THE BRAILLE MONITOR

DECEMBER 1967

INKPRINT EDITION

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

Monitor Headquarters 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708.

Published monthly in braille and distributed free to the blind by the National Federation of the Blind, President: Jacobus tenBroek, 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708.

Inkprint edition produced and distributed by the National Federation of the Blind.

Editor: Jacobus tenBroek, 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708.

News items and changes of address should be sent to the Editor.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

NFB DISABILITY INSURANCE BILL

SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE REPORT

SENATE FLOOR DISCUSSION ON THE HARTKE AMENDMENT

NFB CONVENTION BULLETIN

WORKERS STRIKE CALIFORNIA SHELTERED SHOPS

ARIZONA CONVENTION
by James R. Carlock

WELFARE RESIDENCY RULE HIT AGAIN

COURT OPINION - Harrell et al V. Tobriner

GUIDE DOG HELD FOR RANSOM

GUARANTEED INCOME TO BE TESTED

MEXICO HOLIDAY
by Kenneth Jernigan

OHIO CONVENTION
by Clyde Ross

NEW LANGUAGE OF THE HANDS

HOUSE HEARINGS ON NATIONAL EYE INSTITUTE
by John Nagle

NEW HAWAII AFFILIATE FOR NFB

BLIND MAN ADMITS HE HARBORED DRAFT EVADERS

STATEMENT OF MISSION AND GAOLS

CALIFORNIA CONVENTION
by Michael Yale

THE BLIND 'SEE' SCIENCE MUSEUM

TEACHERS NEEDED FOR MONTANA SUMMER SCHOOL

LIGHTHOUSE, UNION REACH AGREEMENT

TWO SCHOOLS JOIN TO TRAIN BLIND, DEAF CHILDREN
by Linda Mathews

NEW JERSEY CONVENTION

INFANTS BLINDED BY INFECTION GET NEW HOPE
by Effie Alley

BLIND POPULATION IN ENGLAND AND WALES -1966

DECEPTIVE DEMEANOR

BLIND MICHIGANDER SERVES ON JURY

NEVADA CONVENTION

SURGEONS WHO EYE THE SCORE

THE BLIND WORK FOR UNCLE SAM

SCIENTISTS TO TEST BLOOD CLOT FIGHTER
by Arthur J. Snider

HEARING HELD ON BOARD OF DIRECTORS - ASSOCIATION OF THE BLIND

U.S. NOISE LEVEL CAN CAUSE A LOSS OF HEARING
by Richard D. Lyons

BATTERY OPERATED DISC PLAYER

MONITOR MINIATURES

IFB BULLETIN

NFB DISABILITY INSURANCE BILL

Probably as you read the December issue of the BRAILLE MONITOR the Congress of the United States will have completed action on the 1967 Social Security bill. Whether that action will include our disability amendment will depend on the outcome of the Senate -House Conference Committee meetings which, at this time, are expected to occur during the first two weeks of December. Meanwhile, however, all but the final chapter is ready to be told.

Despite the fact that several dozen Congressmen introduced identical bills containing our disability amendment, and even despite the fact that two leading Congressmen on the House Ways and Means Committee have done so, the House Social Security bill did not adopt our proposal. In the Senate, however, the story was quite different. On November 2nd the Senate Finance Committee adopted our disability insurance bill as an amendment to H. R. 12080, the House-passed measure. It did so by voice vote and without any strong opposition. Twice before when the Senate had adopted our proposal, once when it was sponsored by Senator Hubert Humphrey and a second the when sponsored by Senator Vance Hartke, the action was taken on the Senate floor over the objection of the Finance Committee. Thus this year's adoption by the Senate Finance Committee immeasurably improved the chances of final Congressional enactment.

As adopted by the Senate Finance Committee, our proposal contained its three standard features: changing the definition of blindness to that used in the public assistance portions of the Social Security Act; making blind persons eligible for disability payments after six quarters of employment in covered work; allowing blind people to receive these benefits as long as blindness continues irrespective of earnings.

When the Senate Finance Committee report appeared on November 16, however, it revealed that although our bill had been adopted in full, the committee staff people in preparing the report, so interpreted the bill in reference to the provisions of law that blind persons with any gainful employment would still be denied benefits under our bill. This error was corrected by a "perfecting" amendment offered by Senator Hartke on the Senate floor the 21st of November, accepted by the Finance Committee Chairman, Senator Long, and approved by the Senate.

The report of the Senate Finance Committee and the floor discussion over the "perfecting" amendment are set forth in full in the next two items.

Back to Contents

SENATE FINANCE COMMITTEE REPORT

(h) Payment of disability benefits to industrially blind persons with six quarters of coverage earned at any time

The committee's bill adds a new provision which would modify the disability insurance provisions to improve cash benefit protection for the blind.

Under present law, a person who meets the insured status requirements and the definition of blindness--essentially total blindness–may become entitled to a disability freeze. To qualify for disability benefits the totally blind person must meet the definition of disability in present law: (a) inability to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment that has lasted or is expected to last for 12 months or to end in death, or if aged 55 or over, (b) inability to engage in substantial gainful activity requiring skills or abilities comparable to those of any gainful activity in which he had previously engaged with some regularity and over a substantial period of time. (An older blind worker found to be disabled under the alternative definition, however, cannot receive disability benefits for any month in which he engages in substantial gainful activity regardless of whether or not it involves his usual skills or abilities.)

In recognition of the economic hardships faced by blind persons, the bill would change the definition of disability to permit persons with "industrial blindness" (that is visual acuity of 20/200 or less) to meet the definition regardless of their capacity to work, and to receive disability benefits for any month in which they do not engage in substantial gainful activity. This definition of blindness is the definition in the Internal Revenue Code and is used by a number of governmental and private agencies.

This provision would also modify the disability insured status requirements so that industrially blind persons could qualify for a period of disability and for disability benefits on the basis of a relatively small amount of covered employment. To be insured for disability protection under present law a worker must be fully insured and generally must have a total of 20 quarters of coverage out of the 40 calendar quarters ending with the quarter in which he becomes disabled. There is one exception to the 20-out-of-40 requirement: the worker who becomes disabled before age 31 because of blindness as defined in present law is insured for disability protection if he has quarters of coverage in half the quarters after age 21 and up to and including the quarter of disablement, with a minimum of six quarters of coverage. (Another provision of the committee bill would extend this alternative requirement to all workers disabled before age 31.)

While the disability insured status requirements of present law (as modified for young workers) are, generally speaking, reasonable tests designed to provide some assurance that the protection afforded by the disability provisions of the law will be related to loss of covered earnings on account of disability, they do not seem appropriate for the blind person, who faces employment problems not encountered by sighted persons.

Many blind persons can secure only temporary jobs, jobs being automated out of existence, and jobs requiring very little skill. Blind persons may be the last hired and the first to lose their jobs. These factors make it very difficult for blind persons to meet the 20 out of 40 quarters rule. The bill, therefore, provides that persons who are industrially blind will be insured if they have as few as six quarters of coverage, earned at any time.

Under present law, disability benefits are not payable after attainment of age 65 but the beneficiary (being fully insured to meet one of the requirements for disability benefits) becomes entitled to old-age benefits. The bill permits industrially blind persons who have six quarters of coverage to continue to receive disability insurance benefits beyond age 65, and since these benefits are disability rather than retirement benefits they will not be subject to deductions under the retirement test. On the other hand no benefits can be paid for any month in which a blind person engages in substantial gainful activity. The bill would also exclude these blind persons from the requirement of present law that disability benefits be suspended for any months during which a beneficiary refuses without good cause to accept vocational rehabilitation services.

This provision would be effective for December 1968. About 205,000 persons--blind workers and their dependents--would become immediately eligible for monthly benefits. Benefit payments in the first 12 months of operations under this provision are estimated to total $165 million.

Back to Contents

SENATE FLOOR DISCUSSION ON HARTKE AMENDMENT

Mr. HARTKE. Mr. President, I send an amendment to the desk.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The amendment will be stated. The assistant legislative clerk proceeded to read the amendment.

Mr. HARTKE. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that further reading of the amendment be dispensed with.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered, and the amendment will be printed in the RECORD.

The amendment, ordered to be printed in the RECORD, is as follows :

On page 219. between lines 19 and 20, insert the following: "(4) The last sentence of section 223 (a)(1) of such Act is repealed. "

Mr. HARTKE. Mr. President, this is a technical amendment to the bill.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. How much time does the Senator yield to himself?

Mr. HARTKE. Mr. President, I yield myself 2 minutes.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator is recognized.

Mr. HARTKE. Mr. President, I have no intention to ask for a rollcall vote.

This is a measure which was introduced on the floor of the Senate and which had over 46 cosponsors. It was introduced into committee and adopted. However, when it was adopted, the committee bill was intended to accomplish three goals: first, revision of the definition of blindness; second, reduce the number of required quarters; and, third, eliminate the requirement for meeting "inability to work" provisions by substituting merely meeting the blindness definition provisions.

What did not occur in the drafting was the striking of the provision which provided that for any month a blind person was employed, he could not receive disability. Yet the blind person is disabled by the fact that, even if he works, he must frequently hire sight in his employment. He is unable to attain employment of any significance without incurring nnore expenses than the average worker. This is a disadvantage and a disability.

If the amendment is to be effective, the blind must have some incentive to work. We have eliminated the "ability to work" provisions, and yet this alone would only encourage idleness if the blind cannot receive benefits merely by their disability; they will be reluctant to enter employment when their earnings will usually be small and meager, especially after having to hire sight.

Mr. President, this is a minor change of one-hundredth of 1 percent.

Mr. HICKENLOOPER. Mr. President, is this amendment printed?

Mr. HARTKE. The amendment is at the desk.

Mr. HICKENLOOPER. Is the amendment printed and is a copy available? I do not know what is in the amendment.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The amendment is not printed.

Who yields time?

Mr. LONG of Louisiana. Mr. President, as I understand the matter, the pending amendment involves an amendment the Senator offered in committee which was agreed to regarding liberalization of benefits to the blind. The committee opposed that measure on the floor of the Senate last year and the Senate agreed to the amendment notwithstanding that opposition.

That being the case, Mr. President, I assume that the Senate would look at the matter in the same way. That is one reason I was persuaded to vote for the amendment in committee, believing that was what the Senate would want to do since the Senate expressed itself, although I did oppose it as did other Senators last year.

The Senator seeks by this amendment to deal with a matter that he believes was an oversight in the amendment he offered in committee.

Mr. HARTKE. The Senator is correct.

Mr. LONG of Louisiana. The matter would be in conference. In view of the fact that we agreed to the amendment, in committee, I am not opposed to the pending amendment which seeks to perfect the committee amendment. The Senator is merely trying to amend the provision which had been offered and accepted in committee.

The committee amendment would increase the bill by $165 million, and the pending matter would up it $20 million, but I understand that is about the amount that the Senate voted for last year.

Mr. HARTKE. If this perfecting amendment is agreed to, it is identical to the amendment which was adopted last year.

Mr. LONG of Louisiana. When I voted for the amendment in committee I thought I was agreeing to accept the will of the Senate last year after we debated the matter heatedly. I do not oppose the amendment.

It will be in conference.

Mr. HARTKE. I yield back my remaining time.

Mr. LONG of Louisiana, I yield back my remaining time.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The question is on agreeing to the amendment of the Senator from Indiana. [Putting the question.]

The amendment was agreed to.

Back to Contents

NFB CONVENTION BULLETIN

Come one, come all! Recent NFB Conventions have been getting bigger and better every year. 1968 will be no exception. Read the following and you will see why we think so;

The Convention will be held in Des Moines, Iowa, at the Fort Des Moines Hotel, during the week of Monday, July 1. Hospitality (Midwestern style) will abound. The first business session will open at 10 o'clock on the morning of Tuesday, July 2, and the final session will adjourn at 5 o'clock on Friday afternoon, July 5. The Executive Committee meeting (open to everyone) will occur on Monday, July 1, at 10 A. M. Both the Membership Committee and the Correspondents Committee will meet on Monday afternoon, as will the Resolutions Committee. The Blind Merchants Committee will meet Monday evening. Again, it should be emphasized that all of these meetings are open to everyone. In fact, each state is urged to have at least one person in attendance at both the Membership Committee meeting and the Correspondents Committee meeting. In other words, Monday, July 1, will be one of the busiest days of the Convention. In keeping with the custom of recent years, most of the members and delegates will probably want to arrive sometime Sunday, June 30.

HOTEL

The hotel rates are extremely favorable--in fact, "unbelievable" is the only appropriate word. We have not had rates like this for at least the last seventeen years. The rates are: Single rooms, $5.25; doubles, $7.50; and twins, $9.75. For an extra bed for a third person in the room, $3.00. There will be no charge for children under 14 in a room with parents. The Fort Des Moines is a fine hotel, with excellent accommodations, air-conditioned throughout.

BANQUET

The banquet will occur at 7 o'clock on Thursday evening, July 4. The price is $4.50 and the menu will be good. Plans are shaping up for a memorable banquet program.

TOURS

The day for tours is Wednesday, July 3, and we promise you an interesting afternoon. You will visit the Iowa Commission for the Blind Building and see the program in operation. Tours are also planned to other points of interest.

GENERAL COMMENTS

The drawing of prizes, which was such a whopping success at Los Angeles, will be even bigger and better this year. Don't be late for the sessions, and don't leave the meeting room. The prizes will be worth winning. A word is in order to state and local affiliates: We would like to have as many prizes as possible to be used in the drawings. We are recommending that prizes be worth $25.00 or more. In fact, at Los Angeles, many of the state and local affiliates gave prizes of real value--a tape recorder, a chiming clock, a typewriter, hair-seal wallets, electrical appliances, household items, jewelry, champagne, bourbon, and many others. It is not too early to collect prizes. Send them to Manuel Urena, 525 Fourth Street, Des Moines, Iowa.

Iowa is truly a wonderful state and the members of the Iowa Association of the Blind will do their best to make your stay in Des Moines truly unforgettable. It will be a convention to remember and cherish, so get on the ball; Send for your reservations today No, don't wait until tomorrow; send requests for reservations to: Reservations Manager, Fort Des Moines Hotel, Des Moines, Iowa 50329. Be sure to indicate that you will be attending the NFB Convention. Otherwise you may have problems in receiving the special rate.

By the way, don't forget we are making big plans for those who want to go to Mexico. The trip is all set.

Plans for the 1969 Convention in Columbia, South Carolina are well under way. We are meeting at the Wade Hampton Hotel, and it will be good.

Back to Contents

WORKERS STRIKE CALIFORNIA SHELTERED SHOPS

On Wednesday morning, November 1st, the workers of the three state-operated California Industries for the Blind sheltered shops appeared at their respective establishments --but not to go to work. They came to take their places on the picket line. In an unprecedented and concerted move, the workers of the Berkeley, Los Angeles and San Diego sheltered workshops had joined together and called a strike to press their demands for a 4. 9 per cent wage raise, a sick leave plan, and a six dollar per month state contributory health insurance plan--benefits already enjoyed by other State employees.

The decision to strike came as a result of continually thwarted efforts to obtain these benefits through administrative and legislative channels, coupled with the obvious insistence on the part of the Department of Rehabilitation not only to deny the workers these benefits, but not even to give the proposals sincere consideration. Several bills aimed at obtaining long sought improvements in the CIB program were submitted in the 1967 Legislature. As a result of Administration and Rehab opposition, most of these bills never had a chance. One bill which was passed by the Legislature gave blind and handicapped workers in the shops a 4.9 percent wage raise, equal to a raise granted civil service workers in the shops. Again, a recommendation from the Department of Rehabilitation Director that the Governor veto this bill sealed its doom. The Governor obliged with the veto and the workers were once more pushed aside. The Governor's veto letter was filled with worn-out rehab arguments and stereotype reasoning. As a result it was made quite clear to the workers that the Department intended to hang fast to the old guard policies that have kept California Rehabilitation services to the blind at a lamentably low level of performance. The evasive and irresponsive attitude, an almost complete deafness to the needs and proposals of the workers, was obviously going to be a continued pattern of administration.

It was inevitable that the workers would have to force the issue and take drastic action if they were to be heard at all. What was to the workers a last-ditch conference with the Department of Rehabilitation leaders was held on Tuesday afternoon, October 24. Participating were Robert Howard, Director of the Department of Rehabilitation, David Mendelson, Chief of the Division for the Blind, and William Taylor, Operations Manager of the CIB shops. The workers were represented by the leaders of the three local unions of the State Employees Union, Local 411, two officials of the state-wide Union 411, the presidents of three workers' chapters of the California Council of the Blind, and Anthony G. Mannino, President of the California Council of the Blind. Again, it was a futile and fruitless meeting. The workers and the representatives were told by the rehab officials that, "we did not come to negotiate" and that "the name of the game is rehabilitation, " This was the end of the road as far as the workers were concerned.

The state-wide strike was called for Wednesday morning, November 1, by the workers in all three shops. Every avenue of negotiation had been explored and exhausted. They had no other choice.

The Los Angeles story is told by Howard Porter, President of the Blind Workers Guild. "Rehab's complacency and unawareness was further exposed when local management read a memorandum from the Sacramento office which stated that these centers were places of training and of production. If a work stoppage were to go into effect, contracts would be lost, etc. That did it for sure. On that historic November 1, we hit the bricks--a strike. The news media people swooped down upon us. They were just great--news reporters from papers, radio broadcasters, and TV sound cameras with their news staffmen, came from everywhere to get the story, and they covered it magnificently. The spirit and enthusiasm along our picket line was contagious. It was an inspiration and a revelation. Every time a delivery truck drove up, and many did, one of our marchers would call out, 'friend or foe?' The answer was invariably, 'we won't cross your picket line.' At noon of the first day, a large group of us left the shop area and went to the State Office Building to demonstrate. Again, the reception was tremendous. A few of us went inside to the rehab offices to deposit leaflets containing our modest list of particulars and left without a word. Offers of help from other labor unions and organizations poured in. Some sent personnel, others provided food and refreshments for the people on the picket lines; the President of the California Council of the Blind joined the union leaders and workers in presenting background facts to the news media reporters on the scene. The united action of all three CIB shops was most effective and gratifying. The workers "were courageous and determined to stand firm until rehab should agree to talk and settle upon terms."

Joe Zerr, President of the Blind Production Workers Guild of San Diego, reported that the same twin operation was being carried out in that city. "Only three workers crossed our line," said Joe, "and a couple of non-union trucks moved in for a pickup. We more than made up for this by going to the State Building for a demonstration there. Then we heard that Governor Reagan was going to be at the Coronado Hotel to make a speech at a fund-raising dinner. We made it our business to go to the hotel and put on a fine demonstration there for all to witness--the press, radio, and television. I'm sure the Governor knew we were there, too. There was no mistaking the seriousness of the workers. The waits have been too long, and the promises too many. Now we wanted action and gainful results. All the workers pulling together was the only way we could win. Our Los Angeles and Berkeley co-workers were miles away from us, but we knew we were all on the line at the same time, and for the same things."

On reporting the events that took place at the Berkeley shop, Sid Urcna says that on Wednesday, the first day of the strike, publicity on radio and television were the major items, besides the fine turnout on the picket line. "On Thursday," he said, "things were pretty quiet until about 9:00 a.m. At this time, we were notified of the management's intentions to make some deliveries on the state truck. Since it was state equipment and on state property, we agreed to it on the condition that the truck be loaded in front of the building. The reason for this was simple. All other organizations were expecting a picket, and we did not wish to discriminate. Needless to say, the manager did not agree, and began to load the truck in the dock area. By mere coincidence, Mrs. Martha Rains, Mr. James Hardamon and I became ill and dropped in front of the truck. The police were summoned. We did not know whether we we were going to be run over, taken to jail, or possibly both. After having upset a great many of the people, the manager decided that nothing would be moved. Friday, November 3, was probably a day which will never be forgotten, in view of the fact that the Department had yielded to negotiating with the union. At the same time, however, the workers were making plans for escalation. Monday, November 6, was a most exciting day and perhaps most gratifying in view of the fact that by this time a number of other unions had offered their assistance. On Monday, a special meeting was called. The Department had made a proposal but consistent with their acts of the past, it was full of loopholes and would have only applied to about 25% of the people. Therefore, it was rejected."

With the rejection by the workers of the three shops of the Monday conference proposals, the conferees met again on Tuesday, November 7. From this meeting came the agreement accepted by the Workers' Union representatives and the Rehab Department officials. The agreement gave the blind workers a sick leave plan of 1/2 day per month to an accumulated maximum of 90 days; a $6 per month contributory health plan to be worked out as soon as possible, and an Evaluation Committee to study wages and other items at the three shops, from which should come satisfactory wage adjustments.

There are many details which are still not completely acceptable to the workers, but it is too early to know the final outcome of all these negotiations or "evaluations." We should be able to report more extensively at a later writing. After what they believe was a good show of unity and singleness of purpose, the workers returned to work in full strength on Thursday, November 9. There are still small rumblings of dissatisfaction and it is hoped that the Department of Rehabilitation will listen more carefully.

Back to Contents

ARIZONA CONVENTION

by James R. Carlock

The 1967 A. F. B. convention was held October 28, 29, 1967 at Hiway House Motel in Phoenix, Arizona. The welcome address was given by Jarret Jarvis, Vice-Mayor of Phoenix.

Highlighting the panel discussions was the current problem of establishing an Arizona-based lending library for talking book users. Richard Blucker, Director of the Division of Rehabilitation of Visually Impaired and Marguerite Coolly, State Librarian, and State Senator Don Helacy were the persons on the panel.

Edward Anderson, Vocational Principal of the Arizona School for the Deaf and Blind talked of the recent program of pre-graduate counseling and on-the-job training at the school.

There were also presentations made from the local Social Security office on social security changes. Paul Ash, of the American Institute of Technology, gave a progress report on the job placement of blind computer programmers who have recently been trained at that school. In addition, there were discussions on problems confronting counselors in the area of job placement, the ever-increasing and up-grading of the vending stand programs; the work of the Governor's Study Committee to explore all rehabilitation necessities to achieve total rehabilitation facilities by 1975.

Resolutions were presented for increased aid to the blind; amendment to the Arizona voting law; legislative support of the DRVI budget request; establishment of an Arizona -based lending library for talking books; and, adoption of the model white cane law.

The outstanding volunteer service award was presented to George Kester. The Scholarship award recognized Rosemary Frick, an A. S. U. student; a fifty dollar donation was earmarked for the Hadley School for the Blind.

Election results are as follows:

President James R. Carlock, Phoenix
1st Vice-President Joseph Hurely, Prescott
2nd Vice-President Lee Roy Kerr, Phoenix
Secretary Catherine Thurley, Prescott
Treasurer Ray Miranda, Phoenix

The banquet grace was given by the Reverend Pierce who is a relative of K. F. B. President Bob Whitehead. The banquet speech was given by Frank Kells, Executive Director for the Phoenix Center for the Blind.

Back to Contents

WELFARE RESIDENCY RULE HIT AGAIN

WASHINGTON (UPI)--Nov. 9, 1967. A sharp and perhaps killing blow has been dealt the one year residency requirement used by many states to determine who gets welfare aid.

In a 2-1 ruling November 8, the highest panel of federal judges yet to consider the requirement held that it was unconstitutional as applied in the District of Columbia.

Because the panel included two members of the U.S. Court of Appeals and because the ruling struck down an act of Congress, legal experts here said its impact would likely be felt in many other jurisdictions.

"If it isn't appealed to the Supreme Court, it will mean the end of residency requirements for sure, " one said, "If it is appealed, this opinion has the best chance of any of being upheld."

What the court said, in effect is that a person's need for welfare help should be the measure of whether or not it is given--not whether an individual has lived in the district for a full year.

Chief Judge David L. Bazelon and Judge Charles Fahy said in their majority opinion:

"A bona fide resident of the District of Columbia for six months who is indigent and without a means by which to support herself and her children is no less in need of public assistance than an indigent who has been here for a full year."

They said that the basic purpose of welfare legislation was to offer help to those in need so they could achieve self-support. Basing a denial of such help on anything other than need frustrates the purpose of the law, they asserted.

"Indeed," the majority said, "the denial of assistance of an entire year to otherwise qualified recipients (of welfare payments) may only erode values which the statute tries to promote."

The majority decision, the third in this area recently, rested primarily on 14th Amendment demands for all citizens to receive equal treatment under any given law. The other rulings were in Connecticut and Delaware by panels of district court judges who reached similar conclusions.

Back to Contents

HARRELL et al v. TOBRINER
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT, DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA
November 8, 1967
OPINION OF THE COURT

Before BAZELON, Chief Circuit Judge, FAHY, Senior Circuit Judge, and HOLTZOFF, District Judge.

FAHY, Circuit Judge. Plaintiffs and intervenor, all now to be referred to as plaintiffs, in slightly differing factual situations applied for public assistance under the District of Columbia Public Assistance Act of 1962, Title 3, Chapter 2, D.C. Code (1967). Defendants, who have official responsibility in the matter, denied the applications. The sole ground of denial was that plaintiffs and the minor children on whose behalf they sought aid had not complied with the residence requirements of D. C. Code §3-203(a), (b) (1967). set forth in the margin insofar as pertinent to this case, and with the regulations promulgated pursuant to the statute. Plaintiffs seek relief by declatory judgments and injunctions against enforcement by defendants of such residence requirements. The complaints proceed on two theories, first, that Section 3-203 vests a discretion in the defendants to disregard the one-year residence requirements, and they have not exercised such discretion, and, second, that if there is no such discretion the one-year residence requirements of Section 3-203 are constitutionally invalid.

This three-judge District Court was convened pursuant to 18 U. S. C. § 2282 and was composed under the provisions of 18 U. S. C. § 2284.

On September 11, 1967, after argument, we granted the motion of plaintiffs for a preliminary injunction pendente lite or until the further order of the court. We accompanied our order with Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law, the findings setting forth in detail the factual situation of each plaintiff, which still prevails in essential respects. The matter is decided now on motions for summary judgment submitted by both plaintiffs and defendants, enabling us to decide the merits, there being no genuine issues of material fact requiring an evidentiary hearing.

We agree with defendants that Section 3-203 does not grant defendants a discretion to disregard the one-year residence requirements applicable to plaintiffs. This construction is supported not only by the language of the statute but also by its legislative history. The Senate District of Columbia Committee in its Report on the Act stated that one of the congressional purposes was to

(c) Make uniform in all categories a 1-year residence requirement for public assistance eligibility. (S. Rep. No. 844, 87th Cong., 1st Sess. (1961).)

The administrators of the program have consistently interpreted the statute as the legislative history thus indicates Congress intended, that is, that the language "public assistance shall be awarded" to those who meet the one-year conditions means that the assistance is not to be granted unless those conditions are met. This consistent and reasonable interpretation by those charged with the duty of administering the statute is entitled to great weight. Zemel v. Rusk 381 U.S. 1, 11; Udall v. Tallman, 380 U.S. 1, 16; United States v. American Trucking Association, 310 U.S. 534, 549. Moreover, we independently interpret the language used by Congress in like manner. It becomes out duty therefore to decide the validity of the challenged parts of the statute as so construed.

II

A court approaches its responsibility of passing upon the constitutional validity of an Act of Congress aware that Congress also interprets the Constitution. This is so even though Congress' judgment is manifested, as in the present case, merely by passage of the legislation rather than by explicit treatment of the constitutional question. Moreover, as Mr. Justice Goldberg stated for the Court in Kennedy v. Mendoza-Martinez, 372 U.S. 144, 159:

Since the validity of an Act of Congress is involved, we begin our analysis mindful that the function we are now discharging is "the gravest and most delicate duty that this Court is called upon to perform. "Blodgett v. Holden, 275 U. S. 142, 148 (separate opinion of Holmes, J.). This responsibility we here fulfill with all respect for the powers of Congress, but with recognition of the transcendent status of our Constitution.

In Trop v. Dulles, 356 U.S. 86, 103-04, Mr. Chief Justice Warren had stated the matter as it must be considered:

The provisions of the Constitution are not time-worn adages or hollow shibboleths. They are vital, living principles that authorize and limit governmental powers in our Nation. They are the rules of government. When the constitutionality of an Act of Congress is challenged in this Court, we must apply those rules. If we do not, the words of the Constitution become little more than good advice.

When it appears that an Act of Congress conflicts with one of these provisions, we have no choice but to enforce the paramount command of the Constitution. We are sworn to do no less. . .We do well to approach this task cautiously, as all our predecessors have counseled. But the ordeal of judgment cannot be shirked.

In line with the caution thus admonished, applicable to us certainly no less than to the Supreme Court, we should construe the challenged portions of Section 3-203 so as to avoid a serious constitutional question if reasonably able to do so. United States v. Rumely, 345 U.S. 41, 45. But it seems clear to us that Congress intended to impose one-year residence requirements as conditions, similar to conditions prevailing in numerous other jurisdictions. There is no evidence of a congressional intent to depart from a rather widespread legislative pattern in this area. This pattern lends support to defendants' interpretation of Section 3-203 as precluding a discretion on their part to disregard the requirements. Our agreement with defendants' interpretation requires us to reach the constitutional question.

Any weight the legislative pattern gives to defendants' constitutional position, however, as distinguished from their statutory interpretation, we think is overcome by considerations which stem primarily from the equal protection of the laws guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment and applicable to this jurisdiction by reason of the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment.

Notwithstanding the frequent use of such a residence condition, only recently has it come before federal courts for decision as to its validity. Nine federal judges, in three separate cases, with one judge dissenting, have recently considered the constitutional questions involved. Thompson V. Shapiro, 270 F. Supp. 331 (a three-judge District Court of the District of Connecticut); Green v. Department of Public Welfare, 270 F. Supp. 173 (a three-judge District Court of the District of Delaware); and Smith v. Reynolds , F. Supp (a three-judge District Court of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania). In Thompson and Green the residence requirements, respectively, of Connecticut and Delaware, were held unconstitutional. In Smith v. Reynolds a final decision has not been reached, but enforcement of such a requirement in Pennsylvania has been enjoined preliminarily on constitutional grounds.

In Thompson the court first concluded the provision constituted an arbitrary classification in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment's prohibition against state abridgment of the privilege and immunity of a citizen of the United States to enjoy the liberty to travel interstate. The court relied heavily upon Edwards v. California , 314 U.S. 160. The court also relied upon a more general liberty of the citizen to travel, upheld by the Supreme Court in the passport cases, including Kent v. Dulles, 357 U.S. 116, 126-127, and United States v. Guest , 383 U.S. 745, 759- The Thompson court said:

the right to travel exists and included within its dimensions is the right to establish residence in Connecticut. Denying to the plaintiff even a gratuitous benefit because of her exercise of her constitutional right effectively impedes the exercise of that right.

270 F. Supp. at 336.

Second, the court in Thompson decided that the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment was violated:

. . .the classifications of one year's residence or a job are not reasonable in light of the purpose of § 17-2d because again there is no showing that those applicants will be lesser burdens than applicants without jobs or one year's residence. Section 17-2d, in brief, violates the equal protection clause because even if its purpose were valid, [to protect the finances of the states] which it is clearly not, the classifications are unreasonable.

Id. at 338.

In Green the court, in holding invalid the Delaware one-year requirement for public assistance, said that the test under the Equal Protection Clause was whether the classification based on residence was reasonably related to the purpose of the statute, citing Morey v. Doud, 354 U. S. 457. The court then pointed out that the purpose of the public assistance program was "'to promote the welfare and happiness of all people of the State, by providing public assistance to all of its needy and distressed, that assistance shall be administered promptly and humanely with due regard for the preservation of family life. . . '" 270 F. Supp. at 177.

With these purposes in mind the court considered the reasonableness of the one-year residence provision in relation to those purposes, holding, It is evident to us that as to these families living in Delaware for less than one year the denial of public assistance fails to carry out the stated purposes for the Public Assistance Code. It in fact tends to frustrate them. The residency requirement prevents prompt assistance to some of the State's needy and distressed and to that extent is the antithesis of "humane." It also necessarily results in pressure on the solidarity of the family unit. Nor given these circumstances is it an acceptable answer to say that until they are here one year such persons are not a part of the state's needy and distressed. The discrimination based on length of residency thus finds no constitutional justification in the purpose declared in the statute itself.

We have given first consideration to the above three-judge District Court cases because they are recent decisions on precisely the same subject and are not decisions of more remote application. We must be certain, however, that they comport with principles established by the Supreme Court. Although the Court has not dealt with this particular situation its decisions in other areas reveal the applicable principles, and to them we now turn.

In McLaughlin v. Florida, 379 U.S. 184, 191, our task in interpreting the Equal Protection Clause is stated as follows:

The court must reach and determine the question whether the classifications drawn in a statute are reasonable in light of its purpose. . . .

Carrington v. Rash, 380 U.S. 89, 93, restated this test in exactly the same language.

In Bates v. Little Rock, 361 U.S. 516, 525, a case involving First Amendment rights of association, the Court declared that.

When it is shown that state action threatens significantly to impinge upon constitutionally protected freedom it becomes the duty of this Court to determine whether the action bears a reasonable relationship to the achievement of the governmental purpose asserted as its justification.

In Gulf, Colorado fc Santa Fe Ry. v. Ellis, 165 U.S. 150, 155 (1897), the power of classification was recognized as permitted by the Fourteenth Amendment, but the Court added that: "it is equally true that such classification cannot be made arbitrarily."

More specifically, in Truax v. Raich, 239 U.S. 33, 42 (1915), the Court stated that "reasonable classification implies action consistent with the legitimate interests of the State. ..."

A principal purpose of Section 3-203 obviously is to provide public assistance to the needy. Moreover, the immediately preceding section provides that the entire public assistance chapter shall be administered so as to provide the maximum cooperation with other agencies rendering services in order "to maintain and strengthen family life and to help applicants for public assistance and recipients to attain self-support or self-care." D.C. Code § 3-202(b){l) (1967). These purposes constitute the keystone of the legislation. A bona fide resident of the District of Columbia for six months who is indigent and without the means by which to support herself and her children is no less in need of public assistance than an indigent who has been here for a full year. The basic purposes of the legislation--public assistance to those in need, maintenance and strengthening of family life, achievement of self-support and self-care--are not more faithfully served by withholding aid until applicants have lived here for twelve months. Indeed, the denial of assistance for an entire year to otherwise qualified recipients may only erode values which the statute tries to promote. The spread over a year's time of the evils which public assistance seeks to combat may mean that aid, when it becomes available, will be too late: Too late to prevent the separation of a family into foster homes or Junior Villages; too late to heal sickness due to malnutrition or exposure; too late to help a boy from succumbing to crime.

Section 3-203 creates two classes of persons: those who have resided in the District of Columbia for one year or longer, and those who have resided here for less than one year. Although the Supreme Court has recognized that a "legislature is free to make classifications in the application of a statute which are relevant to the legislative purpose," it has emphasized that the "ultimate test of validity is not whether the classes differ but whether the differences between them are pertinent to the subject with respect to which the classification is made. " Asbury Hospital V. Cass County, 326, U.S. 207, 214. If a six-month resident is denied the assistance given to a one-year resident, in circumstances in which each is otherwise within the requirements of the statute, the former is denied the equal protection of the law, for the clearly different treatment has no reasonable relation to the basic legislative purposes. The disqualifying requirement applicable to plaintiffs thus engrafts upon the legislation an invalid provision. The same reasons which led the courts in the Thompson and Green cases, and pendente lite in the Smith case, to hold comparable provisions invalid as classifications without a reasonable relation to the purposes of the legislation apply to our cases.

III

We consider now arguments which have been urged in support of the residence requirement.

It is said that Congress in gratuitously providing for assistance may not be held to constitutional standards. The decisions are to the contrary. In Sherbert V. Verner , 374 U.S. 398, 404, the Supreme Court held that the fact that "unemployment compensation benefits are not appellant's 'right' but merely a 'privilege' " does not save a statute limiting such rights from "constitutional infirmity. " There is no indication in our cases that Congress desired unequal protection of the laws. Congress viewed the eligibility provision as justified. Our judicial problem is to determine the reasonableness of the difference in treatment which the challenged requirement imposes upon those in need of public assistance. There is no escape from the proposition that, in carrying forward a comprehensive program of this character, restrictions having no reasonable relationship to the basic purposes of the program are not immune from attack because the Congress was not under legal obligation to inaugurate the program. The Thompson, Green, and Smith cases, to which we have referred in other respects, support this position.

Defendants also contend that the restriction is reasonable because it is designed to protect this jurisdiction from an influx of persons seeking more generous public assistance than might be available elsewhere. Congress made no finding to that effect. As we have seen, the reason for the one-year residence requirement given in the Report of the Senate Committee was uniformity. Assuming, however, that Congress had in mind the protective purpose advanced by defendants, we are reminded that the historical origin of the localized character of public assistance was the Elizabethan Poor Laws. These laws enshrined the notion of "settlement," from which the concept of residence descended. Only those who were settled there were entitled to receive relief from a community. No doubt due in large part to the influence of these English laws-perhaps a subconscious influence--a number of our state legislatures adopted the idea of a minimum period of residence as a prerequisite to eligibility. But the Supreme Court pointed out more than twenty-five years ago that

the theory of the Elizabethan poor laws no longer fits the facts. Recent years, and particularly the past decade, have been marked by a growing recognition that in an industrial society the task of providing assistance to the needy has ceased to be local in character.

Edwards v. California, 314 U. S. 160, 174-75

Another difficulty in accepting the protective assumption as giving constitutional support to the challenged provision, is the speculative character of the assumption from a factual standpoint. In 1956, the Deputy Commissioner of Social Welfare of the State of New York, which has not had a minimum period of residence for nearly a century, stated that in the preceding year only two per cent of all public assistance recipients had lived in New York for less than one year. In 1963, the Moreland Commission on Public Welfare in New York, after a lengthy study of the entire fabric of public assistance, stated that it was opposed to residence requirements on the ground that "the present laws [designed to prevent abuse] are sufficient to protect the taxpayer without penalizing the unfortunate." "To assume that people are influenced to move or not to move according to the availability of help on a relief basis is to misunderstand the dynamics of human behavior." This is especially true in the United States. A committee of Congress has stated that "[g]eo-graphical mobility has always been a habit of the American people."

Even if some citizens do enter a state in order to obtain greater welfare aid, the possibility of this effect, alone, is not in the circumstances sufficient to require the court to sustain the residence condition. As against a similar contention in the Green case, the court interposed the decision of the Supreme Court in Edwards v. California, supra, saying that such a ground was "a constitutionally impermissible basis for separate state treatment." The court continued:

The protection of the public purse, no matter how worthy in the abstract, is not a permissible basis for differentiating between persons who otherwise possess the same status in their relationship to the State of Delaware.

Assuming that a provision to prevent abuse of the public assistance program would be valid--a case of abuse is not before us--the challenged provision sweeps before it all who have less than the required residence, including bona fide residents who had come to this jurisdiction for reasons disassociated entirely from a desire to obtain relief. This is too broad to be sustained in light of the resulting inequality of treatment:

[Assuming, for the purpose of argument only, that the basic prohibition is constitutional, it does not follow that there is no constitutional limit to the means which may be used to enforce it.

Oyama v. California, 332 U.S. 633, 646-47; and see concurring opinion of Mr. Justice Brennan in Trop v. Dulles, 356 U.S. at 114, where he discussed the need of legislation to achieve desired ends by alternative methods open to less objection.

In Thompson , in language particularly applicable to our case, it is said:

[I]f there were here a time limit applied equally to all, for the purpose of prevention of fraud, investigation of indigency or other reasonable administrative need, it would undoubtedly be valid. Connecticut's Commission of Welfare franklytestified that no residence requirement is needed for any of these purposes.

270 F. Supp. at 33. And see Green, where the desire to avoid payments tainted with fraud or based on insufficient information, which the court said were of course legitimate ends, did not justify the one-year residence requirement, "particularly in view of the consequences to persons in need. ..." 270 F. Supp. at 177. Whether or not a narrower provision designed to prevent abuse would be valid would of course depend upon its terms.

The choice of twelve months denies plaintiffs the equal protection of the laws because, in a manner inconsistent with the basic purpose of the legislation, it bars them from assistance granted to others. That basic purpose, simply stated, is to aid members of the community who are in need. That the residence requirement serves other purposes--ease of administration, or discouragement of movement to the jurisdiction--does not help defendants when the consequence is to defeat the primary purpose of the legislation. Other means to accomplish secondary purposes must be sought. This is especially true when the discrimination perpetuates the conditions the legislation is designed to cure.

It is also said by defendants that Congress in 42 U.S.C. § 602(b), where the basis for the federal contribution to state public assistance programs is set forth, has approved the one-year residence requirements of states. The fact is that Section 602(b) merely provides, in this connection, that the Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare shall not approve any plan which denies aid on the basis of an eligibility requirement of more than a year.

As to the possibility that the legislature intended to confine assistance to domiciliaries of the jurisdiction and that the one-year residence provides an objective legislative test of such status, the Green court held:

the one year residency requirement prevents many applicants from obtaining assistance even though they are clearly living in Delaware with an intention to remain indefinitely. . . .

The court left open the question "whether a state could constitutionally confine the benefits of its public assistance programs to its own domiciliaries. " We also are not called upon to decide this question, for it is not disputed that the plaintiffs are bona fide domiciliaries of the District who came for reasons disassociated from the desire to obtain relief not elsewhere available.

Finally, it is suggested that if the one-year residence provision in invalidated the whole program falls with it. We hold otherwise. No such result was held to follow in the Thompson , Green and Smith cases. It would not be reasonable to impute such an intention to Congress. Moreover, Section 203 is part of Chapter 2 of Title 3 of the Code, and Section 223 of the chapter conclusively demonstrates Congress entertained no such intention. Section 223 is explicit:

If any provision of this chapter or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the chapter and the application of such provision to other persons or circumstances shall not be affected thereby.

Views which support the validity of the one-year condition are well advanced by our dissenting brother, and by Judge Clarie, dissenting in Thompson. We readily acknowledge there is no absolute certainty about the reach of the Equal Protection Clause in this area of the law. "But the ordeal of judgment cannot be shirked." Trop v. Dulles, supra at 104. We are encouraged to make the judgment we do not only by the decisions in Thompson, Green and Smith, but by the over-all salutary action of Congress in entering into the welfare programs of which Section 3-203 is a part. This national movement toward assistance where assistance is needed, and the human terms of the problem, permit the court somewhat greater latitude in deciding that this difference in the treatment of those in our midst who are in need amounts to unequal protection of the laws than if the treatment were with respect to some matter less critical to their living conditions.

An appropriate judgment will be entered based on our ruling that the one-year residence requirements of Section 3-203(a) (b) of our Code are invalid in application to plaintiffs and those in like circumstances. Counsel for the parties are requested to seek agreement on the form of judgment, taking into consideration any changes in the parties who are defendants due to reorganization of the Government of the District of Columbia.

David L. Bazelon Chief Circuit Judge

Dated: November 2, 1967

Charles Fahy Senior Circuit Judge

BAZELON, Chief Judge, concurring: I concur in Judge Fahy's opinion and would only emphasize that equal protection requires a statutory classification to be reasonably related to a "proper governmental objective," Boiling v. Sharpe, 347 U. S. 497 (1954), and that to deter indigents from settling in the District of Columbia is not such an objective, Edwards v. California, 314 U.S. 160 (1941).

Back to Contents

GUIDE DOG HELD FOR RANSOM

(Reprinted from the Oakland Tribune, Nov. 10, 1967)

BERKELEY--Ibsen, the "kidnaped" guide dog, is alive and well in his master's apartment.

The 1-1/2-year-old German shepherd returned home to his blind owner, Larry Lazzarini, 30, almost a full day after his mysterious disappearance.

"I don't know whether they (the kidnappers) let him go, or whether he broke loose and found his way home on his own, " Lazzarini said. "At any rate, I'm happy he's back."

Lazzarini, a University of California graduate student, said he was "just sitting in my apartment" when Ibsen re-appeared almost as suddenly as he had disappeared.

"I heard this jingling noise," the elated Lazzarini reported. "He has a little bell on his collar, you know.

"But I'd been hearing jingles ever since he vanished and I thought this one was wishful thinking just like the others. I went outside anyway and heard something on the stairs. Before I knew it, Ibsen was all over.

Ibsen was reported stolen from in front of the apartment of Lazzarini's girl friend, Tula Jaffe, 28.

After Lazzarini and Miss Jaffe, a school teacher, had intensively searched the neighborhood for Ibsen, they received a telephone call from an anonymous man who demanded a "reward" or the dog would not be returned.

Lazzarini explained that he could not afford to pay a reward from his $180 a month state subsistence allowance, but managed to obtain the man's address for further negotiations. He and Miss Jaffe then drove out to the East Oakland location given by the caller, only to find out two hours later that it was a fictitious address.

Ibsen still was wearing his tag, which contains Lazzarini's and Miss Jaffe's telephone numbers, upon his return and appeared unharmed. He dozed through the rest of the afternoon, however, and usually sleeps only at night, Lazzarini related.

Back to Contents

GUARANTEED INCOME TO BE TESTED

(Reprinted from The New York Times, Nov. 2, 1967)

WASHINGTON, Nov. 1 (UPI)--One thousand New Jersey families will be picked next year to test a controversial approach to fighting poverty--a guaranteed income--it was announced Nov. 1.

The families will be selected in Newark, Jersey City, Elizabeth, Trenton and Camden.

The three -year program is being financed by the Office of Economic Opportunity and run by a private research firm in Princeton, Mathematica, Inc.

An average of $80 to $120 a month in the form of a "negative income tax" will be given to the families, who will report their regular income and receive payments based on income and family size. The payments will begin in early spring.

The chief feature of the experiment is to test whether the payments could be used as an incentive to work and, in some cases, as an alternative to welfare.

A growing number of educators and professionals in the social welfare field contend that a guaranteed national income would be more efficient and less expensive than current welfare aid.

New Jersey was chosen because it offered a "typical urban" poor population, and its welfare laws do not pose conflicts with the project, officials said.

Back to Contents

MEXICO HOLIDAY - 1968

by Kenneth Jernigan

Arrangements for the Mexico City holiday are now complete! The prices are good and the itinerary is fabulous. The 1967 trip to Hawaii was a whopping success, but the 1968 Mexico City holiday will be even better. We have profited by our experience, trying to improve on all the good things and working to iron out any wrinkles which showed up on the Hawaii safari. Read and be convinced, and get those reservations in as soon as possible

The Des Moines Convention will end at 5 o'clock Friday afternoon, July 5, 1968. The next day, Saturday, July 6, we will leave Des Moines by jet airliner. We will go to Dallas and then on to Mexico City. This will be a memorable flight. Immediately upon clearing customs in Mexico City we will be taken to the Del Prado Hotel, one of Mexico City's finest. We have absolute assurance that all of us will definitely be in the same hotel.

After arriving at the hotel we are invited to attend a special cocktail party given in our honor. We are on our own for dinner and the remainder of the evening.

Sunday, July 7, is a full day, one that we will never forget. In the morning we will be taken to the Palace of Fine Arts, where we have special reservations to witness the world famous Ballet Folklorico. As the unique Tiffany glass curtain rises, we will be greeted by all the sound, music, and pageantry of Old Mexico.

When we leave the Ballet we will be taken to Xochimilco, where we will join in the festive mood of the Sunday picnickers as we embark in a flower bedecked boat for a ride through the "floating gardens." Serenading Mariachis and smiling vendors add to the holiday atmosphere. Luncheon will be provided at one of Mexico City's finest restaurants.

As the afternoon progresses, we will be taken by special guide to the arena Plaza De Toros where seats on the shady side will be reserved for us to enjoy the excitement of the spectacular drama of the battle between the matador and El Toro, the bull.

Monday, July 8, another day to remember. An interesting phase of Mexico reveals itself as we visit the shrine of Guadalupe where we see devout pilgrims gathered to pay homage to the patron saint of the Americas. There are many things to touch as well as to see. After visiting the Basilica and the Chapel of the Well, we continue on to the archeological zone of Teotihuacan. Here we see the pyramids of the sun and moon, formerly the sacrificial altars of the Toltec and Mixtec civilizations -- the temple of Quelzalcoatl, mightiest of the Indian gods --and a regional museum containing relics of these early civilizations. After visiting the pyramids, we will be taken to the delightful restaurant "El Lago" for a relaxing luncheon. After lunch we return to our hotel for independent activities.

Tuesday, July 9, a day of leisure. This day is left free for visiting the many interesting shops, buying souvenirs, taking any one of the optional tours which are available, or simply exploring. The tour guide will be happy to assist in arranging optional tours to any who wish them on Tuesday.

Wednesday, July 10, departure day. "We go to the airport and say goodbye to Mexico City. The plane flies to Dallas, where transfers are then made to Des Moines or other points.

The total price for this fun-filled package is only $296, plus $3.34 tax. This includes round trip airfare from Des Moines to Mexico City, transportation between airport and hotel in Mexico City and transportation to all the activities listed on the agenda. It includes hotel costs, provided you are willing to share a twin-bedded room with another person. The person to share your room will be selected by the tour officials unless you specify a given individual as a roommate. If you wish a single room, it may be possible to make arrangements (provided there are not too many such requests) but the price will be proportionately higher.

The price covers all costs (including food and drink when specified) in connection with the activities listed. Side trips and other meals will be paid for by the individual.

One item requires special emphasis. It will be necessary for each individual going on the trip to secure a Mexican government tourist card. To secure such a card an individual needs a copy of his birth certificate, a passport (regardless of how old or to where), or a voter registration card. It is not necessary to have all of these three items. Any one of them will do. To avoid bother, you may wish the tour conductor to secure the Mexican tourist card for you. If so, bring one of the three documents mentioned to Des Moines and have it ready to submit to the tour conductor not later than Thursday, July 4.

Some of those going on the tour may not wish to come back to Des Moines but may wish to return directly to their home from Dallas. These arrangements can be made by the tour company and any savings in airfare will be passed on to the individual. In fact it may be (if the individual is from some other part of the country and does not plan to return to Des Moines) that a round trip combination ticket can be purchased from his home to Des Moines to attend the convention, and then to Mexico City. This might result in considerable savings. In a few instances it might even be possible for an individual to join the tour in Dallas without coming to Des Moines at all. However, it cannot be too strongly emphasized that if any of these special arrangements are to be made, they must be requested and made through the tour group and not by the individual dealing on his own with the airlines.

On our 1967 Hawaii tour we had 149 participants. We hope that the 1968 Mexico trip will be even larger. However, we've been conservative.

We have made firm reservations and plans for 150. We will sell tickets to the first 150 people who submit their names and $50. 00 deposit. A mine will not be entered on the list until the deposit has actually been received. If there are more than 150 wishing to go (and we believe there will be) we will make every effort to fill requests as long as we can. However, we emphasize that at this time we have only 150 firm spaces, and we urge that you make your reservations as soon as possible.

Please do not send reservation requests to me or to Dr. tenBroek. This will simply mean a delay and will move you farther down the list. Send all correspondence to: Mrs. Peggy J, Davis, Kim Tours and Travel, Tishman Building, 615 South Flower Street, Los Angeles, California 90017. Deposit checks should be made payable to "Kim Tours and Travel."

As indicated, your deposit should be sent immediately. You will be asked to pay the remainder of the money before June 1. The tour will be closed as of June 1 and no deposits or requests for reservations will be taken after that date. A special trust fund will be created for our account and in case of verifiable emergency cancellations, a refund will be made. This promises to be the greatest vacation ever. See you in Mexico City.

Back to Contents

OHIO CONVENTION

by Clyde Ross

The 1967 OCB convention was held in Columbus, Ohio, Oct. 13th through the 15th, with the Board meeting on the 12th. The OCB is now of age, since this was our 21st annual convention. In 1947, our original Constitution was adopted. In 1957, we rewrote our Constitution, with the approval of the convention. In 1967, the Constitution Committee, headed by Elizabeth Haag and John Knall, submitted an up-to-date Constitution, which brought praise and approval from the Board and the convention.

The Public Relations Committee was not entirely happy with its report, but we were able to show some progress. The residential requirement was reduced to the last twelve consecutive months, a distinct improvement over three out of the last nine years. Again we had to compromise, but we did get an increase in the burial fee for indigent blind. The principal item to which we can point with some pride was the defeat of a bill that would have allowed the City of Columbus to route an express way through the grounds of the Ohio State School for the Blind and the Ohio State School for the Deaf. Six times in nine years such a bill has been presented to the Legislature. This time, it got through the Senate, but we managed to kill it in Committee in the House. While the OCB put forth much effort into blocking this bill, we must offer due credit to other groups and individuals who threw their weight on our side. Indirectly, we can take credit for an assist in securing legislation and a budget increase to provide for hiring more home teachers, more rehab counselors, an additional consultant nurse, an additional counselor in the Children's Services, and the continuance of the Home Industries program. In this picture include the upgrading of qualified staff.

Our keynote speaker was a retired principal and instructor of the OSSB, Raymond Niday, (blind) who set the stage for a thoughtful convention, whose theme was "Taking Our Place in the Community." The Convention Committee was successful in getting the retired Superintendent of the OSSB as Master of Ceremonies at our banquet and the Lieutenant Governor of Ohio for the banquet speaker. Both were in rare form.

I believe that Ohio can claim the distinction of being the first NFB affiliate to elect a Negro President. It is time that we recognize ability and dedication to cause, without respect to color, Al Smith has proven his capacity for work; he has a level head; he has an eternal desire to help his fellowmen. In addition to all this, his wife Amanda and three daughters are 100% back of him. Al lives at 2020 Jacobs Rd., Youngstown, Ohio 44505.

First Vice President - Carl Eiche
Second Vice President - Charles Novinger
Secretary - John Knall
Treasurer - Ivan Garwood

Our President, in this case Al Smith, is automatically Chairman of the Ohio delegation at the NFB convention. From the floor, we elected Carl Eiche as second delegate, Clyde Ross as first alternate and Pete Waback as second alternate.

Back to Contents

NEW LANGUAGE OF THE HANDS

(Reprinted from Science News, October 21, 1967)

A Michigan biophysicist thinks it would be possible to develop a hand language as far advanced over speech as speech is over grunts.

Research money would be well spent on developing new methods of personal communication, considering the misunderstandings that arise through language. Dr. John R. Piatt of the University of Michigan told urban specialists who met in Washington for a seminar on "The Next Fifty Years."

There are 19 bones in each hand. A skilled violinist can manipulate them all and, with practice, said Dr. Piatt, other people could probably learn.

That means 19 simultaneous channels of communication, once a vocabulary is established for the bone movements. The actual communication, however, would be electric.

A rubber glove with several electric contacts would pick up pulses from muscles that control the bones and transmit via a citizen's band radio to a second rubber glove-radio apparatus. The listener would receive the signals as prickles from 19 small electrodes on the back of the hand.

Back to Contents

HOUSE HEARINGS ON NATIONAL EYE INSTITUTE

by John Nagle

On October 31-November 1, the Public Health Subcommittee of the Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce, House of Representatives, conducted public hearings on a considerable number of identical bills to authorize the establishment of a National Eye Institute in the National Institutes of Health system.

Dr. William H. Stewart, Surgeon General of Public Health Service, and Dr. Richard L. Maasland, Director of the National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Blindness, opposed the independent Eye Institute legislation, contending that proliferation of the Health Institutes was unwise, that a separate agency to conduct research into the causes of vision impairing diseases would be more costly than the existing similarly-purposed Neurological Diseases and Blindness Institute, which has a division devoted to such research.

The Eye Institute opponents also contended it would be very difficult, if not impossible, to staff an expanded federal blindness institute with qualified personnel, since the salary scale for positions would be so far below earnings in private practice. They also argued the independent eye research agency would be $800,000 more costly to administer than the present eye research division.

Supporting the National Eye Institute proposal was a brilliant gathering of internationally famed medical men in the ophthalmology specialty.

They were: Dr. Ralph W. Ryan, Morgantown, West Virginia, practicing ophthalmologist, and former acting head of the Blindness Division, National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Blindness; Dr. A. Edward Maumenee, Johns Hopkins Hospital and the Wilmer Eye Clinic, Baltimore, Maryland; Dr. Thomas B. Duane, Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Dr. Michael J. Hogan, University of California Medical School, San Francisco; Dr. Frank Newell, University of Chicago Medical School; Dr. Herbert E. Kaufman, University of Florida College of Medicine; Dr. David Cogan, Harvard Medical School; Dr. Bradley R. Straatsma, University of California at Los Angeles Medical Center; and. Dr. Jules Stein, Board of Trustees Chairman, Research to Prevent Blindness, Inc.

Doctor after doctor spoke eloquently for the establishment of an independent and ophthalmology-oriented and directed federal agency to conduct and finance research into the causes of blindness. Each, in turn, rebutted the contentions of Surgeon General Steward and Director Maasland. They acknowledged that the present Blindness Division of the Institute of Neurological Diseases and Blindness has done some fine work, but they all agreed that it has done far too little.

They argued that a separate Eye Institute would focus attention and efforts in the blindness research field, rather than continue its secondary significance in the existing federal institute structure, and that, by being an independent and self-contained agency, such an institute would attract able and qualified men who would join its staff even though they might have to sacrifice personal income to do so.

The National Eye Institute bills also had the active and staunch support of the National Federation of the Blind, represented in the House hearings by its Washington office chief, John Nagle. He gave statistical evidence of the prevalence of sight-impairments in the United States, and described the dollars and cents cost of special services provided to blind people --conservatively estimated at over a billion dollars annually. Nagle declared that although blindness can be only a nuisance and an inconvenience in a person's life, too often it is a disaster because of inadequate help or no help at all in coping with the problems of functioning, sightless, in a sight-oriented world. "But," asserted Nagle, "whether blindness is a nuisance or a disaster, it should not be needlessly perpetuated in our society."

Back to Contents

NEW HAWAII AFFILIATE FOR NFB

The Hawaii Federation of the Blind became the newest state affiliate of the NFB following a summer petition by the island group and favorable action by the NFB Executive Committee at its September meeting.

Headed by independent businessman Warren Toyama, as president, the Hawaii Federation has the following officers: Roger Dinwiddle, vice-president; Valerie Lloyd, recording secretary; Julia Shimabukuro, corresponding secretary, and Edith Miyahara, treasurer.

The recently formed state organization is the successor of the old Hawaii Adult Association of the Blind, which last year voted to disband after 40 years of service to Hawaii's blind population. The present officers of the new Federation were elected at an organizational meeting earlier this year, and were immediately authorized to draw up a constitution and to investigate possible affiliation with the NFB.

Toyama, a graduate of the state school for the blind and of the University of Hawaii, attended the NFB convention in Los Angeles last summer and reported back affirmatively on the desirability of membership in the National Federation. A constitution closely reflecting NFB philosophy and model provisions was adopted by the Hawaii Federation on August 25.

The youthful, college -educated leadership of the Pacific affiliate reflects a spirit of vitality and intelligence which, along with the famed "Aloha spirit, " gives promise of constructive contributions to the organized blind movement. The Misses Shimabukuro and Miyahara are teachers in the Honolulu public schools; Miss Lloyd is a social worker, and Dinwiddle is employed as a piano tuner.

While the organization base of the Hawaii Federation, like the bulk of the state's population, is on the central island of Oahu, efforts are underway to develop chapters on the other major islands of the Hawaiian chain --Kauai, Maui, Hawaii and Molokai.

Back to Contents

BLIND MAN ADMITS HE HARBORED DRAFT EVADERS

(Reprinted from The New York Times, Sept. 2, 1967)

A 38-year-old blind man on trial in Criminal Court said that he had been harboring draft evaders and runaway soldiers in his mid-town apartment.

The defendant, Albert Peroni of 2 08 East 54th Street, was a part time lecturer on Soviet affairs at Brooklyn College last year, and has been working on his doctorate in that field.

He told the three-judge court: "I helped A. W. O. L. soldiers to get up to Canada or to set themselves up in apartments and get jobs here."

Peroni was on trial accused of trying to prevent an officer from entering his apartment at 4 A.M. last June 7 to make a lawful arrest of one of the runaway soldiers.

The court found him guilty. Then Chief Judge Thomas E, Rohan freed him on $100 bail on condition that he refrain from aiding A. W. O. L. soldiers and draft evaders in the six weeks until sentencing on Dec. 13.

Peroni, who was wearing long hair, a tight blue sweater and slacks, answered: "I'll abide by that condition during the six weeks."

Outside the courtroom he said he had helped 2 3 soldiers and draft evaders in a year, and that many friends in the East Village were doing so, too.

"Some of us have been caught. Some of us have gone up on marijuana charges," he said.

Peroni was graduated as a physics major from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, studying by the Braille method, according to a friend. Ho has been studying for his doctor's degree in political theory and Soviet affairs at Columbia University. He told the court, however, that he was now unemployed and on welfare. He was represented by a Legal Aid Society attorney.

Back to Contents

A STATEMENT OF MISSION AND GAOLS

Recently the Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation, with the assistance of the National Rehabilitation Association, published a sixteen (16) page pamphlet entitled "The State-Federal Vocational Rehabilitation Program Looks to the Future--A Statement of Mission and Goals." Its language is reasonable, professional, calm--and deceptive. That it states a mission is unquestioned. That it proposes a goal for vocational rehabilitation agencies is unquestioned. However, to many of us who have heard these agencies before and have been "serviced" by these agencies, it sounds as if the agency goal is but a stronger "gaol" for the handicapped.

The pamphlet states that it "has been prepared to clarify the mission of the vocational rehabilitation agencies" in the now-existing structure of services to people since the "proliferation of programs designed to meet the needs of disadvantaged people" during the current decade. It begins with the "public policy concepts upon which federal and state support of vocational rehabilitation programs is based. "Five concepts are listed:

"1. Work is one of the basic ingredients of American culture. Everyone has the right and need to work. . . .

"2. America needs the productive effort of all its citizens. . . .

"3. Disability results in costly dependence, and rehabilitation reduces dependency. . . .

"4. Conning through, although not so clearly until recent years, is the concept that rehabilitation is important because it results in making disabled people more effective and efficient consumers. . . .

"5. Specialized agencies and specialized programs are required to prevent disabled people from being neglected in programs designed to serve all of the people. . . . Many such programs now exist, and Congress continues to create new ones and to strengthen old ones. The necessity for the specialized program, apparently, is keenly felt now as never before. . . .

"The establishment of the vocational rehabilitation program in 1920, as already indicated, was the first step of the federal government in committing the resources of the nation to the support of a nationwide program for the welfare of handicapped people who had no 'claim' on the government. ..."

All this could mean that out of the maze of so many programs now established to "service" the disabled, one is going to rise to ascendency over the others. The rehabilitation professionals can gain total ascendency--if they push the right propaganda line of creating independence, and if they freeze all others from the field by specializing enough.

The Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation next discuss the history of vocational rehabilitation in the United States. To reinforce vocational rehabilitation's claim to ascendency in the current melee of domestic programs, the Council notes:

"The history of the state-federal program of vocational rehabilitation in the United States has been characterized more by the expansion of the classes of individuals to be served and the range of services to be provided than by a change in its basic concept. The primary purpose of vocational rehabilitation services remains "to render employable disabled persons who are handicapped in securing and holding employment." The justification for the program has changed very little although the rapid growth of social security and welfare programs for the disadvantaged, including the disabled, and their great cost have resulted in greater awareness of and emphasis upon the economic benefits of rehabilitation; and the growing concern for the general health and education of individuals has resulted in a greater awareness of the extent of disability in the population and the contribution that vocational rehabilitation can make to improve the health and upgrade the educational level of the handicapped population."

This, in fact, means that vocational rehabilitation has the philosophy, the message for our time. Social security and welfare help society--but help mainly to show how important rehabilitation is. Health and education programs also help society--but help mainly to point out that they are mere parts of the total rehabilitation "discipline."

If this is not sufficient to carry the day for rehabilitation, the Council argues, then look further at the history: "The concept of work has been expanded beyond work in competitive employment to include work at home and work in sheltered employment. "Could it be that work no longer means accomplishment in exactly the old-fashioned sense? Exactly Could it be that rehabilitation is trying to work a word trick? Could it be that "the concept of work has been expanded beyond work"? Could it be that this new public concept of work is to be yet another cornerstone of the temple of rehabilitation?

Still some disbelievers? You fear rehabilitation would not reach enough of our impoverished population. You have but to read next chapter, next verse.

"Important changes in the federal law came in 1943, 1954, and 1965. Vocational rehabilitation, which began as a vocational training program for physically handicapped individuals, has become a program to serve physically and mentally handicapped people, including individuals with behavioral disorders characterized by deviant social behavior or impaired ability to carry out normal relationships with family and community, and whose disabilities may result from vocational, educational, cultural, environmental, or other factors. The new definition increases the potential clientele of the state federal vocational rehabilitation program very substantially."

No understatement here--just apocalyptic truth.'

The Council lists fourteen (14) current responsibilities of rehabilitation. One (the first) is "the heart of responsibility." It is "the administration and support of a program of vocational rehabilitation service directly to the nation's physically and mentally handicapped youth and adults as defined in the preceding paragraphs."

Let us look at the other thirteen. One is the vending stand program of the Randolph -Sheppard Act, and one is planning. Two involve research, and two are in public relations. Three involve working with other agencies. Rehabilitation is to work [again, choose which meaning of work if you can] "with other public agencies with related responsibilities to assure that handicapped people for whom the various agencies share responsibility coordinate their efforts to achieve a continuum of services directed toward meeting the total needs of handicapped people. The rehabilitation agencies should initiate such cooperative programs and, where appropriate, accept responsibility for coordinating the services of the agencies involved. ..."

This could mean that the rehabilitation agencies initiate the runaround, coordinate the continuum, "and, where appropriate, accept responsibility for coordinating the services of the agencies" which "share responsibility" for the handicapped person. And if it were to mean this, what of the continuum?

The continuum may often be the workshop--the final four areas of responsibility listed by the Council. The professionals in rehabilitation might maintain that this division should be called "workshops and facilities. Or you might even find some sophisticated professionals saying facilities when they mean workshops. No matter, for those workshops just might be the goals of rehabilitation but the gaols for thousands of handicapped workers who--with imaginative training and opportunity--ought to be out of their gaols and into what is still called competitive employment by the uninformed public.

But no hope. Rehabilitation is now supreme, and it independently determines its own activity, the bulk of which is the control of agencies serving handicapped people or of the workshops. One thirteenth of its responsibility is to administer a program of services directly.

After reinforcing the notion that "the vocational rehabilitation agencies will retain responsibility for seeing that all needed services are made available to its clients , the Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation lists the mission necessary to achieve its goal, to meet its "obligations to handicapped people," Six pincer movements are in the attack. Four deal with getting money; to expand the program of direct services; to continue planning; to develop enough rehabilitation experts to make effective the aspired leadership role; and to develop effective public relations programs. One designs an even larger network of workshops (facilities). The sixth states that "the status of the state vocational rehabilitation agency in state government must be enhanced." There are those who just might say that this mission is, to a degree at least, self-serving.

The disabled do not desire simply to attack by verbal gymnastics the programs, goals, or missions of rehabilitation agencies. In fact, we agree with many of these goals and desire to see rehabilitation gain such ascendency in the current complex of domestic government programs as is needed for them to get their proper job done. The disabled support those agencies set up to give training and job placement.

But the blind have learned to their cost that it is easier to talk in jargon about professionalism, facilities and workshops, than to beat the bushes and produce proper training programs and jobs. The blind are concerned about "a network of vocationally oriented rehabilitation facilities and workshops," about more gaols instead of goals. We will, however, support those agencies that have goals of performance rather than self-aggrandizement. If rehabilitation can reach toward meaningful training and placement in productive jobs, then the blind will aid it in its attempt to rise.

Again, the blind ask for rehabilitation to discard the long-heard mission of what is good for the agency and to accept its proper mission of what is good for the client. The blind will walk hand in hand with those agencies. We have proved that. We ask simply that rehabilitation become our goal--not our gaoler.

Back to Contents

CALIFORNIA CONVENTION

by Michael Yale

The 1967 Fall Convention of the California Council of the Blind was held at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, October 13, 14 and 15. It began with a report Friday evening on fund raising, dealing particularly with the candy sale and the expanding variety show program.

Saturday morning's activities began with the report of the Credentials Committee. The Council now has 48 chapters with over two thousand members. Three new chapters have been added: The Associated Blind Students of Southern Alameda County, the Shasta-Tehama-Trinity Chapter, and the Melvin Jones Memorial Council of the Blind, a group for parents with blind children.

The first of many panel discussions dealt with employment of the handicapped. The speakers were Jack Rugh, of the Mayor's Committee on Employment of the Handicapped, Los Angeles, and Gilbert Gonzales of the Federal Civil Service Examiners. More than 17,000 handicapped were employed in 1966 in Federal agencies and the Post Office department.

The Orientation Center Alumni Association had a lively and interesting luncheon meeting, at which the group voted to establish three regional groups in order to improve communications and to explain Council policy to new graduates.

The Alumni Association of California School for the Blind had its regular meeting at an early morning breakfast. But despite the ghastly hour, the meeting was well attended. Russell Kletzing reported on his world tour and Beverly Gladden reported on her findings at the California School for the Blind. Mrs. Gladden found conditions that were displeasing to hear and will be further investigated by a committee which was appointed by the President, Mrs. Socorro Queen.

The teachers panel discussed the still existing problems in the employment of blind teachers. Bob Acosta is the first blind teacher to be employed in the Los Angeles School District.

Later in the afternoon. Dr. Wayne Mclntyre, of the Department of Education at San Fernando State College discussed a new program in training leaders in the deaf community.

At the banquet, Saturday evening, James Shumway, Administrative Assistant to Spencer Williams, told about the "fine" job being done for the blind by the Administration, and Mr. Shumway intimated that this was the best of all possible worlds.

Also on Saturday, the Southern California Students Division met. They elected Bob Acosta as their chairman, and agreed to meet every two months in the future to discuss their common problems as students. A Constitution was adopted, modelled after that of the NFB Student Division.

On Sunday, the delegates heard a legislative report by Perry Sundquist, explaining the various NFB bills which will again be submitted to the 90th Congress.

A panel discussion on CIB was held, in which it appeared there were still many serious problems, especially in the Berkeley and Los Angeles shops. Sid Urena gave an inspired speech in which he said that the workers were getting very little return for the "toil and sweat" they gave in the shops.

Beverly Gladden and "Muzzy" Marcelino also gave accounts of the recent setbacks the Council has received partly at the hands of the Governor's veto. James Riley, a Rehabilitation Counselor from the Bay Area, spoke about the Department of Rehabilitation amid many expressions of dissatisfaction by Council members. Discussions about the deplorable situation at the Orientation Center further showed the need for a Commission for the Blind.

The delegates also heard of the progress of the International Federation of the Blind which now consists of 16 member nations. Russell Kletzing talked about the new organization and its hopes for the future. A visitor from Pakistan, Miss Farkhunda Wahid, then told of her activities, including the observation of the resource program at Berkeley High School.

Among the resolutions passed by the delegates were: a reaffirmation of the Commission bill; a new white cane bill, patterned after the one introduced last year; a resolution calling for more home -counselor- teachers and better service by them, especially in areas where such services are almost completely lacking; a resolution aimed at helping the workers at the Lighthouse for the Blind in San Francisco to organize, and also to give them needed Council support; a resolution to revitalize the Orientation Center; a resolution to urge school districts to stop discriminating against blind teachers and obey the state law; and a resolution to establish a scholarship fund in the name of Dr. Jacobus tenBroek.

Other discussions were held concerning braille transcribers, their function and services available throughout the nation and on the growing and prospering Council Credit Union.

Richard Santos, chairman of the President's Luncheon, reiterated the theme of the Convention Sunday afternoon, stressing the need for working together as a Council of the Blind in order to achieve the goals of the blind of California.

Back to Contents

BLIND 'SEE' SCIENCE MUSEUM

(Reprinted from the Chicago Daily News, Oct. 20, 1967)

A new Braille service will help the blind to "see" and understand the 14 acres of exhibits at Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry.

Information on practically all of the museum's major collections will be provided in a series of volumes that can be studied in advance.

Included in the collection are a visitor's guide and a number of special booklets.

These are used to help student groups concentrate on areas of special interest.

The Johanna Bureau for the Blind and Visually Handicapped, 410 S. Michigan, prepared the Braille material.

Mrs. Maurice Lowenthal, volunteer director of the group's Braille division, said 14 volunteers did the job over a six-month period.

They first had to transcribe the museuin's regular books into Braille. These transcriptions were proofread by Mrs. Mary Hunt, a blind proof-reader.

At a later date, said Mrs. Lowenthal, the Johanna Bureau will make Braille interpretations of selected textbooks for the museum.

Information books in large type also will be printed for the partially blind.

The Johanna Bureau is affiliated with the Library of Congress and the Chicago Public Library. It supplies all of the hand-copied books in Braille circulated by the library and also produces work for the Chicago Board of Education and other groups.

Back to Contents

TEACHERS NEEDED FOR MONTANA SUMMER SCHOOL

The Montana Association for the Blind, Inc., Box 536, Kalispell, Montana 59901, will be accepting applications for positions on the staff of its Summer School for the Adult Blind until February 1, 1968. Please give three references. Experience in work with handicapped adults is desirable. Each applicant should be qualified to teach two or more of the courses listed below. Applications are welcomed from registered or licensed practical nurses who can teach or serve as School Hostess.

Applications for the position of School Director should be in the mail by January 5. The Hostess oversees the personal needs of students and is in charge of the recreational program.

Courses to be offered are cane travel, personal grooming, daily living, public speaking, cooking and sewing, typewriting, handwriting and braille, wood working, ceramics, loom weaving, simple leather-craft, knitting, crocheting and a variety of other small crafts. Courses in creative writing and salesmanship may also be offered. Needed, too, is a counselor for college-bound students.

The time and place of the 1968 Summer School session have not been determined as yet, but it will begin no later than the last week in June and will cover a period of five or six weeks.

For further information write to the Montana Association for the Blind at the above address.

Back to Contents

LIGHTHOUSE, UNION REACH AGREEMENT

(Reprinted from The White Cane, Nov. 1967)

A one year contract has been agreed upon between the Lighthouse of the Blind, Inc. , and the Assortment Sheet Metal Workers, Local 383.

All workers receive an hourly increase in their wages, but the sticky issue was the retention or deletion of an "agency shop clause" which means that an employee does not have to belong to the union but must pay a service fee equal to union dues. The clause has been deleted, but is subject to consideration after six months.

More than 70 blind production workers are represented by the union. A three-man shop committee and Rudolph Elmer, managing director, conducted the negotiations.

Back to Contents

TWO SCHOOLS JOIN TO TRAIN BLIND, DEAF CHILDREN

by Linda Mathews

(Reprinted from The Los Angeles Times, Oct. 25, 1967)

Two special schools for the handicapped, one in downtown Los Angeles and the other near Boston, joined forces Tuesday to train the deaf-blind victims of the 1965 German measles epidemic.

The John Tracy Clinic on Adams Boulevard, which for 23 years has trained the parents of deaf children, and the Perkins School for the Blind in Watertown, Mass. , have begun work on a home study course to provide help for several thousand deaf-blind children.

Dr. Edward J. Waterhouse, director of the Perkins School, told a press conference that no training is available for such children, though more than 2, 000 infants were born blind and deaf after a measles epidemic swept the country two years ago, infecting pregnant women.

"These children--and thousands of others we haven't yet been able to identify--are now in desperate need of training," Dr. Waterhouse said.

"A deaf child learns to cope with his handicap through the use of his eyes," Dr. Waterhouse continued. "He learns to lip-read. A blind child trains his ears to compensate for his disability."

"But the deaf-blind youngster, deprived of both senses, requires more intensive training, and at an early age if he is to live a normal life," Waterhouse said.

The proposed educational service, patterned after the correspondence course for the deaf developed by the Tracy Clinic, will provide guidance for the parents of deaf-blind children.

"Parents of such children must be encouraged to touch their children, help them learn about their bodies, and let them know there is such a thing as speech," Mrs. Spencer Tracy, widow of the actor and founder of the Tracy Clinic, explained.

Back to Contents

NEW JERSEY CONVENTION

"The best convention we've ever had. . . the finest program. . . outstanding speakers. . .high enthusiasm among delegates!"

These and similar comments were frequently heard throughout the Tenth Annual Convention of the State Council of New Jersey Organizations of the Blind, held October 28-29, at the Empress Motel, Asbury Park, New Jersey.

And the schedule of program subjects and the array of program speakers was thought-and action-provoking and informative.

Robert S. Bray, Chief, Division for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, Library of Congress, described the history and workings of the federally-supported Books for the Blind Program, and introduced the librarian and other employees of the recently-established library for the blind in Trenton, New Jersey.

Dr. Mae Davidow, teacher at the Overbrook School for the Blind and member of the NFB executive committee, discussed the use of the abacus as a helpful tool for blind persons.

Dr. Thomas Benham, physics professor at Haverford College, Pennsylvania, and founder of Science for the Blind, described and demonstrated various devices which had been developed to meet special employment and everyday living needs of blind persons.

Miss Marie Morrison, regional representative for New England and New Jersey of the American Foundation for the Blind, explained the services provided by the AFB, and exhibited a variety of tools and aids which had been devised to reduce or eliminate the handicapping counsequences of blindness.

John Nagle, Washington office chief of the NFB, gave a report of the Federation's activities and accomplishments in the 90th Congress.

Then there was a panel on the model white cane law- -moderated by- John Nagle, with panelists Commissioner Lloyd McCorkle, New Jersey Department of Institutions and Agencies; George S. Pfaus, Director, Division on Civil Rights of New Jersey; and Carl Hvarre, Deputy Director, Commission for the Blind in New Jersey.

One hundred and forty-six Federationists and friends were in attendance at the convention banquet, with John Nagle as the featured speaker.

Much organizational business was considered--reports were read, resolutions adopted, and policy positions discussed and determined upon.

Elections were held and the following were elected to serve a one-year term of office: Myles Crosby, president; Eugene Kirkland, first vice-president; Esther Epaminonda, second vice-president; Nicholas Kovak, secretary; and Henry Duser, treasurer.

Back to Contents

INFANTS BLINDED BY INFECTION GET NEW HOPE

by Effie Alley

(Reprinted from Chicago's American, October 31, 1967)

A new "peep hole" operation for babies born blind as the result of rubella infection was described by a Philadelphia ophthamologist, who said it may point the way to saving the sight of most affected youngsters.

Babies whose eyes have been affected before birth by rubella infection in their mothers, usually have cataracts, a cloudy condition of the lens which prevents light getting through to the retina. The retina is most often normal in these youngsters.

Theoretically, removal of the cloudy lenses should give them good vision. However, it often had the opposite effect, setting up complications which totally destroyed the eye. Dr. Myron Yanoff of the University of Pennsylvania explained.

Since lens removal is highly successful in infants with cataracts from other causes, he and his associates began studying the reasons for poor results in rubella babies. Their research revealed that the lens of the eye in these infants is literally a sac of virus.

In older persons the lens can be removed as a whole without rupture of its capsule. But in children and young people up to about age 20, this is impossible because the lens adheres closely to the sight-essential jelly-like substance which fills the eyeball.

Thus, in babies and young people, the lens material must be broken up by a tiny needle and then drawn off by a syringe.

In the rubella baby this procedure spreads the active virus throughout the eye to set up inflamation and infection which soon ruins the whole eye, the doctor said in a paper and interview at the meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology in the Palmer House.

He explained that rubella-caused cataracts usually form in the center of the lens, leaving a clear area around it. K his pupil could dilate, the child could see around the cataract obstruction but a rigid pupil which cannot be dilated is another fault of the rubella baby's eye.

To give these babies vision temporarily until the rubella virus dies off and the cataract can be removed safely, the Philadelphia doctors cut a tiny peep hold through that part of the iris just above the pupil.

The babies begin to see the day after the operation, Dr. Yanoff said and added:

"It's amazing to watch the little things, who have been simply lying there immobile, start looking around and even reaching out."

The peep hole gives babies enough vision to learn something about the world, to learn to feed themselves and to walk, the doctor continued in advising that lens removal be delayed until at least 2 years of age and possibly three.

The value of doing less rather than more for rubella bibies at an early age is shown by two series of cases in his own hospital. Dr. Yanoff said.

Of 53 cataract operations on 35 babies, 43 percent developed serious complications resulting in blindness. But of 61 peep hole operations on 40 other rubella children, there were only four minor complications which were soon cleared up.

Back to Contents

THE BLIND POPULATION IN ENGLAND AND WALES IN 1966

(Reprinted from The Horizon. No. 440, Sept.-Oct. 1967)

The latest statistical report issued by the Ministry of Health reveals, that at the end of last year, there were 101,273 registered blind persons resident in England and Wales, which was an increase of 1, 466 over the 1965 figure of 99,807. The trends shown in the Ministry's previous reports continued, and it is not surprising that the age group 60 to 64 and all the age groups over 70 showed increases; but it is striking evidence of the increasing longevity of the population to learn that the greatest increase in any group occurred in the 90 and over group which rose by 564 to 6,868, On the other hand, as it was reasonable to expect, the numbers in the age group 11 to 15 and in all the groups between 30 and 59, showed a decrease, the greatest being in the 40-49 group which dropped by 138.

At the end of last December, 9,936 registered blind persons were in employment--89 fewer than a year before. This was entirely due, however, to a reduction in the number in sheltered employment, for, in spite of the adverse employment situation, the number in open employment rose by 44 to 6,326--an achievement for which the Ministry of Labor's Placement Service deserves credit. On the other hand, the number of blind workers in the sheltered workshops was reduced by 97 to 2,570, and the number of home workers by 36 to 840. The number of those undergoing training showed a small increase--302 as against 286. Of these, 12 fewer were being trained for sheltered employment, 19 more for open employment and 9 more for the professions. The principle occupations in which registered blind workers were employed remains unchanged and, for the second time, machine tool operating is significantly at the top of the list, followed by basket making, and, following our previous practices, we give below the detailed figures with figures for 1965 in brackets, vis:

Machine Tool Operating 885 (880)
Basket Making 823 (857)
Telephone Operating 653 (666)
Brush Making 605 (631)
Laboring 548 (575)
Typing and Secretarial 572 (570)
Knitting 428 (472)
Domestic Workers 457 (432)
Fitting and Assembly 445 (418)
Craft and Production Workers 413 (412)
Mat Making 335 (362)
Piano Tuning 298 (303)
Packers, etc. 278 (289)
Shop Management 270 (269)
Massage and Physiotherapy 252 (259)
Bedding and Upholstery 200 (201)
Social Welfare, including placement officers 114 (113)

At the end of 1966, there were 1,412 blind persons capable and available for employment, compared with 1,273 in 1965 of whom 323 had been trained and there were 17,397 neither available nor capable of employment, below the age of 65. Of those 65 and over, 69, 755 were unemployed.

Blind persons in homes and hospitals, at the close of last year, totaled 13,803, which was 364 more than in 1965. Of these 2, 888 were in homes for the blind, 4,803 in other homes and 95 in homes provided under Section 28 of the National Health Service Act. The total number in hospitals of various kinds was 4,592, which was 61 below the figure shown in the Ministry's report for 1965.

Back to Contents

DECEPTIVE DEMEANOR

(Reprinted from Science News, Oct. 21, 1967)

To judge a man's honesty and integrity, shut your eyes and listen.

The old saw that appearances can be deceiving turns out to have basis in fact, according to a team of University of Michigan psychologists who tested 200 college students on their ability to judge honesty.

Voice and language carried more truth than demeanor and physical appearance.

To test their hypothesis. Dr. Norman Maier and research assistant James Thurber staged interviews between four "suspects," accused of cheating on an exam, and their "professors." Two of the suspects played cheaters; two played non-cheaters, and the students tried to distinguish between them after either watching the interviews, listening to tapes or reading transcripts.

The listeners and readers were better judges by a significant margin, than those who had both seen and heard the interviews, "Juries are composed of untrained observers and often must make judgments about the integrity of a witness. The witness is always present and. . . may serve as a distractor," suggests the psychologists.

Back to Contents

BLIND MICHIGANDER SERVES ON JURY

November 1, 1967

Dr. Jacobus tenBroek, Editor, The Braille Monitor, Berkeley, California 94708

Dear Dr. tenBroek:

I have been following the case of Mr. Edwin R. Lewinson in the MONITOR with much interest and so was disappointed to learn when I picked up my October, 1967 issue, received today, that he has lost his case in the Appellate Division of the New York Supreme Court.

This case interests me particularly because it contrasts the unenlightened treatment that Professor Lewinson has been receiving with the enlightened attitude I experienced here in Calhoun County, Michigan.

Late in 1963 I received two large forms to be filled out from the Circuit Court of Calhoun County and a statement informing me that I was to appear for jury duty on such-and-such a date in January, 1964, and that I would serve throughout the three -month period of the winter term.

I filled out the two forms and returned them. Also I appeared in the Circuit Court office on the date in January, 1964, previously designated. When a clerical worker on the staff of the Court saw me probing along in front of me with my white stick, she informed me that she was almost certain that I could apply for exemption from duty as a juror.

I quickly said that I did not wish to seek such exemption. I had heard rumors to the effect that blind people had been excluded from jury duty on all sorts of flimsy grounds, and I thought, "If it has happened before, it can happen again." I determined that unless one or other of the attorneys dismissed me either peremptorily or on stated grounds, I would go through with jury duty at all cost to prove that the blind can perform this duty of a citizen as capably as can anyone else.

So the clerical worker showed me into the court room. I sat down and put away my folding stick, and was soon conversing with my fellow prospective jurors. I answered when I heard my name in the roll call. Then the judge began to detail the nature of jury duty in general, assuming, correctly, that most of us had never served on a jury before.

After that the first case was called, and a specific jury was chosen. Approximately 40 people were serving on the full compliment of jurors for the three-month term, but of course only twelve of these would be chosen for each specific case.

And, lo and behold, I heard my name being called for duty on the first case. Few of the people in the room knew that I could not see until I started feeling my way with my stick in the general direction of the jury box. I found it, and finally I found myself seated and another juror was being called.

But the county prosecutor and the lawyer for the defendant had still to question the jurors in the box, and I thought to myself, "You can still get heaved."

Some of the jurors around me in the box did get "heaved," on one ground or another. One or two were dismissed peremptorily (i.e., without a reason being given for the dismissal). But neither lawyer said boo to me, and when both the prosecutor and lawyer for the defendant concluded their questioning, I stood with the other jurors and took the oath. I was in.

The case was a criminal one in which the plaintiff accused the defendant of unlawfully driving away his car which had been parked on a street in Battle Creek, Mich.

As the questioning proceeded through the morning hours I began to draw an opinion from the facts, so much so that when we went to lunch I could hardly resist comparing notes with the other jurors. But I didn't do this because I knew it would cook my goose as a juror and might even result in a mistrial. Yet as the afternoon session began, my conviction grew--namely, that the defendant was not guilty as charged.

This woman, the defendant, owned a house here in Battle Creek, and right across from it was a vacant lot were a man was putting out a graden in the spring of 1963. He often parked his car by the vacant lot as he worked; and, when he felt "bushed" from too much digging, he often went over and sat on the front porch and had a beer with the woman. It got so that he even began giving her permission to use his car to run down to the store and buy groceries while he was working. In fact, she began to feel so free to use his car that she hardly tooted the horn sometimes as she drove off to signify that she had an errand to run. But on one particular day the man had a chip on his shoulder for some reason, so when he saw the woman going down the street in his car, he ran to a telephone and reported his car being driven away unlawfully.

My opinion by the time we were shown into the jury room was this: the woman was not guilty of driving away the car unlawfully because over the period of time that she had known the man she had received a kind of implied consent to use his car whenever she wanted to. But I also thought that I would be the only one in that jury room to hold that opinion. I am often alone in my opinions.

But, when we took our first ballot, I was happy to learn that four others held my view, making the score seven for guilty to five for acquittal. But before we went back into the courtroom, we acquittals won over two more making the final tally seven for acquittal to five for guilty. We were never able to come closer than that which resulted in a hung jury. But the lawyer for the prosecution never tried the case again, so the final result for the defendant was as good as not guilty.

After that I was never again chosen for a specific jury though I was present for every roll call. But I do not think that this was in any way due to my being blind, for some of the people on the general roster were not even chosen once for a specific jury. Others, on the other hand, were chosen five or six times. It all depends on whether or not your name comes up when the cards are shaken in the box.

I am telling you all this in case you can, and care to, use it in any conceivable way to help Mr. Lewinson. I don't know that this would be of any help in his forthcoming appeal, but if it is, I should be glad to have you use it as you see fit.

Also, I always urge other blind now to accept jury duty if and when they are called upon to do so. Many people have an instinctive fear of it, thinking that perhaps they will send someone to life imprisonment who is not guilty. True, I didn't have much of any fear of it because I had reported many criminal and civil court cases for newspapers, radio, and TV. In fact, just a little while before that I had sat through a three-day murder trial in which a 21-year-old man received a life sentence and reported it for a TV station here in Michigan.

But to those who do fear jury duty I always try to point out that one can hardly make the gross errors of which so many are afraid. The questioning is so lucid, so orderly, so cogent, that one cannot help forming a deep conviction when all the evidence is in. The procedures are so time-tested, the being locked in the jury room, the balloting, etc., that no one of the 12 is likely to overstep his bounds in any way.

I hope that no blind person upon being summoned for jury duty will ever refuse it, for to do so will heighten the old feeling in the minds of some that the blind just can't do it.

Once during the case on which I served there was much attention paid to the street pattern in Battle Creek and the route over which the defendant drove the car until she was apprehended by city police. Some of the jurors, naturally, were from parts of Calhoun County, quite far from Battle Creek and had to have this information. I began to wonder if either lawyer would question my knowledge of the terrain. Yet neither did. And, as a matter of fact, I was most familiar with the street pattern, having done much house-to-house selling of blind-made and other products in that neighborhood. So I am convinced that the blind can make capable jurors. Perhaps not more capable than their sighted fellows, but certainly equally capable. What they may lack in vision of the eye, they may make up for in some other kind of awareness.

The trial was held in the County seat of Calhoun County, which is Marshall, twelve miles from my home in Battle Creek. I traveled to Marshall each morning when court was held by Greyhound bus, and when I did not ride home with another juror, I returned by bus. So I think no barrier of transportation or whatever should stand in the way of the blind doing this comparatively simple duty as a citizen--least of all the supposed barrier of blindness.

Very sincerely,

Harold Rowley (Member, NFB, Michigan Council of the Blind, Battle Creek Council of the Blind)
3 Maple Grove Street
Battle Creek, Mich. 49017

Back to Contents

NEVADA CONVENTION

The annual convention of the Nevada Federation of the Blind was held in Las Vegas on November 4th and 5th. The facilities of the beautiful Elks Lodge were made available to the group. Some 75 spirited federationists attended the sessions.

Karl Harris, Director of the State Health, Welfare and Rehabilitation Agency spoke concerning the many developments to enable man to control his environment. He stated that the quest for understanding and knowledge has given us control of most things today- -except ourselves. Today's poverty, Harris pointed out, is reflected in poor housing, insufficient food, and inadequate medical care. More education, training, and skills are being required today because of automation. Hence, the ranks of the poor are being swelled and social welfare programs must meet human needs.

Perry Sundquist, a member of the Executive Committee of the National Federation of the Blind, represented the NFB at the convention. He discussed the national legislation being sponsored in the 90th Congress by the NFB, He also delivered the banquet address on the "Meaning of a Federationist." Almost one hundred attended the banquet, including many representatives of the Nevada State Legislature.

Panel discussions were held on Aid to the Blind and the Visually Handicapped in Public Schools. Gene Bobeen of the Las Luminaries Chapter of the New Mexico Federation told how his Albuquerque Chapter raised funds. Dr. Lockwood, a Las Vegas Ophthalmologist, discussed the newest techniques in eye surgery.

Several amendments were made to the By-Laws of the Federation and a resolution adopted to seek a minimum grant of Aid to the Blind of $135 a month. During the sessions frank appraisals were made of the adequacies and inadequacies of the State's program of services for the blind and Aid to the Blind.

Officers elected for the ensuing year were: Jean Savage of Reno, President; K. O. Knudson of Las Vegas, First Vice-President; Peggy Stevenson of Ely, Second Vice-President; Nelly Rich of Las Vegas, Chaplain; Jim Wagner of Las Vegas, Secretary; and Charles Childers of Reno, Treasurer. The following were elected Members of the Board: Carl Clontz, Hawthorne; Cleo Fellers, Las Vegas; Barbara Chapman, Reno; and Ella Council, Las Vegas.

Back to Contents

THE SURGEONS WHO EYE THE SCORE

(Reprinted from the New York Post, Oct. 30, 1967)

CHICAGO (CDN)--The passion of some surgeons for good batting averages is causing them to bypass less -than -ideal patients who could still benefit from corneal transplants, an eye specialist said here.

"A surgeon selecting his cases only with a view to maximum results can achieve nearly 100 per cent of good results with ideal vision and with supremely happy patients," said Dr. Morris Kaplan of Denver.

"However, if he operates on all who deserve the chance for improvement then his ideal results drop down to something like 50 percent.

"And still furthermore, if he were to operate on all the eyes that come to him begging for surgical miracles, his ideal results would then drop to 10 to 20 percent.

"Probably in no other branch of surgery can the percentage of good results be planned ahead of time through patient selection as in keratoplasty [ corneal transplant]."

Speaking before the Eye -Bank Assn. of America in October, Kaplan said the concept of "good results" should be broadened to include those who are helped even minimally.

Kaplan, the association's new president, is assistant professor of Ophthalinology at the University of Colorado.

One of the common causes for failure of a corneal transplant, he said, is rejection of the tissue by the body as foreign material.

But advances being made in maintaining kidney transplants are certain to spin off to eye surgery, he added.

Back to Contents

THE BLIND WORK FOR UNCLE SAM

(Reprinted from Rehabilitation Record, Sept.-Oct. 1967)

Almost every week the number of blind persons working for the Federal Government increases. Well over 100 are employed in a variety of tasks in the Washington, D. C. area alone in professional as well as subprofessional duties.

A recent advancement in Government jobs for the Blind resulted from a pilot project sponsored by RSA and the Internal Revenue Service at Arkansas Enterprises for the Blind, in which blind persons were trained to assist taxpayers calling for help in preparing income tax returns. As a result of the pilot program, tax assistors have been hired in Little Rock, Philadelphia, Los Angeles and San Francisco, This venture has opened a new avenue that could expand into other assisting services that inform about governmental programs.

Another first happened in July when a totally blind young man went to work for the Social Security Administration as an actuary (one who calculates insurance risks and premiums).

Back to Contents

SCIENTISTS TO TEST BLOOD CLOT FIGHTER

by Arthur J. Snider

(Reprinted from the Chicago Daily News, Oct. 23, 1967)

San Francisco --An extract of human urine that holds "a most promising potential" for dissolving blood clots that provoke heart disease, stroke, lethal-lung blockage and blinding retinal damage of the eye will get a nationwide test beginning next spring.

"The time has come," Dr. Sol Sherry told the American Heart Assn. convention. "Our preliminary clinical observation is encouraging."

The drug, an enzyme called urokinase, is manufactured experimentally by Abbott Laboratories of North Chicago, 111., and Sterling Winthrop Co. For the nationwide trial they will extract the drug from urine of military recruits.

A clot-dissolving agent has long been a dream of medicine. Many have been tried over the years but have been either too toxic or fever-producing.

Sherry said scarce urokinase has been tried on about 200 patients in several medical centers and 50-percent success rate has led to the plans for the nationwide trial on selected patients.

"Many problems have been solved and the development of urokinase has moved along well," Sherry said. "However, many problems remain to be solved, the most important of which is to establish its efficiency in controlled trials."

"Only time will tell how useful this agent will prove in the treatment of disease, for opinions differ as to whether dissolving an obstructing thrombus (clot) will help the patient."

Some heart specialists believe that while a plug--eliminating enzyme may help the patient temporarily the blockage will form again.

"The only way to resolve this question is to dissolve the clot and determine whether the natural course of the disease is significantly influenced," Sherry said. "I am quite hopeful that the next few years will provide us with the answers."

The best results obtained so far with urokinase in clinical trials is in lung clots (pulmonary embolism). Sherry said.

Urokinase is made by the kidneys, presumably for the purpose of keeping the urinary tract free of fibrous deposits. It requires 200 to 300 gallons of urine for enough material to treat one patient adequately. It is infused into the vein for several hours at a time.

Back to Contents

HEARING HELD ON SUIT AGAINST BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF THE ASSOCIATION OF THE BLIND

(Reprinted from The Palmetto Auroran, Nov. 1967)

A hearing on a suit filed by twelve blind South Carolinians and others similarly situated against the Board of Directors of the Association of the Blind of South Carolina was held before the Honorable Harry M. Lightsey, the Master in Equity for Richland County, on October 11, 1967, in Columbia. The hearing consumed the day.

The suit alleged that the Board of the Association of the Blind had denied membership to qualified blind South Carolinians arbitrarily and on a discriminatory basis. Redress was sought by the Plaintiffs from the Court for the reason that the Association headquarters is located on property contributed by the State of South Carolina to the Association by a deed with a provision that the property should revert to the State under certain circumstances. This property was acquired by the State with funds collected from South Carolina taxpayers. Evidence was introduced showing that since the incorporation of the Association, funds totaling $686, 500. 00 have been appropriated to the Association by the State. The Plaintiffs contend that membership in the Association has been denied by reason of difference in opinion about the policies which should be adopted by the Board of Directors in operating the Association.

Two employees of the Association testified about the conditions under which they worked in the workshop and their salary for such labors. It was the Plaintiffs' contention that these conditions could be improved upon and that the operations of the Association would be substantially enhanced if all qualified blind taxpaying citizens of South Carolina were admitted to membership in the Association. It was their contention that as taxpaying citizens they were entitled to a voice in the operation of the Association.

The Board of Directors took the view that the Association was an eleemosynary private association and that its Board of Directors was within its right to extend membership to only those blind persons whose political philosophy and view of the policy of the Association coincided with their own. It contended that the Board could approve membership for any reason or for no reason. It contended that the more than one-half million dollars given to the Association by South Carolina's taxpayers through a grant of the General Assembly was a gift or contribution with no strings attached.

Judge Lightsey is expected to file his recommendations as to a decision with the Judge of the Richland County Court within the next few weeks.

Back to Contents

U. S. NOISE LEVEL CAN CAUSE A LOSS OF HEARING, FEDERAL EXPERT ASSERTS

(Reprinted from The New York Times, Oct. 24, 1967)

by Richard D. Lyons

MIAMI BEACH, FLA., Oct. 23--Several million Americans are being exposed daily to levels of noise that may eventually affect their hearing, a United States Public Health Service engineer said.

Herbert H. Jones, associate chief of the National Noise Study, said that as little as five hours' daily exposure to moderate noise levels for 10 years could cause hearing losses.

"The noise situation in the United States is becoming intolerable," he said in urging the promotion of governmental and private programs aimed at the abatement of excess noise.

One industrial committee, he said, recommended that the maximum permissible limit for noise be 85 decibels, a technical measure of sound intensity slightly greater than the noise that can be heard on a busy street.

Mr. Jones said he foresaw the day when all the states would have codes limiting noise pollution, the term scientists use to define the problem of excess, man-made sound.

"California, Oregon and Washington have set maximum limits on noise pollution," Mr. Jones said, adding that "it's a start but the process of limiting noise on a national basis is very slow."

Mr. Jones said the United States was lagging behind other industrialized nations in the control of noise pollution. He pointed out that Britain,

West Germany, Switzerland, Norway, Denmark and Sweden "have stringent noise ordinances."

The Public Health Service reported last month that about one-tenth of the adult American public had hearing losses of 15 decibels or more in some sound ranges. But the report did not estimate what part of this fraction was caused by noise pollution.

Decibel levels of common sounds include: quiet conversation, 20 to 35; moderately noisy home, 40 to 55; noisy office, 60 to 75; noisy factory, 80 to 95; subway train, 100 to 115, and jet engine, more than 120.

Back to Contents

BATTERY OPERATED DISC PLAYER

In searching for a battery operated disc player which would be of particular use to blind persons, SCIENCE FOR THE BLIND, Haverford, Pennsylvania 19041, has chosen the Singer HE 2205. This machine, as manufactured for Singer, plays at 45 r. p. m, and 33-1/3 r.p.m. Since most material available for the blind plays at 16-2/3 r. p. m., we have adapted the machine for this speed.

Features include the following:

Machine is compact and lightweight; can be carried easily.

Tone arm locks in place. Disc players can be moved while a record is playing without disturbance of the needle position.

Case is arranged so that needle will contact no surface except the turntable no matter how it is set down.

Turntable can be started and stopped almost instantaneously, allowing pauses without loss of recorded material.

In "stop" position turntable may be rotated backwards to review a previous phrase or sentence.

Battery life expectancy:

30-40 hours if used 3-4 hours a day

40-50 hours if used 1 hour a day.

Guaranteed for 1 year by SCIENCE FOR THE BLIND.

Print and brief braille instructions provided with all Disc Players.

Back to Contents

MONITOR MINIATURES

A featured soloist of the Young People's Symphony of the East Bay is blind clarinetist Bruce Breslauer, also reported to be a straight A student at Berkeley High School in California.

(from PC & E PROGRESS, May 1967)

Herb Sutherland of Great Falls, Montana, and Lois Goodine were married on November 6, 1967.

CONS 'ADOPT' BLIND CHILD

MICHIGAN CITY, Ind., Nov. 2 (AP)--An 8 -year -old blind orphan girl has been "adopted" by inmates of the Indiana State Prison here as a special Christmas project.

Prisoners have contributed more than $200 toward a $500 goal and the prison toy shop will make additional presents for Emma Lee Jackson, a student at the Indiana School for the Blind in Indianapolis.

(from Los Angeles Herald-Examiner Nov. 2, 1967)

On November 12, "The Chester River Federation of the Blind" was formed. It will be an affiliate of the Maryland Free State Federation of the Blind.

Roger Petersen was elected Provisional President and Judy Barnes was elected Provisional Secretary. A business meeting will be held Sunday, December 10th at 3:00 p.m. , at the Petersen residence. A full slate of officers will be elected and the year's activities will be planned.

Two Flower Children went in for a marriage license the other day, were $1 short of having the fee and borrowed the buck from Andy Anderson, the blind concessionaire in the courthouse. They were back an hour later and paid him back. Too broke to get married you say? Not at all. The groom-to-be listed his occupation as "poet." The future lies ahead.

(from Bill Fiset, Oakland Tribune Oct. 31, 1967)

The Pottawattamie County Association of the Blind was organized at the Community Action Program Center, 315 W. Broadway, Council Bluffs, Iowa, 51501, August 3rd, as a chapter of the Iowa Association of the Blind. The following officers have been elected: President, Mrs. Ruth Renshaw; Vice President, Mr. Quentin Renshaw; Secretary, Mrs. Rosalie Lindsey; Treasurer, Mr. Wyman Howard. At present, two meetings a month are being held.

Anyone living in Highland Park, Michigan or in a toll-free telephone area and who has a standard power operated tape recorder should please get in touch with Sam J. Sitt, 15741 NE 14th Avenue, North Miami Beach, Florida.

INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION ON THE MARCH

Self -organization of the blind on a world-wide basis took a giant stride forward during 1967, with five new national affiliates joining the International Federation and several other nations well on the way to membership.

The five nations newly accepted into the IFB are Japan, New Zealand, Italy, Argentina and the Philippines, In addition, organized blind groups in England and Belgium have set themselves on the path of affiliation, and indications of mounting interest in the principle of collective self-expression on the world scene have been received from several other countries.

In one of the largest national convocations of blind people ever assembled, more than 2, 000 persons met last May in Kumamoto, Japan, for the annual convention of the Japanese Federation of the Blind. Following a vote by the convention delegates, the JFB's Executive Committee formally acted to affiliate with the International Federation. The three -day convention, under the able leadership of President Jingoro Kanari and Secretary-General Masahiro Muratani, featured an address by Russell Kletzing, treasurer of the International Federation of the Blind. The Japanese organization, one of the largest and strongest in the world, came into being twenty years ago as a means of unifying the many independent groups of blind people in Japan, and today represents the major force for improvement of the condition of the country's substantial blind population.

Meanwhile in Manila, during the same month, the General Assembly of the Blind of the Philippines took action to join the IFB at its general meeting on May 16. The IFB's Russ Kletzing, who is also secretary of the U.S. National Federation of the Blind, was a guest speaker along with prominent civic and national leaders. The GAB, composed of nearly all major organizations of blind people in the Philippines, is making steady progress toward the improvement of opportunities in education and employment for the sightless. The long-time leader of the Filipino blind, Rogerio Lagman, stepped down as president at the General Assembly's May meeting and was succeeded by Jose Iglesias.

At still another May convention in the far Pacific, the Dominion Association of the Blind of New Zealand voted overwhelmingly to join the International Federation. Meeting in Wellington, the picturesque New Zealand harbor town set between hills and water, the nine -year -old Dominion Association was also addressed by Russ Kletzing along with Sid Daly, representing the Australian Federation of Organizations of the Blind. Stanley Cooper was installed as president of the Dominion Association following the retirement of Cyril White who participated in the charter meetings in New York.

Earlier, the Argentine Federation of Institutions for the Blind, a nationwide association of organized blind groups, had applied for affiliation in the IFB. The Argentine Federation, founded in 1965, is headed by Jose Fernandez, president, a vending stand operator. Among its officers is Hugo Ernesto Garcia Garcilazo, treasurer, a blind lawyer and government official who represented the blind of his nation last summer at the Los Angeles convention of the U. S. National Federation of the Blind. The Argentine Federation is made up of nine member organizations in various parts of the country, most of them concerned with employment and educational opportunities, of which the oldest, the Fraternal Society of Buenos Aires, was organized more than fifty years ago.

The Italian Union of the Blind, which took action during the summer to become a part of the worldwide movement institutionalized in the IFB, is a large-scale organization with branches in all parts of Italy which, in the words of Marchello Mecchia, "unites the blind in the struggle for their social emancipation and for their entry into active life [and] has at its disposal numerous institutes for the education of the visually handicapped and for their professional training."

Besides the formal affiliations of five national organizations of the blind, the year past also witnessed developing interest in the common cause of the world's blind in many other countries along with steps toward membership on the part of independent groups in England and Belgium. The triennial convention of the National League of the Blind of Great Britain and Ireland, meeting at Blackpool last May, was highlighted by an address from the IFB's President Jacobus tenBroek. The official conference report observed that "Professor tenBroek spoke fluently of the problems of blind persons throughout the world and in the United States." After quoting extensively from the address, the report continued: "T. Parker, London Organizer, advised that the League should respond to the call of the International Federation and elect affiliation." The National League's convention, reflecting the trade union character of the organization, was devoted largely to the issue of wages in sheltered workshops for the blind, and particularly to recent protest demonstrations by blind workers who marched on Parliament seeking support in their wage struggle against shop managers -- a struggle subsequently won by the workers.

Back to Contents

MEETING OF I. F. B. EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

The Executive Committee of the International Federation of the Blind met in Vienna, Austria, on April 22, 1967, in the first official meeting of the committee since formation of the IFB in 1964.

Three major issues confronting the International Federation were discussed and acted upon by the Executive Committee during the two-day meeting. The first had to do with the qualifications necessary for membership, particularly whether groups are genuinely organizations of the blind--as distinct from agencies for the blind--and the character of their relationship with their national governments. Special attention was given to the status of blind organizations in Spain, eastern Europe, Argentina, Tunisia and other North African countries.

The second issue under discussion involved the subject of dues, which were approved in the following amounts: $1.00 for membership at large; $10.00 for Associate Members, and a minimum of $25.00 for National Members, to be paid in goods or cash. Those National Members who can afford to do so are expected to contribute considerably more.

The Executive Committee also gave attention to the forthcoming IFB convention in November, 1969. (The convention site selected by the Committee, New Delhi, has since been placed in doubt by action aimed at barring the IFB convention from India during the period of the WCWB General Assembly. ) The theme of the IFB convention will be "Development of Organizations of the Blind and Their Role in Promoting the Welfare of the Blind." Program activities were developed for the convention to be centered around three main topics: the White Cane Around the World, headed by Dr. Jacobus tenBroek of the United States; Compulsory Education of Blind Children, to be directed by Rienzi Alagiyawanna of Ceylon; and the Right of the Blind to Work, headed by Dr. Horst Geissler of West Germany.

Henri Frieman of the Netherlands was elected unanimously to occupy the post of third vice president of the International Federation of the Blind.

FRENCH BLIND CELEBRATE 50TH ANNIVERSARY

The "Amitie Des Aveugles De France," the French affiliate of the International Federation, staged an impressive fiftieth anniversary convocation in Paris June 17 through June 19, 1967, with prominent public figures and representatives of the blind from Europe and the United States in attendance.

Among those taking part in the golden anniversary festivities were Professor Jacobus tenBroek, president of the IFB; Dr. Horst Geissler, vice president of Deutsche Blindenverband, Henri Frieman, secretary of Nederlandse Blindenbond; John Jarvis, secretary-general of the World Council for the Welfare of the Blind; Roy Brown, vice president, British National Federation of the Blind; Achille Dyckmans, representing the organized blind of Belgium; and Ami Mermod, president of the Swiss Federation of the Blind. The delegates were addressed by Francois Charles, director-general of social action under the French Ministry of Social Affairs.

Among the highlights of the meeting were a series of addresses by Andre Nicolle, who is secretary-general of the French association and a member of the executive committees of both the International Federation and the World Council. The major theme of the convention was the progress of the French blind organization since its founding in 1917.

U. S. NATIONAL FEDERATION HOLDS CONVENTION

The National Federation of the Blind of the United States held its 27th annual convention in Los Angeles during early July, 1967. The four-day meeting struck a note of confidence and independence, symbolized by the banquet speech of President Jacobus tenBroek vigorously challenging the policies and attitudes of agencies for the blind-as opposed to voluntary organizations of blind people.

Three distinguished foreign guests, two from South America and one from Africa, addressed the convention. They were Hugo Ernesto Garcia Garcilazo, treasurer of the Argentine Federation of Institutions for the Blind; Ernani Vidon, of Brazil, a teacher in a school for the blind, and Bairu Tafia, of Ethiopia, who is a student of history at Howard University in Washington, D. C.

The convention theme of solidarity and self-determination was emphasized by several speakers in addition to Dr. tenBroek. The broad program of convention activities, enjoyed by approximately 800 blind delegates and their families from all parts of the country, included a variety of panel discussions, legislative and legal progress reports, and social events.

No less than six different group discussions were presented during the convention, on such subjects as new careers for the blind, state programs and services, problems of public assistance within the social security program, vending stands for the blind, and the future prospects of the deaf-blind.

In his banquet address to the convention. Dr. tenBroek declared that "the sharpest lesson of democracy is that no professional elite or caste, administrative or military or scientific, must be permitted to usurp the power of the people and their elected representatives to make the decisions of life and liberty, or of life and death." He criticized the social agencies which traditionally have governed the lives of blind persons, and observed that their major mistake is "their persistent refusal to acknowledge and accept the elementary principles of democracy and humanity" with respect to participation by the blind themselves.

BRITISH SHELTERED SHOP WORKERS WIN FIGHT

The power of organized action and self-expression among the blind has been graphically illustrated in England with the resounding success of protest demonstrations by blind workers of sheltered workshops. The militant actions, which took place in May and June, resulted in a substantial immediate increase in the minimum wage for blind workers, with a further increase in September. Equally important, the action of the organized blind under leadership of the National League of the Blind has restored connections with the Manual Workers Trades Union, so that in future blind workers will receive whatever increases are achieved for manual workers in general.

In the first of the demonstrations, on May 10, 1967, blind workers from all over the British Isles--including Scotland, Wales and northern Ireland--marched en masse to the House of Commons to protest the failure of employers to consider their wage demands. The grievances centered around the withholding from blind workers of pay raises granted to other manual workers. Local marches and protest gatherings paralleling the London activity were also held. When the May 10 march on the national legislature failed to change the attitudes of employers, plans were completed for the second demonstration which took place on June 14. Still a third dramatic mass demonstration in Trafalgar Square was planned by the National League for July 8, but was made unnecessary when the workshop employers met in an emergency session and agreed to extend the wage raises to blind workers.

U.S., AUSTRALIA BATTLE WORLD COUNCIL

Despite a long and wearying struggle by organizations of the blind in the United States and Australia, the World Council for the Welfare of the Blind continues to violate its own constitution by denying adequate representation within its ranks to the organized blind of both countries.

In the Australian case the organized blind, represented by the Australian Federation of Organizations of the Blind, remain completely excluded from the World Council as a result of the opposition of the controlling Australian National Council for the Blind, a collection of agencies. Both Australian delegates to the WCWB are appointed by the National Council, which has turned a deaf ear to the arguments of the Australian Federation that the organized blind should be entitled to select one of the national delegates.

Apart from the basic democratic concept that the blind themselves should have representation in organizations speaking for them, the controversy centers upon the interpretation of a 1964 amendment to the WCWB constitution which states: "Where in any country there exists a substantial group of blind persons organized into associations and where there are blind persons occupying leading positions in agencies for the blind, adequate provision should be made for their representation in the national delegation."

This amendment had been introduced by the agency-dominated delegations of the U.S. and the United Kingdom in order to counter an amendment proposed by the organized blind which would have guaranteed at least 50 percent representation to organizations of the blind in countries where they exist. The amendment which was approved in 1964, although a compromise, did provide both in letter and in spirit for representation of the organized blind in national delegations to the WCWB.

On the basis of the constitutional amendment, the Australian Federation has argued that it is entitled to a seat on the delegation consistent with the requirement of "adequate provision" for representatives of the organized blind. However, when pressed for a ruling on the matter a year ago, WCWB President Eric Boulter held that the selection of the national delegation is a purely internal affair, in effect upholding continued dominance by the National Council. Boulter further interpreted the '64 amendment to require only that adequate representation be given either to organizations of the blind or to blind persons working in the agencies.

Meanwhile, within the United States delegation to the "WCWB, the same dispute over interpretation of the constitutional amendment has come to be a central theme of numerous discussions, committee meetings and correspondence among the. six-man membership--five of whom are agency representatives and only one, Professor Jacobus tenBroek, is a representative of the organized blind. In an exchange of letters last summer. Dr. tenBroek, president of the International Federation of the Blind, vigorously defended the demand of the organized blind for at least equal representation on the delegation against the equally emphatic denials of M. R. Barnett, chairman of the U.S. delegation and prominent agency director.

Regarding the question of "adequate representation" of blind organizations in the World Council, Dr. tenBroek wrote: "Obviougly, one's judgment of adequacy in the circumstances depends entirely upon one's view of the significance of the role to be played by organizations of the blind in organizations and programs designed for the welfare of the blind and in particular in the WCWB. If you think that role is minimal, then clearly adequate representation is given when minimal representation is provided. Those who think the role is nonexistent and that such organizations are to be disparaged. . . would conceivably hold that adequate representation is provided even when the blind are completely excluded. If you believe, as I do, that the role of organizations of the blind in the WCWB is of great importance and even of the utmost importance, then it follows easily that adequate representation is given only if the blind are provided with at least 50% of the seats."

At year's end, the parallel struggles of the Australian and United States blind organizations for a significant voice in the World Council appear destined to meet continued opposition on the part of the agency-controlled leadership of the global association. Although the resistance of those in power represents a flagrant violation of the WCWB constitution, it appears unlikely that the agencies can be induced to vacate any of their own seats until such time as a formal reformation and redistribution of delegate seats is accomplished.

Back to Contents