITOR have been supplied by the Henry Sloan's of New York City. Why don't you try to do as well? The 1965 convention of the Progressive Blind of Missouri will be held at the Aladdin Hotel, Kansas City, Missouri, November 19-21.
Overtones, a braille music magazine published by the New York Association for the Blind, 111 East 59th Street, New York, N. Y. 10022, will shift from a quarterly to a bi-monthly publication in the near future. Price $2 a year.
Coventry, England, Oct. 9 -- Former British middleweight champion Mick Leahy, 30, has lost the sight of his left eye following an auto crash 12 days ago and will not box again. Leahy reigned as middleweight champ from May, 1963, until last December when he lost the title to Wally Swift.
Deaf-blind people can tell when the doorbell rings by using a British engineer's invention. They feel the sympathetic vibrations of a finger ring Los Angeles, Sept. 26 -- Ground was broken this week for the $5 million Jules Stein Eye Institute at the Medical Center of the University of California, Los Angeles. The five story building will be completed in 1966. The institute will house research scientists and ophthalmologists devoted to eye research, education, and patient care. It is named after the chairman of the board of the Music Corporation of America who donated $1,250,000 to the institute fund. Other donors included motion picture actors and various business concerns and foundations.
A number of Arab countries, among them Libya, Jordan and Saudi Arabia, may soon participate in a "talking books" scheme for the blind pioneered in Britain 30 years ago. The program, the Nuffield Talking Book Library, took its name from the British philanthropist, who provided some of the funds. Some 1,000 titles have been recorded on tape by the library. Membership in Britain is free, members paying only a small annual rental fee for the machines on which they play the tapes. If Arab countries adopt the scheme, the tapes will be made in formal Arabic so that they may be interchangeable in Arab countries generally.
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