JANUARY -- 1967



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
Assistant Editor: Floyd W. Matson
2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708

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



By Kenneth Jernigan

By Bill Taylor




By James R. Carlock




By A. N. Venkatasubramanian




By Robert H. Clark



By Isabelle L. D. Grant

By Ramona Willoughby








By Professor Jacobus tenBroek




Office of the President
2652 Shasta Road
Berkeley, California 94708

1 January 1967
NFB-1; 67-1

Twenty-six bills -- 13 in the Senate and 13 identical bills in the House of Representatives -- containing proposals to improve the conditions, equalize the opportunities and reduce the disadvantages of persons disabled by blindness or other physical impairments -- this will be the minimum legislative program of the organized blind in the 90th Congress.

Measures directed toward bettering the lot of recipients of Aid to the Blind, sheltered shop workers, and disability insurance beneficiaries; measures intended to help employed blind persons and improve the chances for employment of employable blind persons; measures that assert and clarify the rights of all physically disabled Americans; measures that have been elusive goals of the National Federation of the Blind in many Congresses, and new measures recently adopted as Federation goals -- these represent the heaviest legislative load yet undertaken by the organized blind in Congress. The support of every Federationist will be needed if our bills before the 90th Congress are to become enacted federal law.

As developments in the House or Senate call for Federation action, special legislative bulletins will be sent post haste to state and local leaders. For the benefit of those for whom printed information presents a difficulty all legislative bulletins will appear in the BRAILLE MONITOR.

In addition, the BRAILLE MONITOR will contain articles describing and explaining our bills in detail and giving their House and Senate numbers.

Following is a summary of NFB bills to be introduced in the 90th Congress --

Disability Insurance: Having twice secured Senate passage of our bill to liberalize the provisions of the federal Disability Insurance Program for Blind Persons, Federation efforts will be concentrated on holding Senate support and on gaining sufficient support in the House of Representatives to assure passage by both bodies in the 90th Congress.

The Federation bill would permit a person who is blind in accordance with the generally accepted definition of blindness and who has worked at least a year and one-half in Social Security-covered employment, to draw disability insurance cash benefits so long as he remains blind and irrespective of his earnings.

The federal Medicare Program, presently limited to retired persons who have attained the age of 65, would be expanded so that disability insurance beneficiaries may receive hospital care and medical assistance.

Aid to the Blind: Continuing our long-time struggle to improve conditions and opportunities for needy blind persons, we will again seek to eliminate the restrictive and oppressive features of the federal-state programs of Aid to the Blind.

The Federation's Aid to the Blind amending bills would remove the 12-month limitation on the exemption of additional income and resources of a recipient having a rehabilitation plan for self-support; eliminate residence requirements and the imposition of liens; limit or eliminate relatives' responsibility; establish a minimum needs standard for recipients; require that a state which combines its adult aid programs under Title XVI of the Social Security Act adopt, for its combined plan of aid the most liberal eligibility and resource standards which prevail in a single aid program; assure that a state which combines its adult aid programs under Title XVI may still maintain a separate program of Aid to the Blind and still receive federal financial sharing in the cost of such program; allow a state which combines its aid programs under Title XVI to resume separate and categorical aid programs; require that social services be given only to recipients who request them, that the amount of aid granted not be contingent upon the acceptance of such services, and that such services be provided on a categorical basis; finally, change the federal-state financial matching formula to increase the amount of federal money in Aid to the Blind programs.

Sheltered Workshops: Having finally secured, after seven years of struggle, a statutory minimum wage for sheltered shop workers, the National Federation of the Blind will try, in the 90th Congress, to raise this minimum from the statutory level of 50 percent of the prevailing federal hourly minimum wage to 75 percent, and then, 1 year later, to the prevailing hourly minimum wage, in order that physically disabled workers in such facilities may have earnings that will allow them, more than a starvation standard.

A bill to amend the National Labor Relations Act to nullify the San Diego and St. Louis cases which excluded sheltered shop workers from the protection of this Act will enable sheltered shop workers to organize and bargain through chosen spokesmen with shop management.

Vending Stands: Another Federation-supported bill would amend the Randolph-Sheppard Vending Stand Act so as: to give greater protection and an opportunity for increased income to blind vending stand operators; to increase the availability of suitable vending stand locations in federal buildings and on federal property; and to establish a Presidentially-appointed appeals board for resolving disputes and differences which arise between federal and state officials over the administration and operation of the Randolph -Sheppard Vending Stand Program.

Specifically this bill would: provide for the creation of a high-level appeals board; expand the list of articles that can be sold in a vending stand to include foods and beverages which may be prepared at the vending stand site; provide that a vending stand license may be revoked or withheld only for cause, and establish a protective procedure under such circumstances; establish the federal hourly minimum wage for employees of blind vending stand operators; provide for the distribution of vending machine income among operators of stands, state licensing agencies, (specifying the purposes for which such funds may be used), and associations of employees who work on the premises; require consultation with officials of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare to make sure that suitable vending stand sites and facilities are provided in all buildings occupied by agencies and departments of the Federal Government; allow the continued levying of assessment charges against the income of vending machines under certain specified circumstances; broaden the term "vending stand" to include automatic vending machines, cafeterias, "snack-bars", and cart service when operated in connection with a vending stand; give requisites for a fair hearing procedure.

Vocational Rehabilitation: Although the 89th Congress removed economic need as a federal requirement to receive vocational rehabilitation service, few states have taken advantage of this change to eliminate the "means" test in their vocational rehabilitation programs. The Federation will seek congressional action to outlaw financial need as a condition for eligibility for any vocational rehabilitation service.

The Rights of Physically Disabled Persons: Two bills will be introduced in the 90th Congress to assert and clarify the rights of physically disabled persons. They would put the Model White Cane Law upon a national basis so far as that is constitutionally possible. For details of these two measures see the December 1966 issue of the MONITOR.

National Eye Institute: The organized blind will give vigorous support to a bill which would establish a National Eye Institute in the National Institutes of Health system to conduct and sponsor research into the causes of blindness.

Postal Rates: Again in the 90th Congress, a bill will be proposed to broaden the scope of the "free" postal privilege available to agencies and institutions providing services to blind persons, extend this privilege to include additional types of materials provided by such agencies, and include in this privilege braille, large print, and recorded correspondence to and from blind persons.


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Office of the President
2652 Shasta Road
Berkeley, California 94708

1 January 1967
NFB-2; 67-2

by Kenneth Jernigan

Arrangements are now complete! The Hawaii trip is on! The prices are unbelievably low and the itinerary is fabulous!

Those attending the Louisville Convention will remember that one of the momentous decisions which was made was that we should investigate the possibility of a vacation trip to Hawaii immediately following the 1967 Los Angeles Convention. Dr. tenBroek gave me the task of trying to make the right arrangements at the right price. For several months I have been looking and negotiating, and I believe you will like the results.

The Los Angeles convention will end at 5 o'clock, Friday afternoon, July 7. The next morning, Saturday, July 8, we will leave Los Angeles by Jet Airliner at 11:00 a.m., arriving in Honolulu at 1:10 p.m. This will be a memorable flight. Upon arriving in Honolulu we will receive a lei greeting and will be transported to the Moana Hotel on Waikiki Beach. It should be emphasized that the Moana is one of Honolulu's better hotels in one of the best locations on the beach.

On Sunday, July 9, no planned activities in the morning. In the afternoon we go to the famous Queen Surf for Luau festivities (complete with rum punch and all the trimmings) -- climaxed by an evening of dining and entertainment.

Monday, July 10, no planned activities for the morning. After lunch we cruise Pearl Harbor.

Tuesday, July 11, a full day. In the morning we go to the International Market Place with its many shops. In the afternoon we will be taken for a cruise on the Catamaran Boat. It will be an afternoon and evening to remember -- entertainment including rum punch, beer, and a delightful dinner.

Wednesday, July 12 , at noon we will be guests of the famous Webley Edwards at his "Hawaii Calls" broadcast. To the sound of surf and beautiful music we will have a buffet luncheon.

Thursday, July 13, another full day! We tour the pineapple canneries and a perfume factory.

Friday, July 14. We say Aloha to Hawaii and depart on Jet Airliner at 10:00 a.m., arriving in Los Angeles at 4:55 p.m.

The total price for this fun-filled package is only $290.00 plus $2.16 tax. This includes round trip air fare from Los Angeles to Hawaii, transportation between airport and hotel in Hawaii, and transportation to all 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 considerably higher. We were able to get these rates by reserving a block of twin-bedded rooms for our group.

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.

We will sell tickets to the first 200 people who submit their names and a $50.00 deposit. A name will not be entered on the list until the deposit has actually been received. If there are more than 200 wishing to go (and we believe that there will be), we will make every effort to fill requests as long as we can. However, we emphasize that at this time we can only guarantee the first 200 and that reservations will be on a first come, first serve basis.

Please do not send reservations 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 S. 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 emergency cancellations all of your money will be returned to you.

I repeat that the total price for this wonderful vacation trip is only $290.00 plus $2.16 tax. See you in Hawaii this summer.

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by Bill Taylor

Editor's note: For the reasons given in Bill Taylor's account, the Argo case must stand as a landmark decision and opinion for the blind of the nation. It is an organizational triumph for the NFB and it is a personal triumph for Bill Taylor. Bill prepared the brief on behalf of the NFB and made the oral argument before the Supreme Court. The brief is a model of clear and forceful presentation and sharp legal analysis. The court's opinion reflects the brief in many particulars. Bill insisted that we reprint and append to the brief the House of Lord's opinion in the Haley case (not generally available in the United States) and portions of "The Right to Live in the World" (then still in manuscript form), with obvious impact on the court. It is particularly fitting that Bill should have played a key role in the case -- his name has been associated with progress in this field for the last 30 years.

The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania renders a far-reaching decision enlarging legal protection to blind pedestrians!

On October 3, 1966, the Supreme Court sustained a verdict in favor of James Argo, a blind broom salesman who was severely injured by a fall in a place of business where he had gone to solicit sales. The store owner had proceeded in a peculiar way when rebuilding his place of business. He had completed the outside in every respect, including the installation of the finished glass door complete with lock, handle, etc. Oddly enough, however, he had not put in the floor. Argo entered carefully, prudently feeling with his cane and perceived what he took to be the floor, but which in reality was only a ledge.

The owner defended on the grounds that it was not reasonable for him to have foreseen that a blind pedestrian would enter the store and fall because there was no flooring.

The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania held that:

One: With respect to the rights of a blind pedestrian, freedom of mobility is as much a fundamental right of American citizenry as freedom of speech.

Two: It is the duty of those engaged in operations on a highway to take reasonable care not to endanger those persons who might reasonably be expected to walk along the pavement, and that that duty was owed to blind persons if the operators foresaw, or ought to have foreseen, that blind persons might use the pavement.

Three: In Pennsylvania there are some 15,000 blind persons. Therefore, it is foreseeable that blind people may make their appearance anywhere that the public is entitled to go.

Four: Due care on the part of a blind pedestrian includes a reasonable effort to compensate for his unfortunate affliction by the use of artificial aids for discerning obstacles in his path. A blind person is not bound to discover everything which a person of normal vision would. He is bound to use due care under the circumstances.

Five: A blind broom salesman, going to a place of business to solicit sales, is a "business invitee" to whom the property owner owes an affirmative duty of keeping his premises reasonably safe for business visitors such as plaintiff and of giving warning of any failure to maintain them in that condition.

This landmark decision, which declares and vigorously extends the protection afforded to blind pedestrians by the law, represents still another outstanding victory of the National Federation of the Blind. It is an example of splendid cooperation among Federationists:

About a year ago, we here in Pennsylvania learned of the appeal of this case to the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania -- the litigation in the lower court had been handled by a firm of lawyers highly skilled in handling negligence cases, but with limited experience in matters relating to the special problems of the blind. It was immediately obvious that this would present a rare opportunity for the Federation to strengthen the legal position of the blind. Readers of the MONITOR will recall that some months earlier Dr. tenBroek had brought to the attention of the blind the important decision of the House of Lords in the now-famous Haley case. In addition, we, of course, knew of his brilliant treatise on "The Disabled in the Law of Torts."

The similarity between the two cases was instantly apparent, and of greatest importance to the blind of the whole country, and it was essential that this case should not be presented as just a run-of-the-mill negligence action, for such treatment would confront us with the serious risk of having a hastily written opinion based on legal propositions which might long stand as precedents to be cited in the future in suits instituted by blind plaintiffs -- there are already in the case books several such decisions which are often cited against blind litigants.

In line with these thoughts, a petition was filed with the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania in which it was asked that the Federation be permitted to participate in the arguments in order that our contentions be presented. The defendant filed objections to the Federation's participation, but the Court granted the prayer of the Federation's petition. We were gratified to learn that it had allowed us not only to file a brief Amicus Curiae (friend of the court), but, also, we were allowed to participate in the oral argument.

Both our brief and oral argument were built on Dr. tenBroek's brilliant Law Review article, well known to MONITOR readers as "The Right to Live in the World: The Disabled in the Law of Torts," and on the British decision in the Haley case. Just as it is commonly said that every football play theoretically results in a touchdown, likewise, lawyers write briefs in the fond hope that the court's opinion will reflect the points upon which the brief rested. In court, as on the football field, such hopes are seldom realized. The outcome here was exceedingly gratifying.

As is clear from even a cursory reading of this opinion, the Court gave considerable weight to the tenBroek article. "Freedom of mobility is as much a fundamental right of American citizenry as freedom of speech." To have this advantageous proposition embodied in the opinion, even if it stood alone, would far more than justify the time, labor and expense put into this case. Dr. tenBroek, I want to stress, has conferred a fundamental benefit upon the blind and has started judges reflecting on problems of the blind in a manner virtually certain to produce lasting and salutary results.

This Argo decision, following the Haley opinion reasoning, goes far toward resolving in our favor the perplexing question of whether the blind on our streets are sufficiently numerous that their appearance should be anticipated. Often it has been contended, and was so contended in this case, that the person doing work should not be expected to anticipate the presence of the blind. This is a crucial point since a defendant is liable only if he fails to take care against occurrences which were reasonably foreseeable.

The defendant argued that a blind peddler coming into a place of business to solicit sales is a trespasser and hence, has few rights. Accordingly, it was gratifying to have the Court rule that blind broom salesmen coming into a place of business are "business invitees," precisely as are other salesmen.

There is good reason for hoping that just as the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania was favorably impressed by Dr. tenBroek's thorough research and constructive social and legal reasoning which underlie his excellent article, and also followed the reasoning of the British House of Lords in deciding this case, there are good grounds for
anticipating that other United States courts will follow the reasoning of the Pennsylvania Court; and, consequently, we can hope for the extension of greater legal protection to blind pedestrians.

Above all, and let no one forget, that this victory for a blind plaintiff and this strengthening of the cause of the blind resulted solely and directly from cooperation made possible by the National Federation of the Blind.

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[ J 192]

Eastern District

Appellant in No. 215

Nos. 215, 216 January Term, 1966

Appellant in No. 216

Appeals From Judgment of the Court of Common Pleas of Delaware County in No. 1621, March Term, 1962, and No. 1007, June Term, 1962.



James Argo, 38 years of age, and blind since birth, eked out a living selling from door to door items produced by the Blind House in Philadelphia. He usually carried some 18 brooms and a quantity of whisk brooms, feathered dusters and bowl dusters. It was his custom to commit himself to a street and then methodically, energetically, and perseveringly enter every door that opened to the turn of a knob and, in that establishment, offer his wares. Simple as was this operation, it was accomplished with professional care, the technique having been taught to him at the Overbrook School for the Blind. He would open the door with his right hand, probe with his inevitably accompanying white cane to make certain of the footing inside the door, place his right shoulder against the open door to hold it open and then swing in on his left side with his dangling brooms, brushes and other commodities.

On the morning of July 11, 1960, he was operating in the 6700 block on Market Street in Upper Darby, Delaware County, a business section of the town. He knew this area well because, for the preceding ten or twelve years, every three or four months, he had visited every store in that block. He approached No. 6774 on that street with great caution, laden as he was with his merchandise and carrying the most crushing burden that can ever be heaped upon a man's back, mind and soul, that of blindness.

Tapping and searching with his cane he noted a surface which he probed to the depth of three feet. He took it to be the floor. Ill-fatedly, it was not. It was merely a ledge unconnected with a floor, which was wholly absent. He stepped in and plunged, brooms, brushes and all, 18 feet to the concrete pavement beneath, sustaining serious injuries.

The premises were owned by the Good Company whose president was Sidney Goodstein, who, peculiarly enough, was engaged as a contractor in repairing and renovating the building. James Argo filed two suits in trespass, one against the Good Company and the other against Goodstein as an individual. The two suits were consolidated for trial and the jury returned a verdict against each of the defendants in the sum of $13,750. The Court molded the verdicts into a total sum of $27,500 against both defendants. The defendants appealed, asking for judgment n.o.v. or a new trial.

In seeking a reversal of the jury's verdict, the defendants argue the case as if the evidence presented in their behalf were uncontradicted or as if the jury had confirmed their view of the litigation. In this assumption, those defendants are ill-advised.

The defendants assert that, contrary to what the plaintiff said, he could never have previously visited the building at 6774 Market Street because it had just recently been constructed over a parking lot. But Goodstein himself testified:

Q. You say that Mr. Argo had been in to this, shall we call it the former store on the same site, as you put it, as you recall, several times, and you so stated to his wife at the hospital?

A. That is correct. [Emphasis supplied.]

Q. And he said that he made the rounds there about every three or four months; would that be your recollection as to the. . . ?

A. I can only remember that I possibly saw him once a year or every other year, or in some case of that nature. . . .

Q. Do you recall whether or not you ever bought anything from him?

A. Yes.

Q. You did buy something from him?

A. Yes.

Q. Do you recall what you may have bought?

A. It was either a push broom or a whisk broom or something of that nature.

And there was more. The accident occurred at 11:30 in the morning. That evening Mr. Goodstein saw the wife of the plaintiff at the hospital. She testified:

Q. At any time did you see Sidney Goodstein?

A. That evening he had come in, introduced himself as Sidney Goodstein and said that my husband fell in his store.

She testified further: "He said my husband fell in his store and not to worry about anything."


Q. Did Mr. Goodstein say anything to you about Mr. Argo being in his store before?

A. He said he saw him several times.

In addition, Goodstein said that there was a tenant in the building and that the doorway, through which the plaintiff entered, provided a common entrance to Nos. 6772, 6774 and 6776 Market Street.

The defendant presented no evidence, but Sidney Goodstein was called for cross-examination by the plaintiff. Under questioning by his own attorney he stated that:

The only business that was being done was the building of that construction site which had a number of contractors that were working in the place at that time trying to reach a completion of the building.

The defendants maintain that the plaintiff was bound by this answer, and others, of Goodstein, since Goodstein had been called as for cross-examination by the plaintiff. The rule the defendants invoke is a familiar one, but, of course, it is limited by the well-established principle that "the testimony adduced as on cross-examination may not only be contradicted by the direct testimony of other persons but may be impeached by its own inconsistencies or by such intrinsic improbability or obvious falsity as to stamp it unworthy of credit.

Bodmanoff v. Manis, 346 Pa. 243.

Goodstein's testimony abounded with contradictions and sagged with inverisimilitudes. The fact that he admitted to Mrs. Argo that the plaintiff fell in his store and assured her she had nothing to worry about, the fact that he said he had seen the plaintiff in his store several times and the fact that on occasion made a purchase from him, negatived the assumed incontrovertibility of his adverse statements when under cross-examination by plaintiffs counsel.

Thus, the question whether the plaintiff fell on the defendants' premises under circumstances that called for consideration as to liability on the part of the defendants, was strictly one for the jury to determine, and the defendants may not controvert the jury's findings in this respect, absent any charge of perversity, whimsicality, or prejudice.

The more important question in this case is the status of the plaintiff when he entered on the property of the defendants and what, if any, duty they owned [sic] him. Was he a trespasser, a licensee or a business visitor? A trespasser, as the term indicates, is one who enters upon the property of another without any right whatsoever. Generally speaking, the property owner owes him no duty except to refrain wilfully or wantonly from injuring him.

A licensee is one on the land of another because of the consent of the landowner as, for instance, one who uses land not his own as a shortcut. The possessor is under no liability to keep the premises in repair for the benefit of the licensee, but he has the duty to refrain from injuring him by failing to tell him of a latent defect on the property, as, for instance, a hidden well. He must also abstain from affirmative or active negligence. Thus, for example, if he is cutting down trees, he has the duty not to wield the ax or operate the machinery so recklessly or carelessly as to cause harm to the licensee.*

A business invitee is one who enters on the premises of another at the express or implied invitation of the latter for his benefit or for mutual advantage. An invitee differs from a licensee in that the licensee is on the premises by permission or sufferance only, and not by virtue of any business or contractual relation with the owner or occupant, inuring to the mutual benefit of both. The possessor of land owes a business invitee the duty to keep his premises in a reasonably safe and suitable condition for its contemplated uses, and he is under obligation to warn the invitee of hidden perils known to him or which were discoverable by him through reasonable inspection.

Briefly stated then a trespasser can legally require only that the landowner not wilfully or wantonly injure him; the licensee is entitled to be kept safe from active negligence and to be warned of latent defects, of which the owner had or should have had knowledge; the business visitor or invitee can demand that the possessor make the property safe for him.**

Under no reasonable interpretation of the evidence could James Argo be regarded as a trespasser. He had been on the property before, with the consent of the landowner; over a period of twelve years he had come upon the land some 40 times. It was not unnatural for him to believe he was welcome, certainly not unwelcome. The defendants argue that if Argo is to be classified as a licensee, they cannot be held responsible for his injuries because there was no latent defect to call to his attention. They ask if the unfinished floor comes under the classification of a defect, then "where is the evidence that the appellants failed to warn the appellee?" They follow this up with the statement: "Obviously a sign would have been of no value to this blind man." Pressing their argument they state that it would be "unreasonable, unrealistic and intolerable," to expect the defend- ants to "hire someone to stand at the door because this blind peddler might try to sell a broom on this construction site."

*Matthews v. Speigel, 385 Pa. 203.

**Maksimshuk v. Union Coal Co., 128 Pa. Superior Ct. 86;
Matthews v. Speigel, 385 Pa. 203;
Brewster v. Morrone, 395 Pa. 642.

It is a skillful maneuver in dialectics to posture an unreasonable requirement and then, by showing impossibility of meeting that requirement, argue that there is no requirement at all to fulfill. Obviously the law would not require the defendants to post a guard to chase blind people away. Obviously, also, the displaying of a sign would be of no use in warning sightless persons. But there was one certain way to save the plaintiff from harm. It was so simple a way that it seems almost bizarre to mention it. The defendants could have locked the door! Since there was no floor in the building, the door served no purpose in conducting guests and visitors to the interior of the building. What then was the necessity of leaving the door unfastened? If it was being used for the introduction of materials into the building it could have remained sealed until such time that it had to be opened to receive supplies. The defendants had a duty to keep the door locked not only to save blind persons from falling into the basement but to protect children from wandering into it to their resulting injury or possibly death. Even sighted persons could have been deceived by the finished door and assumed that the structure was occupied and certainly had a floor. That was the paradox about this building: the exterior was completed before the interior, but the public was not informed that the architectural glamor was only brick deep.

The defendants argue that they could not be required to use their property in any particular way just to save blind people from harm. They maintain that they have no obligation to shield those who cannot see where they are going. But people have the right to go where they please on the public throughfares. Freedom of mobility is as much a fundamental right of American citizenry as freedom of speech. Nor is this prereogative to move about restricted to the able-bodied. Even the ill and the infirm, to the extent that they can ambulate, may not be imprisoned in their homes. Moreover, in order to live, people have to work, and in proceeding to and from work, sidewalks are used. This building abutted directly on the sidewalk. Even a person in no way circumscribed by lack of vision, but momentarily disoriented, might not have hesitated to step into the door at 6774 Market Street to make inquiry about directions.

But, apart from all this, the defendants owed a duty to the blind. Sightless people are, tragically, not so few in number that they are to be regarded as oddities. In Pennsylvania alone there are some 15,000 blind persons. It is thus foreseeable that blind people may make their appearance anywhere that the public is entitled to go, and the law imposes on property owners the acknowledgment of that foreseeability. This may be a recent development in the law, but it is real nevertheless. It is moreover an inevitable evolution in the law in meeting the demands of justice, without which, of course, law is a mere puppet show, a snare and a delusion.

There was a time when the law offered no protection to the masses of people; only the lords of the manors, the counts and dukes had rights which the law deigned to uphold. In time the masses sloughed off their chains as serfs, but, the law continued to regard only the wealthy as worthy of receiving its mantle of protection. It was assumed that there would always be people who are poor and since they owned no property, which was the controlling badge of authority and privilege, the law was not interested in offering them safeguard, asylum or preservation from injury. Eventually this changed too, and the law gave status to the masses and the poor, but nothing could be done for the maimed, the crippled, the blind, the deaf and the epileptics. They were only half made up and it was even assumed that evil spirits abode within them -- thus, they were beyond the pale of the law and the courts.

However, step by step the law has progressed toward embracing the tenets of humanity, and so we find in the twentieth century that all people, regardless of color, religion, ethnic origin, financial or physical stature, have the right to stand equally with the mighty, the rich, the affluent, and the giants, at the bar of our courts. The law today recognizes, as it should, that if a crippled person cannot move across a street with the celerity and ease of an able-bodied pedestrian, it expects the motorist to moderate his speed and not that the disabled walker is to mount roller skates. Thus, it cannot be said today that the blind should receive less from the law because their plight requires from it more.

In England the courts recognize the grievous problems of the blind and expect the law to adjust to their inadequacy of detection of perilous circumstances. In the case of Haley and London Electricity Board, 1965 Law Reports, Appeal Cases 778, AC 778, 1965, the House of Lords held that it was the duty of those who engaged in operations on a highway to take reasonable care not to endanger other persons who might reasonably be expected to walk along the pavement, and that that duty was owed to blind persons if the operators foresaw or ought to have foreseen that blind persons might use the pavement. This duty was to be regarded in no way different from the duty owed to persons with sight, though the carrying out of the duty might involve extra precautions in the case of blind pedestrians.

In that case, the London Electricity Board dug a trench in a public street in London. It posted signs informing the public of the ditch and then put up close to the excavation what was called a "punner hammer," a wooden shaft reaching up some five feet. A blind man, unaware of the excavation, tripped over the punner hammer and fell, sustaining injuries to his head which left him deaf. The trial court denied him recovery in the suit brought against the London Electricity Board, stating that the blind man was guilty of contributory negligence in choosing to walk on the highway alone, thus assuming the risk of colliding with any obstruction therein. The House of Lords reversed:

The respondents concede that those who engage in operations on the highway owe a duty to take reasonable care not to act in a way likely to endanger other road users. At the same time they say that their duty is confined to a duty owing to normal persons. This contention is surely inconsistent with their concession, for other road users include all sorts of people who cannot be described as normal. In view of the large numbers of blind persons who fall into the category of abnormal and are users of the road it cannot be said that the risk of causing them injury is so small as to be minimal and therefore to be excluded from the realm of foreseeability.

In support of its decision, the House of Lords quoted from Lord Salvesen in the Scottish case of M'Kibbin v. Glasgow Corporation, 1920 S.C. 590, 598:

The streets of any city are open to be used by persons of more or less defective eyesight, hearing, and capacity, and I think, as a general proposition in law, that the magistrates must take note of that fact and if they are guilty of negligence, they cannot escape the consequences by saying that a more vigilant person than the one who was injured would in all probability have escaped injury.

They quoted also from Lord Sumner in the case of Glasgow Corporation v. Taylor, 1922 1 A.C. 44:

A measure of care appropriate to the inability or disability of those who are immature or feeble in mind or body is due from others, who know of or ought to anticipate the presence of such persons within the scope and hazard of their own operations.

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has recognized through legislation and, progressively, through court decision, that the law is not only for the healthy and the sound, the strong and the formidable. It is equally, and perhaps even more concerned, about the lame and the halt, the blind and the deaf, and those who, through the neglect and thoughtlessness of others, and through misfortune and chance, have been felled in the street, through no fault of their own. The law should be more solicitous about throwing a lifesaver to him who cannot swim than to a Channel champion, although the latter also, of course, is entitled to be rescued when fatigue and exhaustion overwhelm his capacities.

The blind should particularly be the wards of the law because Dante, in his peregrinations through Hell, found no torture inflicted by the field manager of that kingdom which could compare, in wretchedness and misery, the unhappiness pressing continuously on those persons whose lamp of guidance, and whose torch illuminating the great panorama of the Heaven of life, are extinguished forever.

In this second half of the twentieth century the law of Pennsylvania recognizes the plight of the blind and their inability to fend for themselves, with the aggressive vigilance of the sighted, and, as the law lays down certain limitations on the rule of contributory negligence, with regard to infants, it equally modifies the rigidity of that rule in its application to those who must travel in a continuing night that never knows the cheering and rosy light of dawn. In the case of David v. Feinstein, 370 Pa. 449, decided in 1952, the plaintiff, a blind man, fell into an open cellarway. When the door was open, an iron bar usually connected its two sections. At the time of the accident the connecting bar was not in place. One section of the door was standing erect. A sighted person could undoubtedly have seen this erect barrier and would thus have been warned of the danger of the open cellarway. The blind man did not see the barrier, although, walking with his cane, he tapped the ground ahead of him searching out obstacles in his course. The jury returned a verdict in his favor, and the property owner sought judgment n.o.v., arguing that the plaintiff was guilty of contributory negligence. Defendant's counsel contended that "Even as a man with sight cannot say he did not observe that which was open and obvious, neither can a blind man say that he made proper use of the cane and was unable to learn of the existence of the defect."

We held:

A blind person is not bound to discover everything [emphasis in the original Opinion] which a person of normal vision would. He is bound to use due care under the circumstances. Due care for a blind man includes a reasonable effort to compensate for his unfortunate affliction by the use of artificial aids for discerning obstacles in his path. When an effort in this direction is made, it will ordinarily be a jury question whether or not such effort was a reasonable [emphasis that of the court] one. The general rule applies that "Contributory negligence may be declared as a matter of law only when it is so clearly revealed that fair and reasonable persons cannot disagree as to its existence. . ."
[citing case]

It was not unreasonable for the jury to have concluded that plaintiff exercised due care for his safety when he used his cane in the manner which he described. The uncontroverted physical facts did not effectively disprove plaintiff's testimony.

Thus far, we have been considering James Argo, the plaintiff, as a licensee on the defendants' property and we conclude that as a licensee he was entitled to a care the defendants failed to provide. In that aspect of the case the jury's verdict is sustainable. A fortiori, the verdict should not be disturbed if they jury found that Argo was a business invitee, which they could well have done, under the evidence.

It is not to be assumed that the term "business invitee" applies only to those who go on another's property as a buying customer. It applies equally as well to those on the property, with the possessor's consent, to sell commodities, enuring to the expected benefit or profit of the land possessor. Every person who buys assumes that he is gaining an advantage excluding situations, of course, of a charitable aspect. Otherwise, he would not put out money. Thus, if Argo entered on to the defendants' property to sell his wares, and, because of past performances, the jury found that the defendants impliedly invited him to return, then he was entitled to a guardianship of due care from the defendants. In Hartman v. Miller, 143 Pa. Superior Ct. 143, the plaintiff was on the premises of the defendant expecting to sell him goods. A sash fell upon him and he was injured. Although, for reasons in no way affecting the principle involved in the case, the Superior Court decided the defendant was not liable, it said:

It is clear that plaintiff was a business visitor or invitee who was on the premises for a purpose connected with his own business and indirectly connected with the business of the defendant: Restatement, Torts, section 332. It follows that the defendant owed to the plaintiff the affirmative duty of keeping his premises reasonably safe for business visitors such as plaintiff and of giving warning of any failure to maintain them in that condition.

Thus, whether Argo is to be regarded as a licensee or a business invitee, the verdict returned in his favor may not be reversed on the basis of the defendants' duty of care. Nor may it be reversed on contributory negligence. The record would not justify any conclusion that Argo was guilty of contributory negligence as a matter of law, and it clearly supports the jury's conclusion that he was not contributorily negligent as a matter of fact.

The defendants argue for a new trial stating that there was no proof, of any agency relationship between Sidney Goodstein and the Good Company. As stated before, Goodstein was president of the Good Company and we have seen also how he admitted that Argo had been in his store. The jury conclude from this statement that he was speaking in his capacity as president of the Good Company. Whatever he knew in his individual capacity could not be separated from his knowledge as an officer of the corporation and what he knew as the Good Company's president could not be divorced from his awareness as contractor.

The defendants complain also that the Judge's charge was inadequate, We have read it and find it adequate..

Finally the defendants contend that the Judge had no authority to mold the verdicts, as already explained. There is abundant authority for what the Trial Judge [sic] in this respect: Shively v. McDonnell, 308 Pa. 298: McShea v. McKenna, 95 Pa. Superior Ct. 338.

Judgment affirmed.

Justices Cohen & Jones Dissent
Justices Eagen, O'Brien & Roberts concur in the result.

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A few days before White Cane Safety Day, October 15, 1966, a blind Federationist was killed by a car in Boise, Idaho, as he crossed the street in front of his home.

Although 88 years old, Mr. Durand still did some gardening and cared for his lawn. Early in the morning--a few minutes past six-he went out to turn on the irrigation water, a task which required his crossing the street. His wife, also in her eighties, went into the yard with him, keeping a flashlight beamed on him. He was wearing light trousers and carrying a white cane at the time the car struck him.

The speed limit was 30 m.p.h. The car's headlights were on -- and according to police, in good condition. There were no skid marks. . . before the point of impact. The driver said he did not see Mr. Durand until he had hit him.

A few minutes later it began to rain, then snow. But Mrs. Durand insists that it was not raining at the time of the accident, as the police report reads. But then, the police report does not mention that the victim was blind, either.

The Gem State Blind feel that their White Cane Safety Day-publicity was suppressed on the day Mr. Durand was buried -- October 15.

The Durand family employed a lawyer who, after a little research, reported that there is an Idaho law which states that if the driver does not see the object before impact, he cannot help hitting it and cannot be held responsible. The lawyer is proceeding with the case as he thinks there is a chance of proving the driver was exceeding the speed limit. Still, the overwhelming question is: if the driver did not see Mr. Durand, why didn't he?

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That Gysbertus Veldhuizen is a credit to his name and his fellow blind was evidenced by the ninety friends and co-workers who gathered at a testimonial dinner given in his honor by the Wisconsin Council of the Blind, November 19 in Milwaukee.

Born in the Netherlands, Bert Veldhuizen became blind shortly after coming to the United States. He has built up his own successful vending stand service in Watertown, Wisconsin, and devoted many not-so-spare hours to the work of the blind. Besides managing the endowment fund of the National Federation of the Blind, he chairs the statutory advisory committee to the Wisconsin Department of Public Welfare and is manager of the Wisconsin Council's endowment fund.

At the dinner Lester Loken, president of the Janesville school alumni, spoke of Bert's days there as a teacher 40 years ago. Herbert Pitz, president of the Wisconsin Council, testified to Bert's outstanding success with Council funds and announced the Council's decision to designate that portion of its endowment fund earmarked for business enterprises as the "Veldhuizen Business Loan Fund." Arthur Colby presented Bert with a plaque in recognition of his years of worthwhile contributions.

The high point came with Gysbertus' response. He was understandably moved by the experience. Soon, though, he took note of Lester Loken's entertaining anecdotes and finished with his typical, hilarious Dutch humor.

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by James R. Carlock

The 1966 annual convention of the Arizona Federation of the Blind was held November 18-20 at the Hiway House Motel in Phoenix. At the Executive Committee meeting, Friday evening, plans for fund raising were discussed and adopted. Gordon Purine announced that he will no longer be able to serve as treasurer of the Arizona Federation.

The general session featured informative and lively panel discussions on vocational rehabilitation, the sheltered workshop, vending stands and the State school for the blind. Officials of the Division of Rehabilitation of the Visually Impaired attended and participated in the panel discussions, as did Frank Kells , director of the Phoenix Center for the Blind.

An interesting talk was given by Paul Ash, director of the American Institute of Technology in Phoenix, regarding that school's well-conceived program for blind training in computer work. It appeared from Ash's speech, and from the subsequent questions and discussion, that blind trainees receive complete training with sighted trainees in various levels of computer work, not merely the basic and menial functions.

Mrs. Barbara Norton, president of the Welfare Rights Organization of Arizona, delivered a stimulating address on the need for improvements in our State's welfare programs and for changes in the structure and administration of the programs.

The activities and aims of the Governor's Study Committee for Full Rehabilitation of all the Handicapped by 1975 stimulated many questions, lively discussions and adoption of a resolution declaring the Arizona Federation's strong opposition to transfer of the functions of the Division of Rehabilitation of the Visually Impaired out of the Department of Public Welfare into a Department of Rehabilitation for all of the disabled. Proponents of such a scheme had cited California's incorporation of State services for the Blind into the Department of Rehabilitation as a fine example of success and improved services for the blind. Muzzy Marcelino, who attended this convention and participated in all panel discussions, described the deplorable state of affairs in California's program under the State Department of Rehabilitation. He told of the grievances and plight of the sheltered shop workers, the Department's opposition to a Minimum Wage bill, of the practice of bringing rehabilitation trainees into the shops and the consequences to the shop workers, of the efforts to increase the set-aside vending stand fee, and of the miserable performance in genuine vocational rehabilitation. He also touched upon the efforts of the Nevada blind to remove rehabilitation of the general rehabilitation agency into the Department of Public Welfare. This was accomplished over the bitter opposition of some Federal officials. Muzzy, as representative of the National Federation of the Blind, told us of the efforts that the California affiliate will make to bring about transfer of the non-vocational rehabilitation activities for the blind out of the Department of Rehabilitation and to confine the work of that Department to strictly vocational rehabilitation.

In addition to the resolution regarding rehabilitation of the blind, the convention adopted resolutions asking for enactment of the Model White Cane Law; a $15 per month increase in the Aid to the Blind grant; a property tax exemption on the first $2,000 of assessed valuation of property owned by a blind person; the right of blind persons to vote by absentee ballot for any reason and the right of blind persons to take any persons of their choice into the voting booth to mark their ballots; and regulations by the Secretary of Labor to compel all sheltered workshops throughout the nation to pay the basic Federal Minimum Wage to sheltered shop workers. Arizona's sheltered shop for the Blind already complies with that resolution's objectives.

James Carlock was re-elected president of the Arizona Federation and was chosen to be the Federation's delegate at the NFB 1967 convention in Los Angeles. Julia Zozaya will be the first vice president; Joe Hurley, second vice president; Catherine Hurley, secretary; and Ray Miranda, treasurer.

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For reasons which do not on the whole seem extraordinary to the blind, but which the general public seems to eat up like soggy, sugar-coated cereal, newspapers play up stories of a guide dog saving his blind master from sudden disaster or returning to his master after having been lost 3,000 miles from home on a stormy, snow-swept night.

Just how much human character an individual can read into a dog is, however, a controversial subject whose answer lies in personal opinion. Two sides of this question were aired recently in a nationally syndicated column usually reserved for love-sick teenagers and distraught housewives, Ann Landers:

Dear Ann Landers: Why did you ridicule the woman who wanted to have a church funeral service for her horse? I would like to tell you about an incident that occurred a few years ago and it may change your mind. A blind woman who lived in Oak Park, Illinois, had a wonderful seeing eye dog that served her faithfully for many years. This woman and her dog were a familiar sight around Oak Park. Everyone knew them.

After many years of unfailing service the dog died. The woman's minister, Dr. Carl Winter, conducted a service for the dog. Everyone thought it was beautiful. Please change your advice -- Mrs. J. M.

Dear Mrs. J. M.: I checked with Mr. Winter and learned he did not bury the dog from the church. He said a few words at the grave in the pet cemetery. What's more, everyone did not think it was beautiful. Dr. Winter came in for a good bit of criticism, mostly from fellow clergymen.

Dr. Winter said the dog was a substitute for the woman's eyes -- and that the services were for the eyes, not the dog. He still feels it was a humanitarian thing to do -- and he would do it again, knowing some people would criticize him.

Anyone else wishing to voice his opinion should not write to the MONITOR. According to publishing ethics, the next scoop belongs to "Dear Abby."

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The first meeting of the National Accreditation Council for Agencies Serving the Blind and Visually Handicapped was held at Hotel Gramercy Park in New York City on November 16-17, 1966. This 32-man Council (appointed by COMSTAC and successor to it) met to lay the groundwork for establishing policies and procedures for accrediting agencies and organizations in the field of work with the blind. Federationists will remember the announcement at the Louisville Convention that NFB First Vice President Kenneth Jernigan was asked in June 1966 to serve on the Council.

The meeting got under way on the evening of November 16 with a banquet and reception at the hotel. In a series of speeches and a citation given to Jansen Noyes, president of the American Foundation for the Blind, recognition was given to the fact that the Foundation had originated, sponsored, promoted and nurtured COMSTAC and its work. Appreciation was expressed that the Foundation had loaned professional and secretarial staff to COMSTAC, helped it establish its bank account, helped secure legal service to draw the Charter of Incorporation for the National Accreditation Council, assisted in locating office space for the Council and provided major financial support throughout the entire COMSTAC operation. Noyes responded by stressing how independent of the Foundation, COMSTAC had been from the very beginning.

The following morning the business session of the Council convened. Meetings were held at the American Foundation for the Blind. The Council divided itself into four Ad Hoc Committees -- Personnel, By-Laws, Nominations and Finance. In the afternoon the Council assembled to hear the report of the Committees and to elect permanent officers. It was decided that the Council would have for calendar 1967 a budget of $160,000, half of which would be supplied by the American Foundation for the Blind and the other half by the Federal Vocational Rehabilitation Administration. There was considerable discussion as to whether the Council in its personnel practices would unequivocally bind itself to abide by the COMSTAC standards. Feeling was expressed that considerable embarrassment and weakening of the Council's moral position would result if such were not the case. It was unanimously voted that the COMSTAC standards would be followed by the Council.

Arthur Brandon, the temporary chairman, was elected permanent president and Alexander Handel, formerly of the American Foundation for the Blind, was selected as permanent Executive Director at a salary of $22,000 a year.

It was decided that the present Council would meet again in the spring of 1967 and that its members would continue in office until the spring of 1968. In the meantime applications will be taken from those agencies wishing to seek accreditation. Each accredited agency will have two votes in the 1968 meeting and in subsequent meetings. Individual members of the Council will have one vote.

It was announced that the COMSTAC report will soon be available in Braille and that recruitment is going forward to try to find two other professional staff members to work with Handel. A list of the current members of the Accreditation Council follows:

Arthur L. Brandon
Consultant in Administration of Higher Education
Lewisburg, Pa.

M. Robert Barnett
Executive Director American Foundation for the Blind
New York City

Benjamin F. Boyer
Professor, School of Law Temple University
Philadelphia, Pa.

Robert S. Bray
Chief Division for the Blind Library of Congress
Washington, D. C.

Kenneth W. Bryan
Asst. General Manager San Francisco Dept. of Social Services
San Francisco, Calif.

Thomas E. Caulfield, M.D.
Administrator St. Paul's Rehabilitation Center
Boston, Mass.

J. Kenneth Cozier
President, Cozier Container Corporation
Cleveland, Ohio

John W. Ferree, M.D.
Executive Director National Society for the Prevention of Blindness
New York City

Melvin A. Glasser
Director, Social Security Department United Auto Workers of America
Detroit, Mich.

James G. Haughton, M.D.
Acting Commissioner Department of Hospitals
New York City

Horace A. Hildreth
President, Hildreth Radio and TV Network
Portland, Me.

Richard E. Hoover, M.D.
Baltimore , Md.

Kenneth Jernigan
Director, State of Iowa Commission for the Blind
Des Moines, Iowa

Norman V. Lourie
Executive Deputy Secretary Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare
Harrisburg, Pa.

John R. May
Executive Director San Francisco Foundation
San Francisco, Calif.

Miss M. Anne McGuire
Consultant, Social Administration
Waynesville, N. C.

Murray Meld
West Coast Representative Greenleigh Associates
San Francisco, Calif.

Robert Morris
Professor, Social Planning Brandeis University
Waltham, Mass.

William H. Nichols
Vice President Nationwide Insurance Company
Columbus, Ohio

Ewald Nyquist
Deputy Commissioner State Department of Education
Albany, New York

Homer P. Rainey
Professor of Higher Education University of Colorado
Boulder, Colo.

Mrs. Frederick Romberg
Vice President Dallas Services for Blind Children
Dallas, Texas

Peter J. Salmon
Administrative Vice President Industrial Home for the Blind
Brooklyn, N. Y.

Geraldine T. Scholl (Miss)
Professor, School of Education University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, Mich.

Ira A. Schur
Managing Partner S. D. Leidesdorf & Co.
New York, N. Y.

Frederick G. Storey
President Storey Theatres, Inc.
Atlanta, Ga.

Henry A. Talbert
Director Western Regional Office National Urban League
Los Angeles, Calif.

Warren Thompson
Director Department of Rehabilitation California Health & Welfare Agency
Sacramento, Calif.

Louis H. Rives, Jr.
Special Assistant to the Commissioner Vocational Rehabilitation Administration Department of Health, Education and Welfare
Washington, D. C.

McAllister Upshaw
Executive Director Metropolitan Society for the Blind
Detroit, Mich.

J. M. Woolly
Superintendent Arkansas School for the Blind
Little Rock, Arkansas

Norman M. Yoder
Commissioner Office for the Blind Pennsylvania Public Welfare Department
Harrisburg, Pa.

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COMSTAC is not content with its "misdirected, misconceived and miserable" drama in which it stars as the center of knowledge of blindness -- although it has never consulted the blind whom it seeks to cast as stand-ins and stunt men. In its most recent scene, COMSTAC has added to its cloaked, many-sided portrayal the role of public communicator number one.

The setting for this scene is Seattle, Washington, where COMSTAC uses the stage name, "Community Services for the Blind." The act began last March: Charles E. Brown, executive director of the Seattle CSB, (entered stage extreme right) wrote to Tom Gronning , president of the White Cane Association of King County -- the local NFB chapter, imposing supervision on the chapter's political and financial activities as conditions for continued use of meeting facilities newly under CSB's control. The White Cane Association rejected the demands as "paternalism of the most exaggerated and obnoxious kind."

Although it was definitely not included in the original COMSTAC script, the NFB stepped on stage immediately to try to undo any harm already done and to prevent any further misleading COMSTAC action.

At the Louisville convention, NFB members unanimously passed a resolution condemning COMSTAC's dictatorial upstaging at the expense of the blind themselves. In his banquet speech President tenBroek [see August MONITOR] uncloaked COMSTAC's real purpose: "to create a profession out of irrelevant and immaterial qualifications, and to devise programs for human beings out of the whole cloth of myths and stereotypes. . . ."

In the following scene, at the Washington State Association of the Blind, a unanimous resolution was passed in support of the White Cane Association's struggle, describing CSB as "flagrantly attempting to silence the voice of the blind and their activities in the area."

But CSB has menacingly entered the stage once more, this time with an article in its Bulletin which announces its plan

to educate the community about the various aspects of blindness and specifically about guide dogs and health regulations. . .CSB will continue its efforts to enlighten the community. . .about problems of blindness.

How can CSB communicate the "problems of blindness" when CSB does not even communicate with the blind themselves?

The Seattle area blind fear that any script written by CSB can only turn the "uninformed" in the audience into the "misinformed."

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By A. N. Venkatasubramanian
Convener, Indian Federation of the Blind

"Go to the Employment Exchange where they have jobs for the blind," thundered the Madras University in response to my repeated petitions for my reinstatement as a lecturer in history at the V.O.C. College from where I was kicked out in 1956 on the onslaught of blindness at the age of 34.

"On account of weak vision he has to leave college," was the decree of the principal. On inquiry the Employment Exchange was dead silent.

I petitioned to the Chancellor who is also our governor. The university expressed regret that the V.O.C. College has expressed their inability to consider my case. I petitioned to the governor for work in any other college. In fierce fury the university wrote to me that "your case cannot be considered in any affiliated college." Was I to sit and chant?

I represented the entire case to the President of India. "Show the utmost sympathy and let me know what action you are taking," wrote the President to the university in my support. For a year, no reply.

I again reminded the President and again the President warned the university. No reply for six months.

I loaded myself with all nuclear arguments and submitted to the President that he "need not beg any favour from anybody on my behalf, for he is in no way different from the Sovereign of England." I suggested that the time had come for legislation to ban discrimination on the ground of blindness in the universities as in California and Massachusetts.

What occurred between the President and the university, I do not know. But I have just received a message through the Government of India that the Madras University has conceded the right of qualified blind teachers to work in all its colleges.

The university has presented me a full list of its affiliated colleges for direct negotiation--a great victory in principle, although it may be long to establish it in practice. All the universities have conceded this right, without pressure, in principle. May this battle for dignity and self-respect instill courage and confidence in all my fellow blind men, all over the world.

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(From The New York Times News Service)

The New York Times has announced that it will print a special weekly edition in large type for readers whose vision is impaired. The first issue will be published March 6, 1967.

The New York Times Large Type Weekly will be a 24-page tabloid-size newspaper. It will contain specially edited material from the regular editions of the Times. About half the material will come from the news of the week in review section of the Sunday edition of the Times.

The size of body type in the new weekly will be the equivalent of 18 points -- two and a quarter times the size used at present in regular editions of the Times.

The large-type weekly will be printed early Monday morning and dated Monday. It will go into the postoffice early Monday morning for delivery through the mails.

It will be sold by subscription only. A year's subscription will cost $29 for 52 issues. For orders of 10 subscriptions or more going to one address there will be a 25 per cent discount.

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By Ray Morgan

(From the Kansas City Times)

The future of two Kansas specialized education schools -- the State School for the Deaf at Olathe and the School for the Blind in Kansas City, Kansas -- is scheduled to undergo a change as a result of the constitutional education amendment adopted in elections November 8.

Kansas school officials made it clear that the two schools, long an integral part of the state educational system with economic implications for both Olathe and Kansas City, will continue to have important roles but on a somewhat different basis under present plans.

A citizens advisory committee on education, headed by John Colburn, Wichita publisher, has recommended in implementing legislation to carry out the objectives of the educational amendment, that the two schools be transferred from the board of regents to the new state board of education.

In making the recommendation, the advisory committee declared:

"Both of these residential schools are conducted at the elementary-secondary level and are not considered a part of higher education.

"The course of study is closely related to special education courses in the public schools and the two state schools should become a part of a division of special educational services."

The change-over of the schools from the board of regents, which has had control of them since they were established, to the new ten-member state board of education will be discussed when the Legislature convenes in its 1967 session this month. The final decision will be made by the House and Senate education committees.

In making its recommendation for the transfer, the citizens advisory committee in its report recommended that the salary scales of the teachers at the institutions be kept the same.

"When the transfer is made, the teachers should be continued in the unclassified service with their salary being set by the state board of education," the committee report said. "This action would continue present policy in that they are in the unclassified service and the board of regents sets their salaries.

"If the teachers were placed in the classified service along with other employees of the department of public instruction and no changes were made in the recent civil service salaries, a number of them would receive a lower salary. This would be true particularly for those teachers who do not have a special education certificate."

The report added: "Since there is a shortage of specially trained teachers for both the sight and hearing handicapped, it is important that no momentum be lost in the present program at both institutions as a result of the reorganization recommended by the committee."

Colburn and the committee pointed out that in general the policy of the state has been to encourage development of special instruction for handicapped persons in the local school districts so that the children can maintain as many family and community ties as possible.

"In many cases, however, a specialized type of boarding school is required for all or a part of a child's education.

"This inter-relationship of institutional and local school services was recognized specifically by the 1965 Legislature when it provided for a special diagnostic team to evaluate all children with visual and hearing handicaps."

The committee said the Kansas Legislative council in a 1964 report had explained that "this diagnostic and evaluation program will help both parents and local schools to arrange the best educational program for a child and will facilitate the movement back and forth of children from a local to an institutional setting as the circumstances dictate.

"For these reasons, the committee believes strongly that coordination of the educational programs of the two state schools with those of the public schools can be achieved most easily under supervision of a single state agency," the committee said. "The board of regents informed the committee that it is willing to continue to administer the schools but will not object to their transfer to the state board of education."

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To complete the groundwork for an effective state-wide organization of welfare groups, the California Welfare Rights Organization held its third convention, December 3-4, at the Mexican Baptist Church in Del Rey.

The work was begun at its first meeting last February in Oakland where committees were formed to draft a constitution and plan the organization's framework. In June a second convention was held in Fontana, a small poverty-striken community in San Bernardino County. There the constitution was adopted, the organization's first resolution -- condemning night raids on welfare recipients' homes -- issued, and National Federation of the Blind President Jacobus tenBroek appointed to convene the next convention where its legislative plan-of-action was to be considered.

Among the officers elected at the Del Rey convention was Ysidro (Sid) Urena to the executive committee. Others representing the organized blind at the convention were Mr. and Mrs. Allen Jenkins, Muzzy Marcelino, Dominic Sposetto, Al Gil, Jerry Drake and Dr. and Mrs. Jacobus tenBroek.

A five-pronged legislative program will be sought: (1) state administration of welfare; (2) a guaranteed annual income, or at least a floor below which the assistance system shall not permit needy persons to sink; (3) revision of the bloated role of law enforcement in welfare -- especially the elimination of night raids and the clarification of the rights of women recipients to maintain normal relationships with men; (4) to increase useful services for current aid recipients -- including the upgrading of education and training; and (5) that the law recognize the fundamental democratic rights of recipients to organize for self- help and to protest legislative and administrative injustice.

It was announced at the convention that the National Association of Social Workers has donated $4,000 to help with this legislative program.

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By Robert H. Clark

[From the Kansas City Star]

The handsome Chambers piano, pride of the music department of Washburn University in Topeka, was not considered worth the effort to salvage, even for kindling, after its battering in last June's tornado.

But today the rich, rosewood 7-foot Steinway grand is ready for the concert stage, with its beautiful case restored and its tone qualities declared superior to any instrument in this area.

The piano was saved from burning in a pile of storm debris by the determination and uncanny skill of M. A. (Augie) McCollom, a blind man.

McCollom, whose full-time employment is as placement consultant for the Kansas division of services to the blind, has worked tirelessly since the tornado to restore the Chambers grand and eight other pianos at Washburn to original musical capacities.

Everett Fetter, music department director, recalled the days after the tornado when his entire department was wiped out by the storm and hopes for classes this fall were exceedingly dim because of the loss of thousands of dollars worth of instruments.

The 69-year-old Chambers Steinway was given to the university as a memorial to the late Thomas Massic Chambers, a onetime Washburn student, who was a concert pianist in Hollywood for many years. Because of its quality, the piano occupied the concert spot on the stage of the university's music hall. The building was demolished by the tornado. During the storm, the second floor of the building gave way, dumping tons of stone through Fetter's office on the first floor, and into the basement. It was covered with some 20 feet of dirt, mud and stone and lay hopelessly buried for six weeks while university authorities and insurance adjusters worked to reach agreement on the 8-million-dollar loss to Washburn.

It was finally agreed that if any items were found that could be salvaged, the school could attempt rebuilding them under contract. Cranes then started ripping into the debris and high-loaders literally shoveled the mass into dump trucks -- the fallen stone walls, lumber, pianos and all. With no care for their handling, piano parts were tossed off at a warehouse to see if anything could be saved. That was where McCollom stepped in.

With the help of some master wood workers, McCollom bid on the job of rehabilitating the Washburn pianos and won the contract. For around $8,000 he is returning to Washburn eight pianos worth three or four times that much. Every instrument has been completely rebuilt by McCollom and is considered better than new.

The 53-year-old McCollom came by his talents from long experience. When he was 12 years old at Dodge City, Kansas, he was struck by a car while coasting on Boot Hill and was seriously injured. He was taken to Kansas City for treatment, but his left eye had to be removed. His right eye "died" later when a detached retina could not be secured.

While in the hospital he won a crystal set radio as a contest prize. Although his eyes were heavily bandaged, he borrowed a small sewing machine screwdriver from a nurse and took the radio apart just to see how it worked. Although he never recovered his sight, he made and sold a large number of crystal sets later.

McCollom's interest in radio caused him to get into the business for a living. He received his ham license in 1925 and a commercial license in 1929. He started station KGNO at Dodge City in 1930 and the station since has gone into television as a major Western Kansas outlet.

McCollom recalled that he hung onto the station until the depression took its toll and he had to sell at a loss.

The determined youth then entered Southwestern College at Winfield and later graduated from the University of Kansas.

"I went to college with only my kit of piano tuning instruments and when I was graduated I only owed $50 for my education, loss on the radio station and all," McCollom said.

McCollom has trained and placed more than 500 blind persons in competitive employment in his job with the state, with his people now in virtually every line of work.

Although work with pianos fills every spare moment from his state job, McCollom still refers to his skill as "moonlighting." He is a member of the Piano Technicians guild and is widely known in the profession. He also is active in ham radio work and during the Topeka storm disaster he was at the radio for three days straight without rest relaying messages from over the country to and from storm victims.

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[From APWA Letter to Members, November 1966]

Public Welfare is on the move. But the question is -- toward what?

Is it toward a revitalized role using creative applications of new and old knowledge and methods? Is it toward more concerted action with other community services to produce better opportunities for a constructive future for its clients? Or, will it be superseded because it is seen as one of the forces that tends to preserve inequity, disadvantage and injustice? If the direction is to be the former, what are the major potentially productive responses to the current ferment and to the diverse, often conflicting, pressures generated by the anti-poverty programs which are being found within the system? How can their use be cultivated and stimulated?

The Office of Economic Opportunity wants to know the answers, and, believing that the current welfare recipients constitute a key segment of the total problem of poverty, it has contracted the American Public Welfare Association to find out through a Technical Assistance Project.

A major objective of the project will be to assist in strengthening relationships between Public Welfare Departments and local Community Action Agencies. But, the first phase in the three-year project will be substantially explorative.

Six problem spots are tentatively identified for priority attention: (1) development of structured services; (2) methods of administrative and staff relationships and communication with recipients and with the organized poor; (3) various aspects of policy and practice in administration of financial aid, affecting equity and incentive; (4) opportunities for employment and achievement of the poor in the public welfare establishment; (5) policy and planning role of the poor and community action groups in the public welfare field; and (6) the welfare capability and role in developing better housing -- particularly using recent housing and legislation.

The APWA, whose address is 1313 E. 60th Street, Chicago 60637, is openly soliciting ideas and suggestions to make the project worth the taxpayers' money and its energy.

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[From the Associated Press]

Step into a dusty little shop in any Indian town and you can quickly get a cheap pair of spectacles -- and perhaps a blinding case of trachoma or glaucoma.

Government statistics reveal that of India's 500 million people, 4.3 million are blind -- an estimated quarter of the world's blind. Eye specialists claim thousands of unsanitary, unlicensed "optic houses" are partly to blame.

The trachoma control unit of India's health ministry says trachoma, a highly contagious form of conjunctivitis, and glaucoma may be passed on by shopkeepers selling eyeglasses.

The root of the problem is that India does not have nearly enough qualified opticians.

In Calcutta, with a population of about 6.5 million, there are about 50 opticians with proper training. In rural areas, where 75 per cent of the population lives, the ratio is worse.

Millions of Indians who feel their eyesight failing are forced into the dusty little shops where "scientific examinations" entail fitting one pair of spectacles after another until objects across the road become "clearer."

Unfortunately, most of the "technicians" who grind the lenses have had no formal training. They simply practice a trade passed down from their fathers, using equipment outdated long ago.

Many spectacles salesmen set up shop on sidewalks near bazaars, railway stations or any spot that will draw a crowd. All this has placed an impossible burden on qualified opticians. They have thousands of requests for help, so most take orders only from eye specialists -- whose fees are too high for the ordinary Indian.

India's central government has asked all states to legislate eye quacks out of business and is studying the possibility of national legislation to help fight eye diseases.

But until enough qualified opticians are available, the sidewalk salesmen will continue to do a booming business.

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By Isabelle L. D. Grant

California State College at Hayward was the location of the seventh annual conference of blind teachers on December 3. Sixty-one participants and observers were in attendance. This number included among others, teachers at school and college levels, administrators, college representatives, teachers in training and rehabilitation personnel.

In the absence of Arturo Baca, teacher, Terra Linda High School, San Rafael, because of illness, Mrs. Onvia Tillinghast, teacher, San Lorenzo City School, San Lorenzo, assumed the duties of chairman. Mrs. Tillinghast introduced Dr. Harcelroad, president, California State College at Hayward who welcomed the group with a brief history of the college and its progress.

Miss Lynda Bardis and Gerald Neufeld, both teaching assistants in the French Department of the University of California at Berkeley, discussed their respective positions, the preparation, training, residence abroad, their application for the positions and their class procedures. With the recent audio-lingual approach to the learning of modern foreign languages, it was pointed out that blind persons, with the necessary background and qualifications, find this work unusually interesting and challenging.

A panel on "Professionalism and the Blind Teacher" was moderated by Dr. Isabelle L.D. Grant, retired teacher, Los Angeles City Schools, Los Angeles. Three facets were discussed: 1. Standardization and Accreditation, with an unusually fine presentation on the topic by Dr. Lewie Burnett, chief, Department of Education, California State College at Hayward; 2. Employment, with two participants in the discussion -- Dr. Eugene Clark, who stressed qualifications and personal data regarding applicants for teaching positions, and Ralph Cheelka, principal, Starr King School for Exceptional Children, Carmichael, who reported on an interesting survey of faculty members' opinions regarding the blind teacher in the classroom; 3. Tom Joe, legislative consultant, Committee on Social Welfare, Sacramento, pointed up the necessity for the support of professional organizations over the nation in the recognition of the blind teacher.

The American Federation of Teachers was represented by Mrs. Marjorie Stern, member of the Federation executive board, who spoke on "Professionalism and the Federation," with reference to the teacher who is blind. Roy Archibald, West Coast representative of the National Education Association discussed the possibilities for assistance through the N.E. A., drawing attention to the fact that in spite of the existence of a California State law credentialling blind teachers, some school boards throughout the state still require a specific visual acuity for employment.

The afternoon was devoted to a demonstration and discussion of an "Electronic Reading Device for the Blind" by Dr. John G. Linvil, head of the electrical engineering department at Stanford University, Palo Alto. Dr. Linvil was assisted by his daughter Candy, who has been testing out the reading facilities of the apparatus, in the process of its development.

A detailed summary of the conference will be available in the near future and will be announced.

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By Ramona Willoughby

Editor's note: Ramona Willoughby, 22, is a graduate of the Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School and the Iowa State Commission for the Blind Orientation and Rehabilitation Center. She is currently a senior at Georgetown University in Washington, D. C., majoring in Russian. Ramona is an active participant in the Federation's affiliate chapter in Washington and in dramatics, language clubs, church work, tutoring and other campus and community activities. She is a member of the National Federation of the Blind Student Division.

Georgetown recommends that its language majors spend a year of study in the country of their primary interest. This student exchange program, however, is most frequently conducted with European countries, because an agreement has not been signed between the United States and the Soviet Union providing for such study on the undergraduate level. However, each year increasing opportunities are made available to American students who wish to study and/or travel in Russia during the summer. This is the kind of tour in which I participated last summer. The itinerary which I chose to follow was planned by a Georgetown professor who also led the tour group which I joined. Although he assured me that he would be glad to have me in his group, he freely admitted that he would not be likely to accept a blind person with whom he was not somewhat acquainted.

The tour group consisted of 30 students from a dozen states and as many universities, all of whom were proficient speakers of Russian. We flew from New York June 22, following this itinerary: two days in London; five days sailing on the Soviet Ship Nadyezhda Krupskaya from London to Leningrad, stopping along the way in Copenhagen, Stockholm and Helsinki; one week in Moscow; two days in Riga; three weeks of study in Leningrad; and a few days each in Volgograd, (formerly Stalingrad) Rastov on the Don, Kiev and Odessa. From Odessa, we sailed to Athens, stopping enroute in Constanza, Rumania and Istanbul. The following three weeks and the return route to London were left to the discretion of each person in the group. Although this time was far from anticlimatic for me, my principal interest was in Russia. I learned a great deal about the Russian language, as well as the people, system of government, customs and culture.

Among other things, I made it my business to learn about services, opportunities and living conditions of the blind in the Soviet Union. I visited libraries for the blind in both Moscow and Leningrad where I was able to borrow books for use in the country, and I arranged to have others sent to me after my return to Washington. In Moscow I also found a braille map of the subway system. This was extremely useful because the subway is the chief means of city travel. I met two blind students from Moscow University who were, like most of my casual acquaintances, friendly and interested in America. We spent some time comparing university life and employment opportunities in the two nations.

I learned a great deal about training for the blind, job availability and social conditions when I visited the Society for the Blind and talked with the director of the Leningrad branch of that agency. Children are sent to the school for the blind and are divided at the usual ages according to their abilities and interests. Emphasis is placed on academic training with some instruction given in industrial and agricultural areas. Although certain factories are specially adapted for blind workers and are required to hire a given percentage of blind employees, the blind themselves are not obliged to work in these factories. They may experience difficulty in obtaining work elsewhere, however. I did meet a blind professor, though, and was told of a blind chemist.

Some apartment buildings are specially designed for families having one or more blind members, although the available space is not sufficient for everyone. An effort is made to provide interested blind persons with entertainment and transportation after working hours. This gives the impression of much segregation of the Russian blind. However, I believe that in this respect consideration must be given to the position of the trade unions in the Soviet Union. The workers of every factory belong to a trade union, their main goal being the fringe benefits which membership in the union affords them, such as access to resort areas during the summer. It is also the membership of the parents in a given trade union that determines which camp his child may attend in the summer, as well as which four-year nursery school he may attend.

I honestly believe that I encountered no more problems as a blind person in Russia than any blind person encounters here in the United States. I had to find readers, but that was not unique to the Soviet Union. I got lost occasionally, but so did everyone else in the tour group. The attention I attracted on the streets can also be compared to the streets of any American city: sometimes people were helpful, sometimes they were a bother, and sometimes they were just curious.

Buses are widely used as public conveyances, as taxis are expensive, and private automobiles are rare. Because of this many children travel with their parents and, even though crowded conditions may make it necessary for the parents to stand, they can expect a seated passenger to hold the children. More than once I had a baby placed in my lap without a word of explanation. I certainly didn't mind, though, because it gave me an opportunity to visit with both the child and the parents.

Many places we visited and activities in which we participated were especially meaningful because of previous courses in Russian literature and history. Many facts were brought into a new perspective. Never once in all of Europe was I refused admittance because of my blindness. The spirit of federationism is, indeed, spreading throughout the world.

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The Connecticut Federation of the Blind met in Hartford, the weekend of November 26-27, for its annual convention.

More than 40 members attended from the local National Federation of the Blind chapters in New Haven, Bridgeport and Hartford.

Main speaker was Franklin Van Vliet , who travelled from New Hampshire to Connecticut to represent the National Federation of the Blind at the convention. Long-time leader and currently serving his third term as treasurer of the NFB, Van Vliet is the past president of the New Hampshire Federation of the Blind.

The convention delegates voted to update their state federation's constitution by putting it through an extensive revision.

Under its new president, Paul Cutler, the Connecticut Federation will push for state legislation which includes: (1) a bill to abolish relatives' responsibility in public welfare and (2) a bill which will allow a property exemption for blind taxpayers. Van Vliet told the convention that the NFB stands ready and able to assist them in working toward the passage of this and similar legislation.

A date is being set in the near future for Van Vliet to meet with the state officers to reconstruct their constitution and develop a plan to institute more local NFB chapters within Connecticut.

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A postal regulation issued pursuant to the Randolph -Sheppard Act (20 U. S. C. A. § 107) sets a limit upon the income which a licensed blind operator of a vending stand may receive and still be eligible for the assignment of profits from competing vending machines. In this article, it will be shown that this regulation, found in section 614.71 of the Postal Manual and 39 C. F. R. 98. 7(a) , is invalid because the establishment of an income ceiling does not lie within the area of discretion entrusted by the statute to the Post Office Department.

The regulation states as a condition for the assignment of income that the blind operator is not receiving an adequate income and it defines an adequate income as "the equivalent of the average income of the average employee at the installation." This limiting standard is invalid because it is neither explicitly nor implicitly authorized by the Act itself, it runs counter to the purpose of the Act, and it does not result from relevant expertise of the Post Office Department.

The Randolph-Sheppard Act provides that "[i]n authorizing the operation of vending stands on Federal property, preference shall be given, so far as feasible, to [ licensed] blind persons," and it charges the heads of affected departments to "prescribe regulations designed to assure such preference (including assignment of vending machine income to achieve and protect such preference). . . "Section 614.63 of the Postal Manual permits postal employees' groups to install vending machines of a restricted type in certain limited areas. Section 614.71 (39 C.F.R.§98.7(a)) provides that the profits from these employee-operated machines may be assigned to the blind vending-stand operator if certain conditions are met. These are that "the machines are being operated. . . in proximity to a stand or machines operated by a blind person and are in competition therewith, and [that] a blind operator is not receiving an adequate income." The requirements of competition and proximity are clearly justified by the Act, which provides for the assignment of income only as a means of eliminating the competitive effects of vending machines. However, an examination of the wording, purpose and history of the Act reveals that the income ceiling established by the regulation is not within the statutory authority and is therefore invalid .

Nowhere in the Act is direct or indirect reference made to a ceiling or standard for the income of blind vending- stand operators. The statute gives the blind a preference, and to the extent that vending machines operated by others defeat this preference, the income from such machines is to be assigned to the blind person operating the stand. Not only does the Act itself not refer to a ceiling on income, but the statement in the House Report accompanying the bill that "[t]he income from vending machines within reasonable proximity to, and in direct competition with, the vending stand should be assigned to the blind operator" (p. 15) seems quite clearly to mean all the income from such machines, not a part thereof, which is neither specified nor to be ascertained by any given standard.

Turning to statutory purpose, which one commentator calls "the one most significant criterion," [Jaffe, "Judicial Review - Question of Law," 69 Harvard Law Review 239, 1955; p. 261] the income ceiling set in the postal regulations cannot be said to be related to the broad goal of aiding the blind economically. It might be claimed that once a blind stand operator is making as much as the average postal employee, he is no longer in need of the aid provided by the Act. But this argument must fail, because the purpose of the Act is in part "enlarging the economic opportunities of the blind, and stimulating the blind to greater efforts to make themselves self-supporting." To these purposes, the postal ceiling is completely irrelevant. The general purpose of the Act is aid to blind persons, not economic aid to put blind persons on a parity with the average postal employee.

The conclusion that the income ceiling is invalid is further buttressed by the fact that it rests on a factor not entrusted to the discretion of the Post Office Department -- namely, the relative interests of postal employees and blind persons. First of all, the statute states that in prescribing regulations, department heads are to take into account the convenience of their departments and the interests of the United States. There is no provision for the interests of departmental employees, and Senator Purtell's statement on the Senate floor (100 Cong. Rec. 10831) that a preference is to be given the blind "regardless of the feelings of employees" in affected facilities makes this even clearer. The department heads are given discretion only insofar as their departments as such or the interests of the United States are concerned. The balance between the interests of the blind and of departmental employees was struck by Congress in the Act itself. Further, the purpose of the Act is essentially one of welfare and rehabilitation, and the Post Office Department clearly has no expertise on which to draw to implement this purpose. The Department's expertise is limited to postal matters, and it is there that the discretion entrusted to it by the Act comes to an end.

The conclusion based on the above factors that the postal income ceiling is invalid is borne out by a comparison of the postal regulation with comparable regulations issued by other executive agencies Of the seven other agencies having comparable regulations in the Code of Federal Regulations, six provide for the assignment to blind vending stand operators of all the income from competing vending machines and place no ceiling on the income of the blind operator. The seventh, issued by the General Services Administration, provides in certain cases for the assignment of only 50 per cent of the income from competing machines, but like the other six, it does not use the income of the blind operator as a standard. It is only the postal regulation which does so.

It should be noted that the Vocational Rehabilitation Administration of the Department of Health, Education and Welfare, the one agency which has expertise in the field of the Randolph-Sheppard Act and which may therefore be said to have greater discretion in its regulations than other agencies, provides for the assignment of "the income" from vending machines and makes no mention of an income ceiling.

Thus, of the eight agencies effectuating the same statutory provision, only the Post Office Department has seen fit to include an income ceiling. The fact that the other seven have not done so is cogent evidence for the conclusion, based on the above examination of the Randolph-Sheppard Act and the postal regulation, that this income ceiling does not lie within the area of discretion entrusted by the Act to the agencies, or in other terms, is not within the statutory authority, and is therefore invalid.

In a recent case, Theisen v. St. Paul Employees' Welfare Committee, the United States District Court of Minnesota had occasion to consider both the postal regulation permitting employee's committees to operate vending machines (section 614.63 of the Postal Manual) and the assignment of income regulation discussed above. Plaintiff in the action was the blind operator of a vending-stand in a postal building, and his original request for relief included monetary damages, the profits from the competing machines , and an injunction against the continued operation of all vending machines but his. However, the plaintiff's amended complaint eliminated the prayer for monetary relief and asked solely for an injunction against the operation of competing stands or machines. Thus, to decide the case the court had only to pass on the validity of the regulation authorizing the employee-operated machines.

The court upheld this regulation because it concluded that the Randolph-Sheppard Act does not grant the plaintiff an exclusive right to operate vending machines. In support of this conclusion, the opinion states that "no explicit provision is made for a preference with respect to automatic vending machines." This statement ignores the fact that the Act specifically provides for the assignment of income from such machines "to achieve and protect" the preference given blind persons. While this does not give the blind a preference in the operation of vending machines, it certainly does so regarding the income from such machines, and it does so explicitly.

The court also draws support for its conclusion from the legislative history of the Act. It states that proposals concerning vending machines were made in both Houses of Congress but were not included in the final version of the bill. From this, the court infers that Congress did not intend to give the blind the exclusive right to operate vending machines. However, as is typical in cases of legislative failure to enact a proposal, the legislative history referred to by the court (100 Cong. Rec. 9923, 9958-60, 10831) furnishes no substantial basis for an inference of Congressional intent.

The court's reasoning thus furnishes only the weakest support for the validity of the postal regulation permitting employees to operate vending machine s, but there are solid and obvious grounds upon which the court might have relied. First, since the Act provides for the assignment of vending machine income to blind vending-stand operators, the inference must be drawn that someone other than the blind operator is the owner and/or operator of the machines. Further, the House report accompanying what was to become the final version of the bill states, "The bill does not attempt to limit the use of vending machines on Federal property, but rather provides the preference of the blind vending stand operator shall be protected from the . . . competition of vending machines." (House Report, p. 15)

Since the assignment of income regulation discussed earlier in this article was not properly at issue in the Theisen case, the court felt free to treat the plaintiff's challenge to it in a cursory manner. The opinion merely cites a portion of the Act and indicates by way of dictum that the regulation is valid.

Regarding the regulation authorizing employee-operated machines the conclusion in Theisen that it is valid is correct, though the reasoning of the case is not persuasive. As a precedent upholding the assignment of income regulation, Theisen is of virtually no value. First, because of the limited nature of the prayer for relief, which did not seek to compel the assignment of income from the competing machines, the validity of the regulation was not properly at issue in the case, so that the court's remarks on the regulation are dictum and not part of the holding. And second, the opinion puts forth no substantial grounds in support of the regulation and fails to deal with the areas where the regulation can be strongly attacked. Therefore, if another court were to consider the validity of the assignment of income regulation, it would have to do so independently of the Theisen case, which neither serves as a precedent nor provides any persuasive reasoning for upholding the regulation.


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L. J. Theisen,

No. 3-64-Civ. 340

St. Paul Employees' Welfare Committee, Sigurd A. Bertelsen, individually and as Postmaster and as Chairman of St. Paul Employees' Welfare Committee,and Dee A. Patterson, individually and as Chief of Buildings Management Division, General Services Administration, Region 6,




SIDNEY P. ABRAMSON, Assistant United States Attorney, Attorney for Defendants


Defendants move to dismiss the complaint on various grounds.

The matter has been submitted to the Court for decision on an agreed statement of facts. The parties agree that at issue is the substantive determination of the propriety or validity of the postal department regulations .

The Court has considered the pleadings, agreed statement of facts, and the briefs of counsel.

On all the files and proceedings herein and on the attached Memorandum,


1. That the motions of defendants be, and they are hereby, denied.

2. That judgment be entered for defendants.

August 31, 1966.

/s/ Earl R. Larson
United States District Judge

Memorandum Attached.


Plaintiff brings this action under the Randolph-Sheppard Act to enjoin defendants from operating vending machines or stands in competition with him at the new Post Office Building and Annex in St. Paul. The Act provides, in 20 U.S.C. § 107:

For the purpose of providing blind persons with remunerative employment, enlarging the economic opportunities of the blind, and stimulating the blind to greater efforts in striving to make themselves self-supporting, blind persons licensed under the provisions of this chapter shall be authorized to operate vending stands on any Federal property where such vending stands may be properly and satisfactorily operated by blind persons. In authorizing the operation of vending stands on Federal property, preference shall be given, so far as feasible, to blind persons licensed by a State agency as provided in this chapter; and the head of each department or agency in control of the maintenance, operation and protection of Federal property shall, after consultation with the Secretary, and with the approval of the President, prescribe regulations designed to assure such preference (including assignment of vending machine income to achieve and protect such preference) for such licensed blind persons without unduly inconveniencing such departments and agencies or adversely affecting the interests of the United States.

In sum, this Act authorizes the operation of vending stands on Federal property by blind persons. Under the statutory scheme, The Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare (Secretary) designates State Agencies to issue licenses to blind persons to operate the stands, 20 U.S.C. § 107a(4), and the agency can select a location for the stands and the type of stand to be provided, 20 U.S.C. § 107a(c). Certain requirements are imposed upon State agencies by § 107b, among which is "to provide to any blind licensee dissatisfied with any action arising from the operation or administration of the vending stand program an opportunity for a fair hearing." 20 U.S.C. § 107b(6). The heads of departments in charge of Federal property are authorized to prescribe regulations to carry out the program. 20 U.S.C. § 107.

Plaintiff is L. J. Theisen, a blind person, who has operated a vending stand and various machines in the Post Office Building and Annex (Building) in St. Paul for eighteen years under a license issued by Business Enterprises for the Blind (Agency), the Minnesota agency designated by the Secretary pursuant to the statute. Defendants include the St. Paul Employee's Welfare Committee (Committee); Sigurd A. Bertelsen, individually and as Postmaster and as Chairman of the Committee; Dee A. Patterson, individually and as Chief of Buildings Management Division, Region 6 General Services Administration (GSA). Plaintiff claims that the income from his vending operation has been substantially diminished by competition for various vending machines operated in the Building by the Committee pursuant to authorization by defendants Bertelsen and Patterson. He seeks a permanent injunction to restrain defendants from operating such machines.

The case has been submitted on an agreed statement of facts, from which it appears that the Building is controlled partially by GSA and partially by the Post Office Department. With respect to the GSA portion of the Building, plaintiff has the exclusive right to operate vending machines. In the Post Office controlled portion of the Building, plaintiff does have some machines, but has competition from machines owned and operated by defendant Committee. As stated by the parties, "Plaintiff Theisen's major dispute hinges upon those machines controlled by the Committee which are in 'Post Office facilities,' to wit, workrooms and swingrooms utilized by postal employees. ..." Further, it is stated, "Regarding the administration of the Randolph-Sheppard Act, there is no contention and none to be made that GSA has in any fashion interfered with the instant plaintiff's ability to obtain or operate such vending machines. Plaintiff contends that the rules and regulations of the Post Office Department violate the provisions of the Randolph-Sheppard Act." Defendants have moved to dismiss the action on the grounds that (a) plaintiff has failed to exhaust administrative remedies; (b) plaintiff lacks standing; (c) this Court lacks jurisdiction to restrain public officials, and (d) that the action is an unconsented suit against the United States. In the agreed statement of facts the parties state that at issue is the propriety or validity of the Postal Department regulations.

Exhaustion of Remedies

It is a familiar principle that a party seeking relief from administrative action should first exhaust administrative remedies. Niesloss v. Bush, 293 F.2d 873 (D.C. Cir. 1961); Oil Shale Corp. v. Udall, 235 F. Supp. 606 (D. Colo. 1964). The reasons for this rule were outlined in Peter Fox Brewing Co. v. Sohio Petroleum Co., 189 F. Supp. 743, 749 (N.D. 111. 1958), aff'd, 296 F.2d 274 (7th Cir. 1961), as follows: The need for orderly procedure; the requirements of comity; the tendency to assimilate the rule that a litigant has no standing in equity where he has an adequate remedy at law; and the notion that premature judicial intervention may defeat the basic legislative intent to make full use of an agency's expertise in a particular field. But since the doctrine of exhaustion of remedies was judicially created, it can be relaxed in appropriate circumstances. Peter Fox Brewing Co. v. Sohio Petroleum Co., supra; United States v. Harvey, 131 F. Supp. 493 (N.D. Tex. 1954); United States v. McCrillis, 104 F. Supp. 183 (D. R.I.), aff'd, 200 F.2d 884 (1st Cir. 1952). For example, exhaustion is not required where no administrative procedure is available for the dispute, Peter Fox Brewing Co. v. Sohio Petroleum Co., supra; where, if available, the procedures are inadequate, Oil Shale Corp. v. Udall, supra; or where a claim is advanced on substantial grounds that an administrative authority is exceeding its legal authority, Skinner & Eddy Corp. v. United States, 249 U.S. 557 (1919).

In the instant case, plaintiff is complaining of administrative action of the Post Office officials and, in particular, the rules which permit defendant Committee to operate vending machines in competition with him. Regulations have been issued by both GSA and the Post Office Department with respect to the operation of the program under the Act. Since plaintiff does not claim that GSA has interfered with his rights in any manner, the only pertinent regulations are those of the Post Office, contained in 39 C.F.R. §§ 98. 1- .7. Under § 98. 1(a) certified blind persons "shall be authorized and have preference in the installation and operation of vending stands. ..." Applications for such stands are to be submitted by the State licensing agency, § 98. 1(b). An appeals procedure is established by § 98. 1(d)(1) for the agency with respect to the installation, maintenance and operation of the stands, as well as for matters concerning the revocation or modification of a permit and the suitability of the stand location. Under § 98.1(d)(2) the State agency is afforded an appellate procedure where it fails to agree with the local installations manager about the assignment of proceeds to the blind operator or the services he is to render. It is plaintiff's position that these procedures do not relate to him as an individual licensee, but are only applicable to the State agency. He also argues that having presented his complaints to the Agency, he has exhausted all the remedies available to him.

While the matter is not free from doubt, these regulations do not appear to provide a procedure for the type of grievance here involved. Plaintiff is challenging the regulations themselves and the provisions of the Postal Manual, rather than the ordinary work-a-day administration of the program. There is no statutory provision for a hearing on the validity of the regulations themselves and no administrative tribunal has been set up to hear such claims. The underlying statute itself makes no provision for referring disputes to an administrative process so it does not appear that Congress intended to establish primary jurisdiction in the Post Office Department or any other agency. Further, the issues involved in this suit are not such that the expertise, if any, of the Post Office Department would be interfered with. Thus, the doctrine of exhaustion of remedies does not bar the present action.

Further, plaintiff did bring his complaints to the attention of GSA and postal officials. Before this action was filed, counsel for plaintiff requested the regional office of GSA to take a position against further extension of competition from defendant Committee's vending machines, or to order it to cease. Subsequently, the Agency applied to GSA to approve the installation of vending machines in the second and third floor mailrooms , which areas are controlled by the Post Office Department. Prior to that time, machines operated by plaintiff had been removed from other areas of the Building due to construction changes. The record is not entirely clear, but it appears that approval was subsequently granted for these machines. Shortly after the application was submitted, an officer of the Agency wrote to defendant Patterson advising him of the Agency's position that the postal regulations were contrary to the Act. Thereafter, a conference was held concerning the location of vending machines in the Building, attended by plaintiff and his Counsel; representatives of the Agency; postal officials; the co-chairman of defendant Committee; representatives of the regional office of GSA and managers of the Building. After the meeting the Agency informed regional GSA officials by letter that it did not agree with the proposal advanced that plaintiff be guaranteed an income equal to the average postal employee. Further, the letter stated the Agency's position that postal regulations do not give preference to blind persons with respect to machines located in postal workrooms and swingrooms. It was suggested that the matter be referred to Washington for further study. Thereafter, the Regional GSA office advised the central GSA office of the Agency's position, but apparently no further action was taken. Since the Act and regulations provide no other procedure for the instant type of dispute, I think the foregoing was a sufficient attempt by plaintiff to have the matter resolved through the administrative process. Because of this, and the reasons hereto- fore noted, the exhaustion doctrine does not bar the action.


As indicated, the Act and the postal regulations, as well as those of GSA , evidence an intent that Government officials administer the program work through State licensing agencies. Based on this, defendants argue that plaintiff has no standing to maintain this action, but that the proper party plaintiff is the Agency. A review of the Act and regulations indicate to this Court that Congress did not intend to make State agencies the sole guardians of the rights of blind operators. What the provisions suggest is that Congress was concerned that individual operators might not be in a position to effectively deal with the mechanics of the program, and that it was preferable to have a State agency handle the operational aspects. Here plaintiff is complaining of governmental action which directly affects his interests. The doctrine of standing is meant to insure that the party who sues has an immediate interest in the outcome of the litigation. Plaintiff here has such an interest.

Unconsented Suit and Injunction Against Officials

When the motion to dismiss was filed, plaintiff's complaint sought monetary damages in addition to the profits which have been made on the machines operated by defendant Committee. The amended complaint eliminated this prayer for relief so there no longer is any issue as to whether the action constitutes an unconsented suit against the United States. However, defendants also claim that the suit should be dismissed on the ground that the actions of public officials cannot be enjoined. This position is untenable. Jurisdiction exists to entertain an injunctive action where it is claimed that administrative action is in excess of statutory authority. This rule is discussed and authorities are collected in Peering Milliken, Inc. v. Johnston, 29 5 F. 2d 856, 861 (4th Cir. 1961). See also, Leedom v. Kyne, 358 U.S. 184 (1958); Brennan v. Udall, 251 F. Supp. 12 (D. Colo. 1966). Plaintiff here claims that the postal regulations and defendants' actions pursuant to these regulations are contrary to the Randolph-Sheppard Act and thus the suit falls within the rule. The action cannot be dismissed on any of the grounds advanced, so there remains to be considered whether or not the challenged regulations are valid.

Validity of Postal Regulations

Section 614.63 of the Postal Manual authorizes the installation of vending machines by employees' groups, limited to workrooms and swingrooms. This section states further that:

As a general policy, the installation of machines in these areas will be restricted to beverage machines dispensing hot or cold products. It is not considered essential to install machines to vend cigarettes, candy, gum, mints, peanuts, crackers, or other items that can be purchased outside for later consumption.

In § 614.71 of the Manual, provision is made whereby the blind operator of vending stands may be assigned income from other vending machines in the building "when machines are being operated by an employees' committee in proximity to a stand or machines operated by a blind person and are in competition therewith and a blind operator is not receiving an adequate income. ..." The same provision is contained in 39 C.F.R. § 98.7(a). In addition, the postal regulation in 39 C.F.R. § 98. 1(a) provides that licensed blind persons shall be given preference in the installation and operation of vending stands on property operated or maintained by the Post Office Department, but plaintiff makes no claim that he has not been given preference with respect to the stand itself in the St. Paul Building. The essence of plaintiff's claim is that by assuring blind persons of a preference in the operation of vending stands on Federal property, the Randolph- Sheppard Act does not permit the Post Office Department to authorize employee committees to operate competing vending machines. Defendant Committee has machines located on three floors of the Building on which plaintiff has none. On three other floors, both plaintiff and defendant Committee have machines, but the dispute centers primarily on those located in post office work- rooms and swingrooms, which are authorized by § 614.63 of the Postal Manual. Comparing this section with the Act, this Court cannot say that it is invalid. While the Act provides that "preference shall be given, so far as feasible, to blind persons" to operate vending stands, no explicit provision is made for a preference with respect to automatic vending machines. Further, the legislative history reveals that Congress considered the competition which blind vending stand operators might experience from employee operated automatic vending machines and rejected proposals designed to ensure that they be given such preference. During the Senate discussions, Senator Gore suggested an amendment which would have given blind operators preference for vending machines. 100 Cong. Rec . 9923. The House also discussed the question of whether blind operators or employee committees should operate and receive profits from automatic vending machines, and there too a proposal was advanced which would have given the blind operator this right. It was , however, rejected. 100 Cong. Rec. 9958-60. As ultimately enacted then, the provisions of the Randolph-Sheppard Act contain no preference for operation of vending machines by blind persons. 100 Cong. Rec. 10831, 11793. Thus , the statutory language fails to substantiate plaintiff's contention that he has the exclusive right to operate such machines in the Post Office Building. It is argued, however, that the postal regulations are contrary to the spirit and purpose of the Act since it was designed to provide a means for blind persons to become self-supporting. Plaintiff maintains that Congress did not intend to set up a program "to enlarge the economic opportunities of the blind" only to have them face competition and diminution of income from employee operated vending machines. However compelling that argument may be, this Court cannot read into the Act a provision which was specifically omitted by the legislators.

Plaintiff also challenges the validity of the assignment of income regulations, contained in § 614.71 of the Postal Manual and 39 C.F.R. § 98.7, which states:

Profits from all vending machines presently operated by a licensed blind operator of a lobby stand, either in conjunction with his stand or in other areas of the same building under the control of the Post Office Department shall be assigned to the blind operator. When machines are being operated by an employees' committee in proximity to a stand or machines operated by a blind person and are in competition therewith, and a blind operator is not receiving an adequate income, consideration shall be given to assigning him all or part of the profits from other vending machines in the same building, regardless of location. (Adequate income is construed as being the equivalent of the average income of the average employee at the installation.) Reassignment of profits shall be considered only upon request from a State licensing agency to a postmaster or other postal official in charge of an installation. Assignment of profits to the blind operated from other vending machine[s] shall be determined by the postal official in charge and the State licensing agency on the basis of the following:

(1) Proximity to and competition with the vending stand;

(2) Amount of income which accrues to the operator from the stand operation; and

(3) Amount of profits from vending machines not operated in connection with the stand.

Plaintiff claims the regulation is deficient overall because it operates as a grant to the blind operator, rather than allowing him to be self-supporting. In addition, it is argued that the regulation attempts to place a ceiling on the blind person's income. Specifically challenged are the factors set up to be used in determining the amount of income to be assigned. In his complaint plaintiff has not sought an injunction against the enforcement of this regulation, nor has he sought to compel assignment of income pursuant to it. However, it might be noted that the Act itself, in § 107, provides that the Secretary shall prescribe regulations to further the purpose of the Act, "including assignment of vending machine income to achieve and protect such preference." Again, in § 107(b) the Act authorizes State licensing agencies to set aside funds in order to assure a "fair minimum return to the operators of the vending stands. ..." Because of the posture of plaintiff's amended complaint, this matter need not be dealt with further. As already indicated, defendants' actions pursuant to § 614.63 are not manifestly beyond the scope of the Act and therefore cannot be enjoined. The defendants are entitled to judgment.

The foregoing constitute Findings and Conclusions within Rule 52 of the Rules of Civil Procedure.

August 31, 1966.

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Speaking on "Blindness--Discrimination, Hostility and Progress," Kenneth Jernigan, National Federation of the Blind first vice president, addressed the Delaware Valley Regional meeting of the American Association of Workers for the Blind at the "Warwick Hotel in Philadelphia on December 5.

Citing examples of discriminations against the blind in issuance of insurance policies, in traveling on public conveyances and in seeking enrollment in schools of education, Jernigan pointed out that the increasing resistance of the blind to these discriminations--no matter how moderate and rational such resistance may be--inevitably brings a certain amount of hostility, but even that hostility represents progress.

"As more and more blind persons receive training and take their place in the regular economic and social life of the community, ancient stereotypes and misclassifications begin to diminish and lose their force. Although there are individual instances of hostility and resentment at the advancement of the blind, these are by no means predominant," he asserted, concluding that:

"The overwhelming sentiment of the public toward the blind is one of good will and encouragement. Likewise, although there are individual blind persons who are arrogant or overly aggressive, or who cling to their dependent status, the great majority wish only for equal opportunity and equal responsibility. In fact, it cannot be said too often that achievement is made of high hopes and hard work, of drudgery and dreams. The blind of America are willing to work, and work hard; but they also dare to dream."

The AAWB delegates responded to Jernigan's address with an enthusiastic ovation.

Also on the morning program were Sidney B. Cohen, recently appointed AAWB executive secretary, and Paul Duke, a blind computer designer for the Radio Corporation of America. Bringing greetings from the AAWB National Office, Cohen outlined his plans for increasing membership and activity during the coming year. Duke told of his problems in establishing himself in computer programming and design, concentrating on the approach which rehabilitation counselors should take in working with blind clients.

At the noon luncheon talks were given by Samuel Mintz, clinical psychologist at the Eastern State School and Hospital, Trevos, Pennsylvania, and Louis H. Rives, Jr., president of the American Association of Workers for the Blind and special assistant to the commissioner of the Federal Vocational Rehabilitation Administration. Rives spoke on civil rights in the rehabilitation field.

In the afternoon the conference divided into group sessions, one on computer programming, the other on the residential school picture which was addressed by the retired superintendent of The Maryland School for the Blind, Francis M. Andrews.

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The books were conspicuous by their scarcity. Children were trying to read (what books there were) from dots that were flattened against the paper, through constant use and age. Book bindings were poor if they existed at all. The paper resembled blotting paper, soft and spongy, making the retention of the dots impossible. Loose leaves took the place of books.

These were problems that disturbed Isabelle Grant, as a blind American teacher of the blind, on her two tours of Southeast Asia. Her first tour was a personal one when she took her first sabbatical leave in 1959 after more than 20 years of teaching in Los Angeles City schools. Finding the urge to go back insatiable, in 1962 she returned for two years under a U.S. State Department Fulbright grant to assist in the training of teachers and in the education of blind children in Pakistan.

When she returned home to Los Angeles, a particular newspaper article deeply affected her: it told of the destruction of "outmoded" textbooks by departments of education. To the schoolteacher in Isabelle Grant, the paradox was shocking: one nation with textbooks to burn, while another scrapes together pages to make what few it can. Why not "collect and send 1?" asked Dr. Grant -- and the idea for "Operation: Braille Books for Overseas Blind" was born.

To actualize her vision, Dr. Grant turned to the newly organized International Federation of the Blind. The IFB undertook Dr. Grant's proposal as an official project. In view of the limited treasury of the IFB, partial support to meet expenses is supplied by the United States' National Federation of the Blind World Fund. The purposes of Operation: Braille Books for Overseas Blind are clearly a reaffirmation of two purposes of the IFB itself: the blind of all nations working "for the progressive improvement and modernization, throughout the world, of . . . the education. . . of the blind"; and to "furnish a beacon for the underprivileged and disadvantaged blind people of the earth -- and create a potent symbol through which blind people everywhere seek the rights and opportunities that are the birthright of all men."

For more than a year now, Dr. Grant has been gathering discarded books, surplus books and old editions and reshipping them overseas. Through person 1 letters to departments of education, to blind individuals, to schools for the blind, to organizations of the blind across the country and through announcements in the NFB's BRAILLE MONITOR, she has found a wealth of still useful Grade II braille books. Some volumes are disturbingly unmatched, some inappropriate, some with incomplete titles and still more with missing units. Gradually, the situation is righting itself, and complete volumes of one title are now being thoughtfully packed in one carton before being forwarded to Dr. Grant.

On arrival in Los Angeles, the cartons are stored in Dr. Grant's two garages and on her outside porch, while two rooms in her apartment have been converted into an assembling and packing workshop. The final packages must not exceed 15 1/2 pounds to comply with postal regulations regarding free shipping of reading material for the blind. The NFB supplies Dr. Grant with wrapping paper, twine and assists in such incidentals as additional fees to send braille writers and typewriters weighing over the statutory limit of free mail.

"With the exception of foreign language textbooks, the books are in English. Most blind schools and hostels in Southeast Asia are English medium schools, many having been started by missionaries. British publications are often preferred, but any books bearing on the required subject are deeply welcome. Not surprisingly, the most frequently requested is the English dictionary.

As of last fall, more than 5,000 parcels have been sent--more than 20,000 books and magazines--to better than 80 blind schools, organizations of the blind and blind individuals. And the demand is increasing.

The books already received are far from adequate, Dr. Grant hastens to add. As in American schools, the emphasis has been on the academic. A more practical interpretation of the need would include books on animal husbandry, poultry raising, general farming, light industry, home and community mechanics.

Among the difficulties Dr. Grant faces are packages lost in the mail and the time element--it takes two to three months for packages to reach Central Africa, India, Pakistan or Ceylon. Also, some requested books are simply not available from the discarded and surplus shelves, and therefore , must be purchased.

In the future, Dr. Grant would like to be able to send a much larger quantity of appliances. Every letter requests braille frames, braille paper, styluses, braille machines, geometric and algebraic equipment, folding canes, transistor radios, school cricket sets and chess sets. A new era is dawning in the use of the typewriter as a means of communication -- to help this process, Dr. Grant has been able to send four copies of a three -volume text on learning to type and a few second-hand typewriters overseas.

One need that Dr. Grant is searching for a way to fill is that of a braille watch -- a mark of status, if not of dignity. Because of the cost, she has only been able to send broken watches -- which go duty free -- knowing that parts are conceivably interchangeable and one good watch may result out of three or four broken ones.

According to Dr. Grant, the most urgent field in the growth of her project lies in developing auditory reading. Tapes in the vernacular could be a vital source of interest, information and education -- especially for post-adolescent and adult blind persons who listen more readily than they read. Although the electric current in
several countries is anything but adequate, Dr. Grant does not consider it a deterrent as improvements are being made. Her basic problem is finding tape recorders.

By far the most valuable by-product of Operation: Braille Books to Dr. Grant is the establishing of friendship with "our fellow blind":

Through this blind-person-to-blind-person relationship we can by interchange of thought, of information, and of interest, give that lift and encouragement necessary to the elevation of their local condition in the light of comparison with other nations. Their aspirations are ours. Cultures may differ in certain respects but essentially they and we have the same goals -- recognition, self-determination, acceptance, self-respect, with education and training to make these goals possible.

There is no end to the story of Operation: Braille Books for the Overseas Blind. Even as it is being told, letters are arriving at Dr. Grant's home. . .

From Zambia, a young student struggling with his English: "Respected Madem. I want to be familiar with you. I want to say my situation to you. Sir, there are six number in my house. I am in standard six. I am nineteen. My father is ill. I need many books, a frame and stylus and paper."

From Java, following the break of a dam and the flooding of cities: "Our house was flooded in the ground floor. A few of the braille books which I prize so highly were damaged by the water. Please send more books."

And from Kerala, in the face of his own disappointment, a student encourages Dr. Grant: "I hear that the three fraims and styluses which you sent have lost. Now everything you send with new address will arrive safely. Please do not give up your work."

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Another step in the campaign to end discrimination in life insurance underwriting against the blind has been taken by the National Federation of the Blind.

Prepared by NFB President Jacobus tenBroek and David Nawi, his research assistant, a statement -- "Insurance Discrimination against the Blind" -- attacking this practice was presented by NFB Secretary Russell Kletzing to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners on December 7 in Dallas.

As reported in the April 1966 MONITOR, the debate on the insurability of the blind grew out of a sustained correspondence between Manuel Urena, blind assistant director of the Iowa Commission for the Blind, and Victor E. Henningsen, vice president of the Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company. The company had denied Urena normal coverage for Accidental Death Benefits and Waiver of Premium Benefit on Disability, solely on the ground of blindness.

The struggle was taken up by Kenneth Jernigan, acting as both NFB first vice president and Director of the Iowa Commission. He requested Iowa's Commissioner of Insurance to hold that insurance companies discriminating against the blind are in violation of that state's antidiscrimination insurance statute [see July MONITOR].

It was clear, however, that if a nation-wide change was sought, the confrontation would have to be taken to a national level. Therefore, Jernigan arranged the appearance before the NAIC's Life, Accident and Health Committee at its annual convention last month. Due to a last-minute, conflicting engagement, he could not attend, and Kletzing took over to present the NFB's stand.

The statement claims that charging the blind higher premiums for life and accident insurance and denying them certain types of insurance are practices which violate Constitutional principles, statutory provisions, public policy and simple standards of fairness.

Its basic thesis is that since insurance companies are required to afford equal treatment to all persons presenting the same risk, and since blind persons cannot be shown to present a greater risk than normal, insurance companies must offer the blind the same policies, at the same rates, that they offer others. The requirement of equal treatment is found most specifically in state statutes which prohibit insurance companies from discriminating in the rates, terms or conditions offered to persons of equal life expectancy. It is also part of the broader prohibition of denial of equal protection of the laws found in the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution; and it is supported by two basic policies -- that against arbitrary discrimination, and that in favor of full participation by the blind in the life of the community.

The statement turns from the substantive requirements of the policy of equal treatment to the medical and statistical evidence relevant to the question of whether the blind do in fact constitute a class with a greater insurance risk than normal. Such evidence consists mainly of four separate studies of the mortality rate of blind persons. The studies were published during a period of over thirty years, and they vary widely in the numbers of persons studied and the methods used to select those persons. The results of the studies are not at all uniform and are said to "show no direct relation between blindness and life expectancy, but. . . rather that certain diseases which cause blindness produce a lower life expectancy."

The study concludes that since insurance companies already base separate treatment of prospective insurants on diseases and conditions which cause blindness and also reduce life expectancy, and since blindness itself cannot be shown to be related to lower life expectancy, insurance companies must accord the blind the same treatment they accord others of normal life expectancy.

Inkprint copies of the complete text are available upon request from the Office of the President, NFB, 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708. It is hoped that NFB affiliates will take this matter up with their state insurance commissioners asking them to do what they can to bring this discrimination to an end.

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From Los Angeles, Dr. Isabelle Grant writes: While returning from tie California Council of the Blind convention in Long Beach and waiting in line to board a bus for Porterville, Earlene Carpenter was refused permission to enter the bus on the basis that she did not have an escort or guide. The bus driver refused to take her along, and she had to wait for another bus. The second bus driver accepted her on his bus. I wrote, at Earlene's request, to the Greyhound Bus Company and was informed that it is up to the bus driver to accept or reject passengers. On this basis, I say that we are classed with drunks and irresponsibles, and I wonder if we can or should do anything more about it.

The Northern Nevada Association of the Blind celebrated its 15th anniversary on November 30 with a dinner at the Reno Recreation Center. The honored guests were Earl and Grace Church, charter members, and Mrs. Lela Hargreaves, mother of Joe Hargreaves, who, with Mr. Church, co-founded the organization. The highlight came when Gar Orcutt, president, presented to Mr. and Mrs. Church the Honorary Lifetime Memberships awarded to them at the recent convention of the Nevada Federation of the Blind in Ely.

Mervin Flander, supervisor of the Nevada State Division of Services to the Blind, has announced the opening of a rehabilitation center for the blind in Carson City, which will offer complete rehabilitation training to blind Nevadans. It will be operated in the manner of the center in Des Moines, Iowa, which is world- renowned for its training program.

The Denver (Colorado) Area Association of the Blind chartered a bus to take its members to an open house at the Colorado School for the Blind at Colorado Springs, November 22.

In California: Sacramento guide dog users report serious problems in using restaurants and public transportation facilities despite the state law banning discrimination in the use of these facilities trouble is reportedly caused by one or two poorly controlled guide dogs who have made property owners and bus drivers suspicious of the entire breed. One extreme incident was that of a guide dog who mistook a bus aisle for a park flower bed.

From the Associated Press: A German psychiatrist, Prof. Friederich Panse of Duesseldorf, testified in Frankfurt that Adolf Hitler once had psychiatric treatment for temporary blindness, claiming it was an aftermath of mustard-gas poisoning in World War I. Panse said examination showed instead that the blindness was induced by hysteria. He was a witness at a trial of three German doctors accused of sending thousands of mentally ill Germans to gas chambers.

The Fall River Chapter of the Associated Blind of Massachusetts gave an "Appreciation Dance" to thank the local unit of the Bay State Emergency Radio Corps for providing free transportation every other week to the Handicap Center in neighboring New Bedford.

The March 4 disappearance of blind piano tuner Gerald E. Henke is still high on the "unsolved" list of Southfield (a suburb of Detroit, Michigan) police. Reported to have been carrying $200 to $500, he vanished on the way to a Detroit client. Police say they've followed more than a hundred leads --as far away as Washington, Mexico and Kentucky -- without uncovering a trace. His partly blind wife, who has been living off $44 a month welfare allowance since Henke's disappearance, insists he would not leave her. A nationwide Associated Press picture showed the 6-foot-2-l/2 inch, 31-year-old Henke's outstanding characteristics: a widow's peak in his brown hair and a depression over his right temple. He made his rounds carrying a white cane.

For many years, Southern Nevada Sightless, Inc., our Nevada Federation affiliate in Las Vegas, has successfully operated its own center. This past year, the coordinated Lions Clubs of Las Vegas built an addition to the center which has tripled or quadrupled work possibilities. The members now have a separate ceramics room, with kilns, specially designed work table and drying shelves; three small separate class rooms for braille, typing and tape recording; a separate office and show room; a large general room; and an enlarged kitchen, where they can now give cooking classes. Besides adult classes and recreation, they also carry on programs for blind children.

From the Supreme Court Reporter: The Ohio Court of Appeals has affirmed an award of total disability benefits under an accident policy to one who, solely because of trauma, lost sight in one eye after having previously lost sight in the other eye as a result of disease. In so deciding, the court overruled a contention that, since one sees with two eyes, loss of sight of one from disease would preclude coverage no matter what happened to the other eye. (Garrigan v. Fidelity and Casualty Co. of New York, May 18, 1966, 216 N.E.2d 89 1, 6 Ohio App. 2d 141; opinion by Judge Oscar Hunsicker.)

The establishment of a Master Tape Library at Recording for the Blind, Inc. , has inaugurated a major expansion of its free educational service to the blind and visually handicapped. As of this past October, master tapes of all newly recorded titles of textbooks and other educational material will be permanently retained in a Master
Tape Library in the organization's New York City headquarters, 215 E. 58th Street. A three to five year period is estimated to convert the education disc library to an equivalent number of books on master tapes. By writing to Recording for the Blind, Inc. , blind students may secure recorded books for themselves or have an educational book recorded for them individually, at no cost.

From The Machinist come the following "words to the wise": Poverty anywhere threatens prosperity everywhere. The man who DOES NOT read has no advantage over the man who CANNOT read. The man too old to learn was always too old to learn. Most footprints on the sands of time were made by work shoes.

A major reorganization of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare will be presented to Congress early in the session. As discussed by HEW Secretary John Gardner, the plans call for an organization similar to the Defense Department with a Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare (with its name probably changed) and three secretaries under him. The administrative units of the Department (with some additional ones being transferred from other departments) would be assigned to the three assistant secretaries. Under one Secretary would be grouped education and related activities; under a second, social security, public welfare and related activities; and in a third, health and health- related activities. In a November press conference Secretary Gardner tentatively grouped the Vocational Rehabilitation Commission with the health programs.

From The Evening Times, Trenton, New Jersey: An ordinance approved by City Council on the recommendation of Mayor Carmen J. Armenti puts the blind operator of the City Hall newsstand back on the city payroll. The move to pay Arthur Linsinbigler $1,050 a year to dispense information along with coffee and candy ends an 18-month controversy which started when the former administration unceremoniously wiped out the job title and removed the stand's information sign. [Linsinbigler is president of the Associated Blind of New Jersey.]

Recent public health studies indicate that almost 3 per cent of [ American] Indian children of school age have trachoma -- a highly communicable disease, rarely encountered in the general population, which can lead to blindness. The last Congress earmarked $250,000 of Indian health funds for its control.

An HEW release: New services for rehabilitating a larger number of disabled persons -- especially the difficult cases -- will be possible through $6 million in "expansion grants" available this year to State vocational rehabilitation agencies and other private and nonprofit organizations. The projects, with the Federal Government providing up to 90 per cent of the funds, will focus on such disabled persons as alcoholics, the deaf, welfare recipients, public offenders and those with spinal cord injuries.

Attorney Gregory B. Khachadoorian has been re-elected for his fifth term in the House of Representatives and has also been reappointed as chairman of the Advisory Board of the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind.

Greeting cards for all occasions in combination braille and inkprint are available from a blind-deaf braille embosser, Harry A Fribush. Priced at 14 for one dollar, the cards come in assortments for birthday, get well, baby congratulations, anniversary and sympathy. Upon request, Fribush will sign your name in braille for free; to have your name added in inkprint is 25 cents extra. He also has a special assortment of combination braille -inkprint Easter cards, 12 for one dollar. For further information and/or to order cards, write to Harry A. Fribush, 27 Colonial Avenue, Albany, New York 12203.

From Van Nuys, Calif., The News: A parasitic infection which sometimes causes congenital blindness also may be responsible for certain spontaneous abortions. A team of doctors from the UCLA Medical School, the National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Blindness, and the Southern California Permanent Medical Group conducted blood tests of 3,796 women of childbearing age for evidence of toxoplamosis. This parasitic infection usually doesn't produce symptoms in the mother. It may, however, cause blindness and other abnormalities in her offspring. It was found that those women with high levels of antibodies against toxoplasmosis had significantly greater frequency of spontaneous abortions than those with low levels or none.

Mothers receiving federal assistance grants under the Aid to Dependent Children program in Medford, Oregon, have organized for legislative action under the name "Homemakers Anonymous."

The Colorado Federation of the Blind, in sending a donation to support THE BRAILLE MONITOR, wrote: "We have found no more effective manner of selling our message to the public, whether it be for White Cane Safety Day, the model White Cane Law or establishing relationships with various agencies and organizations for some of our local projects , than to whip out a copy of the MONITOR. It is the blind speaking for themselves."

A past director of the Progressive Blind of Missouri and long-time member of the Allied Workers for the Blind of Kansas City, Mo., Dillard Ory died November 22 at the age of 60 at the Axtell Hospital in Princeton, Mo., after a lengthy illness. A life-long resident of Princeton, he had operated a shoe shine stand there for many years.

Xena Johnson was among the small group that drove the 100 miles from Kansas City to Princeton for the final services: "Mr. Ory was a follower, not a leader. He was dedicated in his efforts for those causes in which he believed. In his local community he constantly worked and talked about the organized blind. While the final rites were very simple, I was particularly impressed that the Chief of Police gathered business- men for pallbearers and took his police car to lead the procession, thus witnessing to their extremely high regard for Dillard."

To find the challenging job you've always wanted, according to PICS Progress Report (Personnel Information Communication System), just phone Western Union Operator 77. Forms will be sent to you that, when returned, will be computerized to match your skills to "nationwide job openings." A blind chap in Pittsburgh sent out the forms, which were then disgorged by the machine. The asserted ground was that he didn't have the employment qualifications. He suspects that the machine bears the imprint of Man's ancient prejudices against the blind. Any blind person applying should let the MONITOR know what happens.

From National Institutes on Rehabilitation and Health Services, Labor Rehabilitation Report, December 1966: A three-judge panel ruled in a national test case that the loyalty oath required of one in ten Medicare applicants is unconstitutional. Barring the government's successful appeal, an estimated 2 million Medicare applicants not covered by Social Security, or other civil service programs, will no longer be required to declare membership in Communist groups registered under the Internal Security Act of 1950. Prior to the decision, an admitted member of a subversive group was automatically disqualified for hospital insurance benefits. The panel, holding that the asking of the loyalty question and signing of the disclaimer violated the First Amendment, noted that applicants are never told they are not required to answer the question, and stated: "it appears to the court that the Government is saying on the one hand that the question need not be answered and on the other hand that failing to reveal such membership is subject to penalty." The American Civil Liberties Union filed suit for Mrs. Alda T. Reed, a Los Angeles housewife, who refused to answer the loyalty question "as a matter of conscience."

From the Cleveland Plain Dealer: South Vietnamese soldiers blinded in combat will soon have a brighter future, thanks to a blind 79 -year-old American woman who has spent almost 44 years in the Orient. A recipient in 1963 of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Miss Genevieve Caufield spent last month on a speaking tour of the United States to raise funds for the first Vietnamese rehabilitation center for the blind, which opens this month in Saigon.

Almost three thousand blind men and women earned an average salary of $4,932 last year operating vending stands, according to Mary E. Switzer, commissioner, Vocational Rehabilitation Administration. Gross sales of $65 million showed a ten per cent increase over the previous year for the 2,661 stands located throughout the United States.

A blind osteopath and former state legislator from Exeter, Nebraska, Dr. Claire E. Owens died at the age of 90 on November 10, Named the "Outstanding Pioneer Woman" by the fourth district of the Federated Women's Clubs of Nebraska, Dr. Owens served two terms in Nebraska's old two-house Legislature in the 1930's, put in 19 years as a school music teacher and, this year, completed her 46th year of continuous practice as an osteopath.

The joint legislative committee of the Michigan Council of the Blind and the Michigan Association of Workers for the Blind met in Detroit, November 19. The MCB asked for support of the model white cane law and the amendment of the Fair Labor Practices Act.

In the welfare area, the secretary was asked to draw up a resolution calling for revision of the budget figures used to determine the amount of money which aid recipients must receive.

Because the state is moving to state-equalized evaluation instead of assessed evaluation and because this will greatly raise property taxes, the committee voted to propose a tax exemption for the blind based on income.

The Colorado Federation of the Blind was honored at its banquet with the presence of 2nd Lt. Clifford M. Jensen, Company Commander at Ft. Leonard Wood, Missouri, writes corresponding secretary Marie Jensen -- even if he did leave for Missouri in his new little blue bug with mamma's car keys in his pocket.

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By Professor Jacobus tenBroek

Editor's note: The evidence has been presented. It is now that point in the trial when the prosecuting attorney, Dr. Jacobus tenBroek, will present his summation -- the hard core of his plea for complete social and economic integration for the blind and the physically disabled in this life, in this world, now.

In installments since August, Professor tenBroek has been presenting his argument, each month uncovering a new facet of social change which the law of torts does not yet meet, but which the blind must in order "to live in the world."

An appendix -- the Model White Cane Law --is included in this last installment. Hopefully, when it has become law in each state, it will help legally to overcome obstacles now placed before the blind and the physically disabled.

The complete text--as originally prepared for a Law of the Poor symposium which Dr. tenBroek organized last year--is available in both braille and inkprint from the Office of the President, NFB, 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708. It is hoped that local National Federation of the Blind affiliates and chapters will take advantage of its availability and put it to good use. The trial is not over yet.

[Vol. 54:841 1966]


Writers on the law of torts tell us that tort law, always particularly responsive to changing social conditions, is now reaching a new stage in its development.412 Originally concerned primarily with the protection of property and land, it came to focus, in the period of the industrial revolution, on other forms of property and on injuries to the person, shifting emphasis from the kind of interest infringed to the kind of conduct which created the injury.413 Today, when millions of individuals are exposed to traffic, industrial, and many other kinds of accidents, which they are more or less powerless to prevent, individual responsibility for them based on the kind of conduct which brought them about is giving way to community responsibility based on the fact of harm. In accommodating to this change and in contributing to it, concepts of negligence have undergone a transformation; liability has been imposed on the industry the operations of which created the risk; private insurance carriers have assumed the burden and distributed the costs of liability; and social insurance has increasingly entered the field to protect men against hazards of old age, survivorship, unemployment, and disability—hazards over which the individual has little or no control.414 Does the law of torts today in its dealings with the physically disabled reflect these broad social and legal changes, and especially, how does it stand with respect to the policy of integrating the disabled into the social, economic, and physical life of the community? This is the central question to be asked in reviewing many other fields affecting the disabled as well. Does the law of torts in its basic concepts and current application consciously reject that policy, treat it as a matter of indifference, passively acquiesce in it, or actively implement it? Among these alternatives, it is clear that the courts do not react positively to this policy, either by way of support or rejection. Indifference and acquiescence also do not accurately describe the judicial attitude. Unawareness is the precise characterization. In the cases, there is nothing like a systematic examination of the policy and its implications for the law of torts. One must scour hard to find an occasional reference to it.

Yet integration is the avowed policy of the land. However imperfectly and variously carried out, it is expressed in the self-care and self-support provisions of the Social Security Act;415 the sprawling rehabilitation programs of the nation and states;416 the orientation and rehabilitation centers now multiplying across the country; the programs for the education of the disabled in the public schools; the opening up, still quite incompletely in many areas, of state and federal civil service to the disabled on a non-discriminatory basis;417 special statutes striking down artificial and arbitrary barriers to the employment of the disabled as teachers in the public schools;418 and the increasing official and unofficial acceptance of disabled persons on a basis of their individual merits. In the past, the courts have been the dominant force in the creation of the substantive rules of conduct and liability. This has been true generally and specifically with respect to the physically disabled, and their rights to be abroad in the land. In fact, in earlier periods and in many jurisdictions, their rules on this subject embodied a policy in advance of the times. The legislature has now increasingly entered the field. Neither as a matter of the independent judicial role nor as a matter of independent judicial wisdom should the courts disregard the policy of integration thus declared by the legislature; rather decisional law should not only be brought into harmony with that policy but should give it active aid and comfort.

To recognize, as the House of Lords recently did in the Haley case,419 and, as many American courts have done long since,420 that social integration of the disabled is coming into practice and that considerable and ever-increasing numbers of the severely disabled are venturing into the community, and to adapt the law to that practice, is in a sense inevitable—and inevitably slow in some jurisdictions. But these judicial decisions are a response to the fact and not to the policy, to what is and not also to what ought to be. The demands of the policy are what now summon the spirit of reform and acknowledgement of the role of the legislature in the law of torts as it applies to the disabled.

Such reform would not necessarily entail casting aside the traditional framework of the law of negligence, though that might help. What is of utmost importance about carrying on the judicial analysis and discussion of the rights of the disabled to live in the world in the concepts and catch phrases of the law of negligence—unreasonable risk of harm, fault, due care, reasonable man of ordinary prudence, contributory negligence, greater caution, foreseeability—is not just that individual volition and personal conduct are stressed in areas in which they are no longer of paramount significance. The important point is that these concepts and phrases do not place in sharp relief the social policy at stake. Indeed, they come dangerously close actually to obstructing the view of that policy. The question to be asked is not whether the defendant created an unreasonable risk of harm, but whether he interfered with the effectuation of the policy of the social integration of the disabled; not whether the plaintiff conducted himself as a reasonable man of ordinary prudence acting in the light of all the circumstances, but whether he acted pursuant to his right to be a part of his community. Such a transformation of the forms and tests to be applied by the judges would not remove all legal limitations on the conduct of the disabled person. Other policies regarding what the English court of appeals called the ordinary transactions of life, such as those related to the need to dig trenches in the streets, would have to be given their necessary scope. The policy of integration, too, has its own built-in limitations: It cannot be pushed beyond the physical capacity of the disabled. But implementation of that policy does mean that many acts now regarded by those who are not disabled as unreasonable and foolhardy, but which nevertheless are within the disabled person's sense of the risks he must or would run to regain the life-bestowing benefits of the mainstream, would not be taken at his cost, or even at the cost of the trench-digger, but at the cost of the community.

The same result could be achieved also, it is recognized, within the traditional framework of tort law by reading the policy into the existing tests, by declaring reasonable that conduct of the disabled person which is in conformity with the policy, and unreasonable that conduct of the defendant which interferes with the policy. This method of reform fits in with the historic mode of the common law in adapting to changed social and economic conditions. By it, the reform can be accomplished gradually, without any appearance of discontinuity in the law, and within all the conservative safeguards of case-by-case trial. On the other hand, this this method of reform tends to obscure, not only from everybody else, but from the judges themselves, the changes that are necessary and that are being made. It confuses the new direction by using the old signposts. The hands are less likely to be the hands of Esau if the voice is that of Jacob.

Basic determinants of decisions in the law of torts, are, textwriters agree, morality, admonition, compensation, imposition of costs on those who have a capacity to bear them, and the interest of furthering desirable activity without imposing disproportionate burdens on any individuals or groups.421 Some of the overtones and some of the partially buried presuppositions of the reasonable man formula are moralistic and individualistic, deriving from the origins of modern negligence law in the industrial revolution and concomitant ethical, economic and political philosophy. In the era of unrestricted free enterprise, the law of torts moved toward the position that there could be no liability without fault and no fault without personal blameworthiness.422 Dean Prosser emphasizes that personal fault has become, or is becoming, legal or social fault—"departure from the conduct required of a man by society for the protection of others"423—and that legal or social fault is giving way to the notion that the primary task is to decide which interest should prevail "even where no one is at fault."424 But the turn of the century is still turning; and the process of discarding fault liability is far from complete. In considering what is desirable or possible social policy, great weight will always have to be given to the "ethical or moral sense of the community, its feeling of what is fair and just."425 Today the integration policy is beginning to rest on such community feelings. But fault analysis is remarkably fruitless where there is no fault. Whether the disabled pedestrian or the city or its insurance carrier should bear the cost of an injury to the pedestrian resulting from a hazard in the street created by the city is a question of social policy, not of morality. Is the policy of integration of such social importance that it should outweigh the policy, also judged in terms of its social importance, of allowing public bodies which go about digging sewer ditches and opening other holes in the street to do so without the burden, be it slight or great, of seeing to it that the disabled, among other people, will not be injured thereby.

Ideas of compensating the victim and admonishing the wrongdoer are basically linked to presuppositions about fault. The wrongdoer, that is the party who was at fault, must compensate the victim, that is, the party who was innocently going about his business, for the wrong done. Ideas of compensation, punishment, and prevention shade into each other. The admonitory objective of the law of torts today aims at reducing accidents by governing future conduct through the imposition of liability. This, however, is a one way street. It can have a deterrent impact only if liability is imposed on the defendant. The disabled prospective plaintiff does not wait to read the latest negligence decision before going out into the streets to mail a letter, catch a bus, or visit a friend. Even if he did do so and could understand it, the chances are good that he would reject it. The courts' notions of a reasonably prudent disabled person often do not agree with the notions of the reasonably prudent disabled person himself. He, for the most part, figures out what is convenient, possible, or safe for him, sometimes with the advice of experienced and knowledgeable persons, not infrequently on the basis of his own individual trial and error. On the other hand, it is the business of liability-conscious cities, insurance carriers, and construction and transportation companies, to keep abreast of the latest judicial decisions with an eye to altering their operations so as to avoid or reduce liabilities.

So with the distribution of the costs of accidents. The plaintiff generally cannot bear them personally and generally does not carry insurance against them. To the extent that he can bear them they may be ruinous. The defendant, on the other hand, a city, or a construction or transportation company, a store, business, or other place of public accommodation, can transmit the cost to a wider public by means of prices, rates, taxes or insurance. This also goes for the automobile driver, who, though he is only somewhat better off than the disabled pedestrian his car struck down, yet is usually covered by insurance. In the end, those who have the capacity to bear the costs must do so. Even aside from this principle of economic necessity, the cost of social policy should be borne by society. If the policy of integration is socially valuable, then it should be financed by the public generally, least of all by the necessitous disabled traveler. Thus, while the individualistic, moralistic, fault bases of the reasonable man doctrines of the law of torts have no particular relevance to most aspects of the integration policy, and when they are invoked anyway, they are today tending more and more to give support to that policy, the admonitory, compensatory, and cost distribution aspects of the reasonable man doctrine—as in actual administration they tend to impose the liability on the defendant and the cost on the public—move in the general direction of supporting the policy of integration, though not necessarily consciously or for reasons that relate to the policy.

As a substitute for the policy of integration, or as a vehicle for effectuating it, the reasonable man standard suffers from another serious weakness. However much the courts may instruct juries that the reasonably prudent man is an idealized mortal, possessing human, not superhuman virtues, but no human or subhuman weaknesses or depravities; however often they may repeat that he is an abstraction not to be confused with any identifiable individual, and especially not with a judge or juror; and however much they may emphasize that he acts in the light of all of the circumstances and that he is physically disabled when the plaintiff is, the jurors are almost entirely able-bodied (blind people are excluded from jury service), and the judge has sound if somewhat aging limbs, fair enough eyesight, and, according to counsel, can hear everything but a good argument. The abstraction they conceive is unavoidably in their image and, in any event, will be applied through the filter of their experiences and make-up. Standing on good feet and legs, erect through the strength of taut muscles, peering through eyes approaching or receding from 20/20 visual acuity, the judge or juror, or their personified image, provide the blind, the deaf, the lame, and the otherwise physically disabled with a standard of reasonableness and prudence in the light of all of their circumstances, including some often quite erroneous imaginings about the nature of the particular disability. Created and applied from this disadvantage-point, the standard contains an inherent weakness which is not overcome by the occasional taking of testimony about the proper use of a cane or other aids and devices. The actions of the reasonably prudent man in like circumstances turn out to be not those taken by the reasonably prudent man actually in the circumstances, but those which a man not in those circumstances imagines he would take if he were in them. At the time of judgment, moreover, he is reasonably ignorant about what they are. In the sense intended by its author, the statement of Judge Hunt in Davenport v. Ruckman "that the blind have sources of knowledge not available to others"426 is mere superstition. But in another sense, the statement contains a basic truth: Experience with disability is a more ready source of knowledge about the disability to those who have it than to those who do not.The right to live in the world—to return to Dean Prosser's formulation of the problem and the proposition with which we began—entails at least a right of free and safe physical access to it through the use of streets and sidewalks, roads and highways, and the common modes of transportation, communication, and interchange. It includes as well full and equal access to places of public accommodation, places designed to accommodate men in the course of gaining access to the world.The right to live in the world consists in part of the right to live out of it. The blind, the deaf, the lame, and the otherwise physically disabled, have the same right to privacy that others do; not only the right to rent a home or an apartment, public or private housing, but the right to live in it; the right to determine their living arrangements, the conduct of their lives; the right to select their mates, raise their families, and receive due protection in the safe and secure exercise of these rights. Some of the Englishmen whose houses were their castles, one may suppose, were physically disabled. At least Coke never said aught to the contrary. It was the ligeantia, not the visual acuity, which counted.But the world in which the disabled, too, have a right to live is also on the streets, the highways and byways, in public buildings, and other public places, in the schools and colleges, in the public service and private callings, in the factories, shops and offices, in short, in all the places where men are, go, live, work, and play. The policy of the law, whether made by Congress or by the courts, whether carried out by executive or judicial action, whether implemented through the traditional formulas of the law of torts, the rhetoric of the policy of integration, or the human, natural, or inalienable rights of the Declaration of Independence, the Abolitionist Crusade, the thirteenth, fourteenth, and fifteenth amendments, and the civil rights revolution of today—the policy of the law should be by negative ban and positive fostering, to permit, enable and encourage men to be a part of their communities to the full extent of their physical capacities. The law of torts should link its labors to this conception.It is no right of substance, it is no policy of integration, if the disabled are not entitled to this. It is no world with fewer appurtenances and access more narrowly defined. Without that right, that policy, that world, it is no living.


§ 1—It is the policy of this State to encourage and enable the blind, the visually handicapped, and the otherwise physically disabled to participate fully in the social and economic life of the State and to engage in remunerative employment.

§ 2—(a) The blind, the visually handicapped, and the otherwise physically disabled have the same right as the able-bodied to the full and free use of the streets, higways, sidewalks, walkways, public buildings, public facilities, and other public places, (b) The blind, the visually handicapped, and the otherwise physically disabled are entitled to full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities, and privileges of all common carriers, airplanes, motor vehicles, railroad trains, motor buses, streetcars, boats or any other public conveyances or modes of transportation, hotels, lodging places, places of public accommodation, amusement or resort, and other places to which the general public is invited, subject only to the conditions and limitations established by law and applicable alike to all persons, (c) Every totally or partially blind person shall have the right to be accompanied by a guide dog, especially trained for the purpose, in any of the places listed in section 2(b) without being required to pay an extra charge for the guide dog; provided that he shall be liable for any damage done to the premises or facilities by such dog.

§ 3—The driver of a vehicle approaching a totally or partially blind pedestrian who is carrying a cane predominately white or metallic in color (with or without a red tip) or using a guide dog shall take all necessary precautions to avoid injury to such blind pedestrian, and any driver who fails to take such precautions shall be liable in damages for any injury caused such pedestrian; provided that a totally or partially blind pedestrian not carrying such a cane or using a guide dog in any of the places, accommodations or conveyances listed in section 2, shall have all of the rights and privileges conferred by law upon other persons, and the failure of a totally or partially blind pedestrian to carry such a cane or to use a guide dog in any such places, accommodations or conveyances shall not be held to constitute nor be evidence of contributory negligence.

§ 4—Any person or persons, firm or corporation, or the agent of any person or persons, firm or corporation who denies or interferes with admittance to or enjoyment of the public facilities enumerated in section 2 or otherwise interferes with the rights of a totally or partially blind or otherwise disabled person under section 2 shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

§ 5—Each year, the Governor shall take suitable public notice of October 15 as White Cane Safety Day. He shall issue a proclamation in which:

(a) he comments upon the significance of the white cane;
(b) he calls upon the citizens of the State to observe the provisions of the White Cane Law and to take precautions necessary to the safety of the disabled;
(c) he reminds the citizens of the State of the policies with respect to the disabled herein declared and urges the citizens to cooperate in giving effect to them;
(d) he emphasizes the need of the citizens to be aware of the presence of disabled persons in the community and to keep safe and functional for the disabled the streets, highways, sidewalks, walkways, public buildings, public facilities, other public places, places of public accommodation, amusement and resort, and other places to which the public is invited, and to offer assistance to disabled persons upon appropriate occasions.

§ 6—It is the policy of this State that the blind, the visually handicapped, and the otherwise physically disabled shall be employed in the State Service, the service of the political subdivisions of the State, in the public schools, and in all other employment supported in whole or in part by public funds on the same terms and conditions as the able-bodied, unless it is shown that the particular disability prevents the performance of the work involved.


412. Fleming, Torts 108 (3d ed. 1965); 2 Harper & James, Torts § 12.1 (1956); Friedmann, Law in a Changing Society ch. 5 (1959).
413. Friedmann, op. cit. supra note 412.
414. Ibid.; Fleming, op. cit. supra note 412, at ch. 6; 2 Harper & James, op. cit. supra note 412, ch. 11-13; Prosser, Torts ch. 1, 4 (3d ed. 1964). Beyond current forms of liability insurance and the social insurance lies loss insurance. Professor Friedmann writes: "Especially in the main countries which have introduced compulsory liability insurance for motor car operators, the effective shift of liability from the driver to the insurance company has increasingly raised the question whether liability insurance should not be openly turned into loss insurance. Loss insurance means an abandonment of the principle of individual tort responsibility and frank substitution of compulsory insurance for loss incurred as a result of certain operations. Administration replaces to that extent civil litigation and an element of social insurance is injected into this sphere of private relationships .... There is increasing support for the idea that the social importance of traffic accidents justifies the transfer of this complex of legal relationships from the private to the public sphere. Insurance against traffic accidents in that conception becomes assimilated to insurance against industrial accidents which has for many years been separated in all common law countries from general tort liability and turned into a social insurance." Friedmann, op. cit. supra note 412.
415. 79 Stat. 286, 42 U.S.C. 303, 1201, 1351 (Supp. I, 196S).
416. 79 Stat. 1282, 29 U.S.C. § 31-45 (Supp. I, 1965).
417. The Chavich Case—Outlook for Blind Teachers, The Braille Monitor, Aug. 1965, p. 49.
418. Cal. Educ. Code § 13125; Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 15, § 19a (Supp. 1965); N.Y. Educ. Law § 3004; Pa. Stat. Ann. tit. 24, § 12-1209 (1962).
419. Haley v. London Elec. Bd., [1965] A.C. 778 (1964).
420. See Balcom v. City of Independence, 178 Iowa 685, 696, 160 N.W. 308, 1310 (1916); Sleeper v. Sandown, 52 N.H. 244, 251 (1872) ; Shields v. Consol. Gas Co., 193 App. Div. 86, 183 N.Y. Supp. 240 (1920); Masterson v. Lennon, 115 Wash. 305, 308, 197 Pac. 38, 39 (1921).
421. 2 Harper & James, op. cit. supra note 412, at § 11.5; Prosser, op. cit. supra note 414, at § 4.
422. Professor Fleming writes that, in the era of the industrial revolution, "the axiom no liability without fault was quickly raised to a dogmatic postulate of justice, because it was best calculated to serve the interests of expanding industry and the rising middle class, in relieving them from the hampering burden of strict liability and conducing to that freedom of individual will and enterprise which was at the forefront of all contemporary aspirations." Fleming, op. cit. supra note 412, at 108.
423. Prosser, op. cit. supra note 414, at § 4.
424. Ibid.
425. 2 Harper & James, op. cit. supra note 412, § 11.5, at 793.
426. 37 N.Y. 568 (1868).

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