VOICE OF THE NATIONAL FEDERATION OF THE BLIND
The National Federation of the Blind is not an organization speaking for the blind-it is the blind speaking for themselves
Printed at 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708
THE BRAILLE MONITOR
Published monthly in braille and distributed free to the blind by the National Federation of the Blind. President: Kenneth Jernigan, 524 Fourth Street, Des Moines, Iowa, 50309.
Inkprint edition produced and distributed by the National Federation of the Blind.
EDITOR: Perry Sundquist, 4651 Mead Avenue, Sacramento, California, 95822.
Associate Editor: Hazel tenBroek, 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California, 94708.
News items should be sent to the Editor.
Address changes should be sent to 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California, 94708.
NFB OFFICERS AND BOARD MEMBERS
BLINDNESS---MILESTONES AND MILLSTONES
by Kenneth Jernigan
NFB STUDENT DIVISION---FULL SPEED AHEAD
CORRESPONDENTS COMMITTEE MEETING
by Xena E. Johnson
NFB SONG CONTEST
by Tom Bickford
NORTH DAKOTA CONVENTION
by Elsie Teigland
BLIND ADMINISTRATOR FOR HEALTH CENTER
BLIND MOTHER BUSINESS SUCCESS
by Mary Fitzgerald
THOUSANDS OF BLIND PEOPLE SEEK JOBS
by John Cunniff
NEW MEXICO CONVENTION
MEET MR. OSBORNE
by N. E. Robertson
COPYRIGHT REVISION BILL
IS THIS JUSTICE?
A DIFFERENT APPEAL LETTER
by Jesse Anderson
HELEN KELLER DIES
SHELTERED WORKSHOPS--FOR THE BLIND?
by Lorraine Arvidson
by Mabel Nading
JOB OPENINGS IN ZAMBIA
MESSAGE TO THE CONGRESS ON ARCHITECTURAL BARRIERS
AFFILIATE PRESIDENT "SEES" HUMOR IN DISABILITY
by Christy Cooke
PAKISTAN'S FIRST BLIND TEACHER
by Shahida Kazi
FIFTEEN YEARS OF SUCCESS
YODER DENIED REINSTATEMENT
by Joseph R. Daughen
LABELING OF BIRTH CONTROL PILLS WILL WARN OF POSSIBLE HAZARDS
SEX NOT BAR TO WELFARE
A QUESTIONNAIRE FROM ITALY
COMING STATE CONVENTIONSMONITOR MINIATURES
524 Fourth Street
Des Moines, Iowa 50309
|1st Vice President||Donald C. Capps
1829 Belmont Drive
Columbia, S. C. 29206
|2nd Vice President||Harold Reagan
219 Woodbine Street
Louisville, Kentucky 40208
4604 Briarwood Drive
Sacramento, Calif. 95821
207 Fisherville Road
Penacook, N. H. 03301
Dr. Mae Davidow
1105 N. 63rd Street
Philadelphia, Pa. 19151
2101 N. Pennsylvania St.
Indianapolis, Ind. 46202
3511 Berwyn Avenue
Baltimore, Md. 21234
Victor C. Johnson
705 S, Daviess Street
Gallatin, Missouri 64640
Apt. 6-B West
1029 Elm Street
Springfield, Mass. 01089
4651 Mead Avenue
Sacramento, Calif. 95822
Boise, Idaho 83706
524 Fourth Street
Des Moines, Iowa 50309
Supervisor, State Program for the Blind
Dr. Jacob Freid
48 E. 74th Street
New York, N. Y. 10021
National Service Agency for the Blind
808 15th Street N. E.
Mason City, Iowa 50401
Dr. Isabelle L. D. Grant
851 W. 40th Place
Los Angeles, Calif. 90037
1908 Que Street, N. W.
Washington, D.C. 20009
Back to Contents
Des Moines was great in '68! The greatest of all National Federation of the Blind conventions was held in Iowa's capital city from July 2 to 5, and the greatness of this convention consisted of three ingredients--people, program, and prizes.
First, and most importantly, the actual attendance at high points was close to 1,000 present on the convention floor.
Second, the program was studded with impressive speakers, provocative panels, and encouraging reports of the activities and progress of the organization during the past twelve months.
Finally, the prizes--oh, what prizes I There were two hundred thirty-eight prizes, ranging all the way from a $700 freezer-refrigerator, shipped anywhere in the United States, to innumerable radios, tape recorders, typewriters, and even a Maytag dryer. The estimated value of all of the prizes was in the neighborhood of $10,000.
The highlight of the convention was the reverent assembly held on the first day in memory of Dr. Jacobus tenBroek. Each person present was given a set of five records containing most of the memorable addresses delivered over the years by the late and greatly loved Founder and long-time President. This production of addresses has been quietly tied together by a summary of the highlights of the history of the NFB, narrated by Kenneth Jernigan. The assembly was concluded with Mr. Jernigan reading a few excerpts from the hundreds of letters of tribute sent in by Professor tenBroek's former students, and then delivering a moving address on "Jacobus tenBroek--The Man and the Movement". The convention voted to establish the Jacobus tenBroek Memorial Fund whose purpose will be to assist blind students to attend NFB conventions and to participate otherwise in the movement so that the crusade for which Chick tenBroek gave so much will be carried forward by young and vigorous hands and hearts. More than $5,000 has already been received as a nucleus for the Memorial Fund.
Among the many distinguished individuals who addressed the convention was Dr. Jacob Freid, a long-time member of the NFB's Board of Directors and Executive Director of the Jewish Braille Institute of America. Dr. Freid's thoughtful speech was entitled "The Indian Reservation--Black Ghetto Mentality of the Agency for the Blind in the United States and the NFB Blind Power Answer". Peter J. Salmon, Administrative Vice-President of the Industrial Home for the Blind in New York, made an eloquent plea for a new day for the deaf-blind and was fulsome in his praise of the support which the NFB has given and continues to give to the establishment of an institution as a national center for the deaf-blind.
A most stimulating address was presented by Mrs. Florence Grannis, Assistant Director, Library and Social Services for the Iowa Commission for the Blind on "Philosophical Implications of Book Selection for the Blind", a subject of perennial interest to blind readers for many years. Mrs. Grannis concluded her remarks with the following: "If independent blind people and groups of blind people will vocalize their reading desires and needs to the librarians we will have gone one step further. We can only arrive, however, when the attitudes about the blind and of the blind are transformed so that it is recognized that blindness is merely a characteristic like many another, that blind people cannot be stereotyped and that their hobby reading needs, vocational reading needs and recreational reading needs are just the needs of people." (The full text of Mrs. Grannis' speech will be published in a later issue of the Monitor.) Mary Jack Wintle, Book Selection and Public Relations Officer for the Division for the Blind and Physically Handicapped in the Library of Congress, did an able job of explaining the how and why of book selection by the Library of Congress and the anticipation of more realistic selections through the newly-appointed Regional Libraries Book Selection Committee of which Mrs. Grannis is chairman.
John Mungovan, Commissioner of the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind, spoke on "A Commission for the Blind Two Years After", and paid tribute to the assistance of the organized blind in securing the advantages of having state services for the blind placed in an independent agency. Dr. Thomas A. Benham of Science for the Blind not only discussed the tapes produced by his organization to acquaint the blind with what's going on in the world of science, but also stated that Science for the Blind is now engaged in producing instruments to help blind persons in their occupations or hobbies. He demonstrated the pilot model of a new electronic guidance device attached to a cane and making use of the laser beam. He explained that this device still has "bugs" to be ironed out but that it shows great promise. He said that advances in mobility for the blind have been such in the past fifteen years that what would have been adequate when the project started will no longer meet expectations in the field.
Rami Rabby presented some encouraging thoughts on business administration as a career for the blind. Totally blind since childhood, Mr. Rabby is peculiarly suited to discuss this subject in view of his background. Born in Israel and educated at Oxford, he worked for a year in the area of personnel management with the Ford Motor Company in England. He then came to this country where he is now working toward a Master's Degree in Business Administration at the University of Chicago. This summer he is working in personnel at the First National Bank of Chicago. Mr. Rabby stated that management is the newest of the professions and that there is an excess of demand over supply. He pointed out that to enter this profession a two-year study in a graduate school of business administration was necessary and that in the area of personnel management blind persons can find their greatest role.
Finally, Dr. Robert P. Langford, newly-appointed Executive Director of the Linn County Health Center in Iowa, and himself blind, told of his plans for the establishment of a comprehensive health center which will meet the needs of the community and may well become the forerunner of similar centers throughout the country.
Three separate panel discussions, each one featuring lively and fruitful exchanges among experts (as well as between the panel and the audience), provided conventioners with valuable information on such subjects as Iowa's Programs for the Blind, Social Security and the Blind, and Vending Stands--Their Present Status and Future Prospects.
The panel on Iowa's Programs for the Blind was chaired by Kenneth Jernigan, Director of the Iowa Commission for the Blind, and participated in by three Assistant Directors--John Taylor in charge of Field Operations, Mrs. Florence Grannis in charge of Library and Social Services, and Manuel Urena in charge of Orientation. Those attending the convention learned not only of the fabulous facilities of the Iowa Commission but got some understanding of why even more fabulous results have been achieved for the past ten years. As one enthusiastic delegate exclaimed: "I would rather be blind in Iowa than sighted in some parts of the country."
"Social Security and the Blind" dealt with such subjects as guaranteed annual income, disability benefits, trial work period, recent significant court decisions and new legislation. This panel was chaired by Perry Sundquist, Chief of the Division for the Blind in the California State Department of Social Welfare. Other panel members were Alvin M. David, Assistant Commissioner for Program Planning and Evaluation of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, and John Nagle, Chief of the Washington Office of the National Federation of the Blind.
The third panel, that dealing with the thorny subject of vending stands, evoked extremely active audience participation. It was most ably chaired by John Taylor of the Iowa Commission for the Blind. Other panel members were Herman Moore, Chief of the Contractual Services Branch of the General Services Administration; William F. Patterson, Director of Employee Benefits and Services in the Post Office Department's Bureau of Personnel (both of Washington, D.C.); and Dr. Fred L. Crawford, Executive Director of the South Carolina Commission for the Blind.
A climactic event of the convention was certainly the banquet. Seven hundred thirty persons attended, by far the largest in NFB history. Kenneth Jernigan delivered the address entitled "Blindness--Milestones and Millstones" (reprinted elsewhere in this issue of the Monitor.) The audience enthusiastically responded as Mr. Jernigan reviewed past accomplishments of the Federation and charted the course for the future. "With the death of our beloved President, Dr. tenBroek," he said, "we have lost a leader--but we have not lost direction. We mourn the passing of a man, but not the end of a movement." To a standing ovation, the address concluded with these words: "Let the word go out from this place and this moment that the torch has been passed to a new generation of blind Americans, a generation born in this century and fully belonging to it, a generation committed to the belief that all men (seeing or blind) are capable of independence and self-direction, of attaining equality and pursuing happiness in their own way, of serving each other and helping themselves--of walking alone and marching together."
John Taylor presided as Master of Ceremonies. Chief among the many honored guests in attendance was the Governor of Iowa, the Honorable Harold Hughes, whose v/itty remarks kept the large gathering in constant laughter. At the frequent Governors' Conferences he just has to be the Bob Hope of those conclaves. And yet, plainly showing in all of his quips, was his tremendous admiration for the Iowa Commission for the Blind and the organized blind movement and the great job which has been done. The prize of prizes, a $700 combination refrigerator-freezer was drawn by the Governor (Democrat) and was witnessed and read by Iowa's Secretary of State Melvin Synhorst (Republican). As luck would have it, the lucky winner was the only blind conventioner present from Orange City, Iowa, the former home town of the Secretary of State. There was a presentation of charters to our affiliates in Hawaii, Texas and Alabama. Seven scholarships were awarded, ranging from $200 to $400 each.
A solemn ceremony at the beginning of the banquet was the lighting of two candles by each of the seven hundred thirty persons present in silent tribute to our departed friend and leader, Jacobus tenBroek. Brief and moving words were spoken by John Taylor as the lights were dimmed. The redwood candleholders (made by students and graduates of the Iowa Orientation Center) were given to the banquet guests as a memento. Later in the banquet there was a tumultous ovation as Warren Toyama, President of the Hawaii affiliate, presented a large monkey-pod lazy susan to be given to Mrs. Jacobus tenBroek who was unable to be present at the convention. By their response to this gesture, the Federation members demonstrated their love and affection for the widow of the Federation's Founder.
A distinct feature of the convention was the allocation of a full half-day to the topic "The Federation in the States". California told of programs in crisis and the efforts being made to establish a commission for the blind. Idaho spoke of programs for the blind reorganized and their hopes for the future. South Carolina spoke of its great victory in the courts and the Legislature. New York told of defeat in the courts with the denial of the right of a blind man (Dr. Edwin Lewinson) to serve on a jury and the resulting Federation-financed appeal which is being made to the United States Supreme Court. Texas painted a hopeful picture of revitalization in its State. Hawaii discussed the prospects of our newest affiliate and the reorganization of State programs for the blind to come. New Hampshire told of shenanigans in its vending stand program and the Federation-financed court action which has been instituted as a result of the unjust ousting of Al Beckwith (New Hampshire Federation President) from his vending stand in the State Capitol at Concord. At another time in the program the Federation-financed court appeal of Evelyn Weckerly of Michigan was discussed. Although Miss Weckerly (totally blind) is a fully trained and experienced public school teacher (both certified and highly qualified), she has been denied tenure in the Muskegon schools, where she has successfully taught for the past two years. Thus, both successes and failures were featured--but all with the quiet determination that progress was on its way, inevitably, since neither the affiliates nor the Federation at the national level will ever give up in the common effort to achieve a better day for blind persons from Maine to Hawaii and from Florida to Alaska.
A recent and inspiring innovation in NFB conventions was highlighted this year by a description of the efforts of the Federation to assist the organized blind movement in other countries around the world, under the banner of the International Federation of the Blind. "The Federation in the World" was presented by Russell Kletzing, Treasurer of the IFB. Dr. Isabelle L. D. Grant told (in her inimitable way) of the conditions of the blind in Africa, seventeen countries of which she toured recently. Two distinguished foreign visitors were presented, both on official grants from the United States State Department to study (under sponsorship of the Federation) programs for the blind and organizations of the blind in this country. Miss Dolores Molina Munhoz talked of conditions affecting the blind in Brazil and Phillip Thomas Udofia made a similar presentation concerning the situation in Nigeria. The Federation convention was the beginning of a two-month itinerary throughout the nation. In addition, a sizeable Canadian delegation was present to describe the problems and accomplishments of our blind neighbors to the North.
Anthony Mannino, President of the California Council of the Blind and National White Cane Week Chairman, gave an encouraging report on the progress of this effort. A stimulating feature was the report of the NFB Endowment Fund, given by Lawrence Marcelino, Chairman, whose optimistic forecasts gave all a glimpse of the shape of things to come for the organized blind movement in the United States. With the announcement that the NFB Endowment Fund now contains more than $75,000 and will exceed $100,000 by the end of July of this year, the financial solidity and stability of the Federation was dramatically emphasized. This success is a testimonial not only to the good work of Mr. Marcelino and the entire membership of the Federation, but also to the past efforts of Gysbertus Veldhuizen of Wisconsin who served so capably for many years as Endowment Fund Chairman and who died during the past year. In his own quiet way "Bert" Veldhuizen was one of the most hard-working and ardent members of our organization, contributing both money and time to the cause. His widow attended the Des Moines convention and was warmly received.
Perry Sundquist reported for the Subcommittee on Budget and Finance, and the figures which he presented told of the Federation's climb financially and, hence, its ability to increase its activities in behalf of blind persons everywhere. Finally, John Nagle, Chief of the Washington Office, presented in his usual forceful manner the major legislative efforts of the Federation, emphasizing our continued and even renewed dedication to the effort to secure sweeping changes in the disability portions of the Social Security Act insofar as blind persons are concerned. He talked of the accomplishments and disappointments of the Federation in the 90th Congress and reported on such widely disparate matters as postal and copyright regulations and the new Amendments to the Rehabilitation Act and legislation on architectural barriers. Nagle discussed the National Eye Institute bill and the White Cane Safety Day Presidential Proclamation, fifteen hundred copies of which were distributed to the members for use in their States and local communities.
The elections are always a high point of the convention. This year was no exception. Kenneth Jernigan (Iowa) was unanimously and enthusiastically elected President of the National Federation of the Blind for a two-year term. Other officers elected were Donald C. Capps (South Carolina), First Vice President; Harold Reagan (Kentucky), Second Vice President; Russell Kletzing (California), Secretary; and Franklin VanVliet (New Hampshire), Treasurer. Dr. Mae Davidow (Pennsylvania), Uldine Thelander (Idaho), Manuel Urena (Iowa), and Ned Graham (Maryland) were elected to two-year terms on the Executive Committee. Perry Sundquist (California) was elected to fill the unexpired term created by the elevation of Harold Reagan to the Second Vice-Presidency. Dr. Jacob Freid and Dr. Isabelle L. D. Grant were re-elected to the full Board of Directors and a new member was added to the Board, James Gashel (Iowa), President of the National Federation of the Blind Student Division.
A revelation for all conventioners was the tour of the facilities of the Iowa Commission for the Blind, held on Wednesday, July 3, from 11:30 in the morning until six at night. They viewed not only a seven-story structure designed to carry out the Commission's many programs; its competent staff and an over-all program supported by more than a one-million dollar a year budget; they visited most of the 100,000 square feet of facility--the basement with its physical education area including an Olympic-size swimming pool and training shop equipped with many power tools; they went on up to the student recreation room, the home economics department, the home industries area, the largest library for the blind in the world, the student study rooms, the typing room, the spacious private rooms which each student enjoys, right up to the top of the roof with its picnic area and barbecue facilities (which were freely and greatly enjoyed).
Here is the ideal place where the over-all philosophy of the Iowa Commission for the Blind is translated into reality--that blind persons are essentially normal human beings and that blindness in and of itself is not a mental or psychological handicap; that each blind person should be judged according to his individual talents and capacities or shortcomings and weaknesses; that what the blind need is not sympathy but opportunity and that they should be expected to carry their full share of responsibilities and burdens. The programs witnessed are a living testimonial to the philosophy of the Federation in action.
The tour consisted of fun as well as work. There was swimming in the pool and there was browsing in the library. And there was also food--and what quantities! Over 1,000 ears of sweet corn were consumed as well as 500 hamburgers, 700 hot dogs, 780 ice cream cones, numerous gallons of potato salad and baked beans, 650 ham and cheese sandwiches, 2,100 cookies, and infinite quantities of coffee, iced tea, pop, and sundries.
Among the special meetings conducted in the course of the convention were separate gatherings of State White Cane Chairmen, of blind teachers, and of members of the Correspondents Committee representing the several State affiliates with the Editor of the Braille Monitor. In this connection, the Monitor Editor urged each State and local affiliate to send him at least one news item per month. He urged the members to keep the fact in mind that the Monitor cannot truly fulfill its function unless broad grass-roots participation is on-going and continuing. Each State and local affiliate was asked to appoint one person to scan local newspapers for items of interest and to emphasize the need for communication with the Monitor Editor.
An especially great deal of gratitude is owed by all who benefited from the efficiently-organized sessions and social activities to the entire membership of the Iowa affiliate (including the staff of the Iowa Commission for the Blind). That membership did a fantastic job to further the comfort of each delegate, including meeting all buses, trains and planes, whatever hour of the day or night they arrived.
Hospitality at the convention acquired a new meaning. The first major event was the reception held on Sunday afternoon in the suite of Neil Butler, the dynamic President of the Iowa affiliate. Festivities commenced early in the afternoon and continued until the wee hours. There was punch (gallons galore) and all of the trimmings. This was only a foretaste of the Wednesday night super soiree. Ralph Zarno's orchestra played to a packed house as the dancing and partying went forward. The refreshments, conversation and conviviality kept pace with the music, and the Fort Des Moines Hotel and the State of Iowa will probably never be the same again.
South Carolina will be the site of the 1969 convention and Minnesota the host to the 1970 convention. In a spirited contest which went right down to the wire, Texas won over New York as the site for the 1971 convention.
Des Moines was indeed great in '68!
The following resolutions (summarized here as to substance) were approved by the 1968 convention of the National Federation of the Blind. Copies of the full resolutions may be secured from the Berkeley Office by writing to 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708.
68-01. Supports the formation of the Regional Librarian Book Selection Committee by the Library of Congress' Division for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, and urges the participation of the blind themselves in book selection. It especially calls upon the Chief, Division of the Blind and Physically Handicapped, to seek the help and guidance of the organized blind movement at the local, state and national levels.
68-02. Reaffirms the NFB's commitment to combat prejudice and discrimination against the blind in all appropriate ways, including legislation, court action, negotiation, and public education, insofar as the NFB's resources will permit.
68-03. Seeks to end employment discrimination against the blind by private industries holding government contracts or otherwise governmentally subsidized.
68-05. Notes the lack of information available about the pricing of sheltered workshop products, and the problems involved; provides for the establishment of an NFB committee to study the problem.
68-06. Establishes the Dr. Jacobus tenBroek Memorial Fund, honoring the NFB's late, revered President through devoting the Fund's proceeds to seeking the active participation of students in the NFB.
68-07. Recognizes the importance of work experience to blind students through the Federal work-study program and requests action to change the apparent policy which makes aid recipients ineligible for such jobs.
68-08. Orders that legislation be sought to make United States Library service available to blind persons throughout the world.
68-09. Deplores the U. S. Postal Department and GSA policies which limit the income available to blind stand operators in their buildings through, respectively, "adequate income" provisions and fragmentation of locations among two or more operators; instructs officers and staff to do everything necessary to reverse such policies; and provides for widely publicizing the problem.
68-10. Provides that action be taken to have foreign aid funds in part earmarked for the assistance of the blind in countries receiving such funds.
Back to Contents
by Kenneth Jernigan
Twenty-eight is an awkward age in the life of a man or a movement. It is in between the more impressive signposts of a quarter-century and a full generation. But for members of the National Federation of the Blind, the number 28 is a landmark; and the year 1968 will be long remembered as a milestone.
This year is a time of mourning, and a time of dedication. It is a time to look back, not in anger but in sorrow; and it is a time to look forward, not in complacency but in confidence. It is a time for continuity, and a time for change.
With the death of our beloved president. Dr. tenBroek, we have lost a leader---but we have not lost direction. We mourn the passing of a man, but not the end of a movement. On the contrary: he has shown us the way; he has set our feet on the path; he has fired our minds and fueled our resolution. He has passed the torch to us: let us march with it, and hold it high.
In this year of decision, then, as we reassess our movement and our course, what major problems and challenges loom before us? What mountains must we now move? What rivers must we cross? What trails must we blaze?
Of all the stumbling-blocks which (as the Bible reminds us) are forever placed in the path of the blind, there is one which I believe to be more formidable and fundamental than any of the rest. Indeed, it is more than just a stumbling-block---it is the very cornerstone of the whole vast structure of laws and institutions, customs and practices, which have kept the blind from time immemorial in sheltered custody and confinement.
That cornerstone---which is also a millstone around the necks of those without sight---is the complex of social attitudes traditionally held toward blindness and the blind. It is these attitudes which are most damning and damaging to our hopes for opportunity and equality, for integration and independence. It is concepts---to be specific---such as this, taken from the letter of an insurance company official to an employer about to hire a trained and qualified machinist who happened to be blind:
"Duane, your letter states that there are two or three production jobs available for a person having this particular handicap. I think it is good that anyone would hire handicapped people---however, I think that extreme good judgment should be used in hiring a person who is totally blind, especially for a manufacturing plant.
"I cannot imagine that this person would be put on a job where there is machinery having moving parts where this person might possibly get their hands involved. Neither can I imagine them hiring a person and placing him on a job where he would have to walk through the plant, with the possibility of him running into machinery or stepping off into areas where he could be severely injured. However, a manufacturing plant has many areas which are hazardous. One important point of safety is to always be alert and watching for the unexpected. I would assume that this person would be guided when entering or leaving the plant so that he would not run into something."
What an exemplary attitude!---exemplary in its ignorance and blighting consequences. Today there are literally thousands of blind persons successfully at work on power machines of all types (by the way, did you ever see any machinery without moving parts?); and their safety record, as insurance men, above all, ought to know, is superior to that of their fellow-workers. And yet the old attitudes and assumptions---the damning image of the helpless blind man---drive all sense and reason from the head of this insurance executive, and threaten to drive a perfectly good machinist out of a job and very possibly out of a career.
It provides an illustration of a tendency, long familiar in welfare and charity work, to make moral and behavioral demands upon blind persons of a kind not imposed upon the general populace. Some years ago I asked a publisher of technical books for permission to have a volume of his transcribed into Braille for the use of a particular blind student. This is how his lawyer replied to me:
"We suggest that you give us the name of the blind student and her age, and let us know whether you consider her character and integrity to be above reproach. Assuming a favorable reply, we would prepare a letter of agreement for the blind student to sign, in which she would promise and agree to keep the work confidential to herself and her teacher, and not to sell it or reproduce it in any manner."
This is how I replied:
"The young lady in question is a blind person receiving services from our agency. Whether she will be able to become self-supporting may well depend upon the training and help we can give her and upon her background preparation to take advantage of opportunities when they become available. For these reasons we have felt it quite vital that we have the book in question in Braille for her. Even so, there are certain ethical principles which we feel we cannot violate. Personal information about this young lady is, and ought to be, strictly confidential. Whether she is a model of purity and virtue or an utter wretch has nothing to do, so far as we are concerned, with whether she ought to have the right to earn her daily bread. In fact, if one wants to be philosophical about the matter, there might be more justification for making her earn her own living if she were a 'bad' girl than if she were a 'good' girl. Therefore, your request that we give you information about her character seems singularly irrelevant."
It is attitudes such as this which dog our footsteps as we move out of the sheltered past, out of the long night of custodialism and dependency, into the future of equality. And attitudes like this---from the manager of a factory in Iowa, rejecting the request of students at the Iowa Orientation and Adjustment Center to make a tour of his mill:
"We are certainly sorry [he wrote] to hear that you feel you have been discriminated against by not being granted permission to tour the mill. Our only concern was for your safety, for which we would be solely responsible during the tour. We certainly would not want any individual in your group to risk the possibility of a fall or getting too close to any mill machinery. . . . The refusal of the tour perhaps sounded unfair to you, but if you will reconsider and put yourselves in our position, you know we would have been severely criticized if anyone in your group would have been injured during such a tour. We are sure that if your will give this matter fair reconsideration you will find no discrimination, only thoughtful consideration, on our part."
There is a fair and considerate attitude---courteous, helpful, wishing only to be of service. How often have blind persons been stopped cold in their progress by the classic phrase: "Our only concern was for your safety." Our milestones of progress have been reached despite such millstones of concern placed around our necks.
The answer to that attitude of the mill manager is twofold: first, blind student groups had actually toured his mill twice before, without a mishap; the presumption ought to be that they could tour it again with the same safety. Second, discrimination is almost never a matter of intention or motive; it is a matter of action and the consequences of action. If a drunk is refused admittance to a restaurant on the grounds of drunkenness, that does not constitute discrimination; for he meets the standard test of an un-desirable customer. If a blind man is refused admittance to a restaurant on the grounds of blindness, that does constitute discrimination; for blindness does not relate to any reasonable standard of discrimination. When the blind students of a training center---all of them, by the way, well- schooled in the use of machinery and in plant safety measures---are turned away at the door of the mill, it would serve the manager right if they staged a mill-in!
It might be added as a kind of happy ending to this episode, that all such discriminatory exclusions and rejections are hopefully at an end in Iowa--with the passage by the state legislature in 1967 of the model white cane law. Unfortunately, such attitudes of misconception and discrimination are not limited to the public at large.
The crippling and defeating assumptions which even today keep the blind down and keep them out are to be found, not one bit less frequently or less shockingly, among the very professionals upon whom falls the responsibility for the education of the blind and the enlightenment of the public.
An agency professional once raised with me the question of how best to give counsel to a mother with a newborn blind child. My response was that I might send a blind girl of college age, who had been without sight since childhood and who therefore could demonstrate to the woman that blindness is not the end of the road. Or, I said, I might send along a blind mother, with a child or two of her own, who could present a contrasting but equally successful case of adjustment.
To all this my agency friend shook his head in disagreement and disbelief. It wouldn't do, he said, to assign a blind person to the case whether a mother, a college girl, or any one else---because she would not be able to perceive the visual cues revealing whether the woman was embracing the blind child or giving it affection. In fact, he lectured me at some length concerning the tendency of parents to resent and reject their blind infants, and not pet or caress them. Therefore, he argued, a sighted professional was called for who could observe visually the facial expressions of resentment and rejection, and provide appropriate therapy for the mother.
My reply to this line of reasoning was that the surest way to create and reinforce such negative attitudes on the part of the parent would be to dispatch his type of professional worker, bent on discovering hostility and dispensing therapy at all costs. Where there is no hostility to begin with, such a worker is likely to create it---and where hostility already exists, she is likely to reinforce it. On the other hand, the well adjusted blind mother or college girl is a living demonstration of how to get along with blindness regarding it as a mere inconvenience, not as a tragedy. Such a blind person has many ways of observing the attitudes and behavior of the new mother; but more important, after a few hours with her, the mother is likely to see blindness in a new light and her normal maternal instincts will do the rest. In other words, the problem raised by my professional friend was not with the mother but with his own misconceptions about blindness.
Indeed, these false notions are to be detected among the very experts who took part in a workshop on "Attitudes and Blindness," a four-day seminar conducted expressly to educate the staff of the Office for the Blind of the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare---a meeting held not ten years ago, or five years ago, but in 1967.
Listen to the views of a rehabilitation specialist employed by the American Foundation for the Blind, as he explains to the assembled professionals what blind people are like:
"Many of the blind." he says, "look at the seeing as people from whom to get something. Just because they're sighted, they owe blind people something." Is that an accurate diagnosis of common attitudes among the blind? What is the basis for such a sweeping and belittling generalization? And what is likely to be the reaction of a newly hired sighted staff worker to this characterization of the blind people with whom he is preparing to work?
In this connection I would ask you to remember that this specialist is speaking to professional workers at a conference called for the express purpose of dealing with attitudes---attitudes of the blind toward the sighted and of the professional worker toward the blind client. There is hardly an effort made to disguise the condescension and contempt which he feels. The fact that this "specialist" happens to be blind himself does nothing to mitigate the tone of his remarks, and perhaps tells us more about his own personal inadequacies and cynical motivations than about the subject under discussion.
But let us hear him out. He goes on to state that one of the best examples of exploitation of the sighted by the blind "is using them purely for their vision in volunteer activities serving the blind. I know of one organization," he says, "where blind people join as regular, full participating members. But there is another class of membership known as associate membership; this classification is set up only for sighted people. Associate members do not have the right to vote, do not have the right to hold office (except for the Office of Treasurer, of course, which requires sight)---blind treasurers, take note!---and may not serve on committees except the entertainment, hospitality and refreshment committees, I'm afraid this attitude even pervades the individual thinking of some blind people to a great degree," he says, as he quotes the thinking of an imaginary blind person thus: "You'd better be just nice enough to them so that you can use them when you want to use them, and deal with them when you want to deal with them, and call on them when you can get something from them for nothing." Our rehab specialist then concludes: "I've seen this attitude over the years, and I've not seen it change much."
The first response one is tempted to make is: if that is the attitude he has seen over the years, he must truly be blind---blind to the presence of other and better relationships, of other and better motives. But there is more to it than that. The speaker is also attacking organizations of the blind---such as the National Federation of the Blind and the state affiliates---attacking them on the one hand as exclusive and on the other hand as exploitive. To be more blunt about it, he is saying that we are prejudiced and discriminatory: we judge ourselves to be superior to the poor nonblind population, and let them into our society only as second-class citizens, unable to vote or hold office. Then we compound the felony by treating them as a minority class of servants and social inferiors, fit only to perform the menial chores of washing up, dishing out the food, and keeping the books. What a picture of snobbery, condescension, and exploitation---and also, what a falsehood!
We are, to be sure, organizations of the blind not organizations of workers for the blind, or friends of the blind, or of persons charitably-disposed toward the blind. Our chief distinction and reason for being is that we are blind people who have come together to solve common problems, to make our own decisions and to speak for ourselves. It follows that while we are happy to have seeing people join with us, we would surely abandon our distinctive identity if we should turn authority and decision-making over to them.
Therefore, just as other clubs and lodges have their auxiliaries, so our federations of the blind make a place for interested persons who are not blind. To make something prejudicial out of this let alone to concoct a sinister declaration of hostility and contempt toward the seeing is simply nonsense. Again, one wonders what effect this kind of attribution of motives to blind people must have upon the agency staff worker who is preparing to work with the blind.
But let us move on. We have not yet done with this distinguished "specialist" from the American Foundation for the Blind, whose contribution to the workshop discussion on attitudes is much too rich with meaning to put aside lightly. Listen to this:
"Conversely," he says, "there are blind people who look at sighted people as competitors. 'I, as a blind person,' they say, 'must compete with this individual, not because of any spirit of sportmanship, or not because of any drive to improve my personal position, but to prove myself as a blind person. I must prove not only that I can do it, but that I can do it better.'" He goes on: "A friend of mine out in the mid-West, totally blind, lives in a very lovely community on a rather large tract of land, and every morning, winter or summer, he goes out and runs around the block, just to prove to his neighbors that he is physically fit. This same individual also has a bicycle, and he rides this around the yard, particularly when his neighbors are coming home from work. He's got to prove himself."
What an aggressive ogre is that midwestern blind man, sitting there on his tract of land, morning after evening, winter and summer, waiting for his neighbors to come out so that he can ride his bicycle noisily about the yard, or perhaps trot around the block a few times "just to prove that he is physically fit." In order to get at the true character of this analysis of motives, let us suppose a different scene. Let us suppose that the midwestern blind man does not ride a bicycle at all, or run around the block, or do any other outdoor exercise---but simply sits quietly inside his house, encountering no one except his professional friend from the east. What then would be the analysis? May it not be that this would strike our expert on attitudes as a sad situation indeed? Can you not hear him, or someone like him, lamenting the "social isolation" and morbid withdrawal of this poor fellow?
No?---Then consider this piece of jargon: "There are innumerable things one could say about the isolating factors which directly arise from blindness and what can be done about them. First, to a blind person the social use of the eye is impossible. . . . But we believe nonetheless that we have some of the essentials to prevent isolation. One of the most important is the impetus we have lately given to mobility training. It has been estimated that 90 per cent of the blind population is essentially immobile. That alone tells us how isolating blindness can be."
That is not the same rehabilitation specialist I have been quoting; but it is one very much like him. It is the voice of the Chief of Services to the Blind of the Federal Vocational Rehabilitation Administration. And the gist of his commentary is that the common condition of the blind is that of social isolation---from which they can to some extent be rescued by means of increased mobility: such as, getting out into the world, riding bicycles, and going around the block.
This flat contradiction between the testimony of two eminent experts in rehabilitation of the blind is a good example of what we might call the "false dilemma" logic all too often encountered in this field. To put it bluntly: the blind are damned if they do, and damned if they don't. In the present instance, our midwestern blind man finds himself damned by one specialist if he stays indoors in "social isolation"---and damned by another if he ventures outside for a bit of healthy exercise---which somehow gets converted into unhealthy exhibitionism.
That point, by the way, is worth considering for a moment. If a blind man takes to running around the block, or riding a bicycle, or doing any of the little behavioral things that normal people do all the time, must he be doing them for some deep, dark impulse of competition, or of "proving himself"---rather than just improving himself? Why is it that other people's behavior can be taken at face value, but the behavior of blind persons cannot---even where it is the same? Instead, it must be subjected to intricate investigation in psychiatric depth. Does not this devious and suspicious approach to the attitudes and motives of the blind reveal much about the attitudes of the investigators themselves? Does it not betray a remarkable lack of faith in the rationality, responsibility, and simple normality of their blind clients? Much is made of the fact that the blind mid-westerner waits to ride his bicycle until his neighbors come home from work. It apparently never occurs to the rehabilitation expert that the reason for this timing might be that the blind man also works and so returns home at about the same time as others in the neighborhood. One is tempted to exclaim: counselor, heal thine own attitudes!
Before leaving this very informative workshop conference of rehabilitation experts, let us turn to another illustration of the point we are making. Here is another expert from the federal vocational rehabilitation administration, remarking on the curious and morbid characteristic of many blind persons that they like to get together with others who are blind. "The more the individual has a sense of inferiority as a blind person," he says, "the more he is likely to enjoy the company of other people purely and simply because they are blind. I do not mean that there is anything wrong with two blind people enjoying each other's company, but the tendency to group together, in clubs or organizations, in social groups, is partially based on the desire for equality."
In other words, there is nothing wrong with this socializing and organizing on the part of the blind people; but on the other hand, there is. If we look closely at it, all kinds of subterranean and vaguely disreputable motives become apparent; it is all a matter of inferiority, or some sort of urge to be equal when one is not, or something else discovered by Freud or by Freudian social workers. It cannot be because blind persons are people, and people like each other's company. It cannot be because blind persons wish to join hands to solve common problems, and find voluntary association the natural and democratic way of going about it. No! These are the normal, healthy and obvious motives of ordinary people; they will not do for a professional analysis of the sub-ordinary and subordinate.
So much for that publication on attitudes about blindness, the result of a conference of specialists on rehabilitation. Let us consider another publication circulated by a different group of specialists getting ready to hold a rehabilitation conference of their own. What we have here is a questionnaire sent out across the country to instructors working in orientation and training centers for the blind, who were invited to participate in a three-day national workshop on personal management services, under the sponsorship of the American Foundation for the Blind with the collaboration of the federal Department of Health, Education and Welfare. The questionnaire asked each instructor to state whether he had or had not developed "a specific organized method or technique" for the teaching of grooming and living activities to blind people---and, furthermore, whether the instructor found it necessary "to frequently make changes," or only to "rarely make changes," in these specific organized techniques. Now, here are some of the activities for which it was expected that instructors would have specific organized techniques and methods: brushing hair, combing hair, tying shoes, lacing shoes, tying necktie, putting dentifrice on brush, brushing teeth, tweezing eyebrows, bathing with soap, using deodorants, shaking hands, asking for help, refusing help, using the telephone---and, under the heading "Art of Attraction," flirting and dating. (One is forced to wonder what "specific organized method or technique" the agency professionals reported in that field of personal activity!)
What is to be thought of this high-level national conference of rehabilitation experts and its preoccupation with such earthshaking matters as these? Surely the first thought that comes to one's mind is: have they nothing more serious to do? Is this the kind of problem that should be occupying the collective attention of the nation's specialists on blindness---problems like how (in a specific organized way) to put the toothpaste on the brush, the necktie on the neck, the soap on the body, or the shoe on the foot? Perhaps the shoe should be on the other foot; perhaps blind people ought to get together in a conference of their own and work out specific organized techniques or methods for instructing specialists in rehabilitation on such urgent matters of personal hygiene as clearing cobwebs from the mind, stringing serious thoughts together, and (under the heading of "Mental Attraction") flirting with new ideas!
What a commentary on the attitudes toward the blind held by the very people assigned to improving and educating the attitudes of the blind. Certainly if a blind person is defective mentally, or disturbed emotionally, or handicapped multiply, there may be need for attention to such elementary and superficial learning tasks. But if not, then not! How many real and serious problems of social relationship and participation go untreated and unattended while these people play their frivolous and superfluous games.
We could go on---and on and on---with still more examples of demeaning and destructive attitudes on the part of professional workers and administrators in the vineyards of blind welfare and rehabilitation. Their name is legion; their sins are manifest; their mischief is widespread. But there is one more thing to say about them: they no longer hold the field alone. Their attitudes, their teachings, their prejudices, their arrogance---all are being challenged by a new generation of professionals, a new spirit among the blind, a new understanding on the part of the public at large, and a new philosophy of rehabilitation.
The name of the new professionals is not 'workers for the blind' but 'workers with the blind.' Many of them, in steadily growing numbers, are blind themselves. But, blind or sighted, they base their entire approach on an assumption of responsibility and an attitude of respect toward the people with whom they work. Their injunction to the blind trainee or client is not "you cannot do it" but "do it!" Their doctrine, to borrow from the field of economics, is that of laissez-faire---let the blind person be---let him become---let him go!
One of the basic principles of a democracy is the notion that the balance of power shall be held by the non-professional, by the public at large. In this connection, the blind are fortunate for the professionals in the field (weighed down by vested interest and accumulated doctrine) who have often been slower to accept the new ideas than the well-informed man-in-the- street. When faced with the evidence of blind people living and working as normal human beings, the average citizen has usually been able to accept the fact for what it is without looking for hidden meanings or Freudian explanations. The professionals are sometimes not so flexible in their thinking.
The very symbol and substance of the new ideas, and the challenge to the old attitudes, can be found in the organized blind movement. We are determined to speak for ourselves, and with our own voice. The time is now, and the responsibility is ours. No one will give it to us. We must take it for ourselves. And take it we will!
In this time of transition, in this changing of the guard in the affairs of the blind, we might articulate our prospect and our vision by paraphrasing some words from the inaugural address of a recent President of the United States:
Let the word go out from this place and this moment that the torch has been passed to a new generation of blind Americans, a generation born in this century and fully belonging to it, a generation committed to the belief that all men (seeing or blind) are capable of independence and self-direction, of attaining equality and pursuing happiness in their own way, of serving each other and helping themselves---of walking alone and marching together.
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A dominant note at the Des Moines convention was the emphasis on youth and the importance of students in our movement. Of the approximately 1,000 people in attendance, well over 100 were students. The vigor and enthusiasm of this lively contingent were all pervasive.
The pattern of the future was clear as the Student Division held its business meeting on Monday evening, July 1. From the reports given by President Jim Gashel and others, it was apparent that the last year had been an active one. It was announced that Student Division membership had risen from 35 to 122 (this with the convention only just getting under way).
Judy Young, Student Division Treasurer, described the process of preparation and distribution of The Student Handbook, a project which she directed earlier this year. She led a brief discussion on the content of the pamphlet and plans for similar projects in the future.
Other items on the agenda were: book projects for the overseas blind, Peace Corps training for the blind, and problems encountered by blind college students with rehabilitation and university officials. It was unanimously voted to conduct an extensive survey concerning inadequate reader service and other restrictions being faced by blind college students throughout the country.
With the resignation of Ramona Willoughby, it was necessary to elect a new secretary. The office went to Rami Rabby of Chicago, Illinois. Other officers are: President, James Gashel, Cedar Falls, Iowa; First Vice-President, Roger Petersen, Chestertown, Maryland; Second Vice-President, Chuck Walhof, Boise, Idaho; and Treasurer, Judy Young, Des Moines, Iowa.
This was the Monday night business meeting, and the students kept up the pace throughout the week. The convention adjourned at five o'clock on Friday afternoon, July 5, and most of the weary delegates headed for home. Not so the students! They gathered at the Iowa Commission for the Blind building the following morning for a one day seminar. Over 100 were present, including not only students but a number of professors and state affiliate presidents.
The morning session got under way with an address by Jim Gashel, who stressed the extreme importance of advancing the student movement by organizing local chapters. He warned, however, against losing sight of the central purpose---to strengthen the NFB as a whole. He said that "close communications between the student chapters and the national officers of the Student Division and of the NFB is critical at this stage of development.” He stressed the impetus given to the movement with the establishment by the Federation of the "Jacobus tenBroek Memorial Fund" to encourage students to be active in the NFB.
The next item on the morning agenda was a panel consisting of persons who had encountered restrictive and discriminatory treatment by universities, prospective employers, and agencies doing work with the blind. Judy Young described her battle for the right to do student teaching. She told in vivid terms how her acceptance into the University of Iowa College of Education was delayed while school officials tried to persuade her to enter another field. She told of the forceful action by the organized blind movement, which finally resulted in success.
Gary Patterson, a blind student from Texas, shocked the audience by detailing a number of restrictions imposed on blind students by the Commission for the Blind in his state. He mentioned that most students are not provided with a tape recorder or Braillewriter and that students are allowed only enough reader funds to cover twelve semester hours. He stated that students who wished to take a heavier load often pay for the additional reading time out of their own pockets. The average college student, of course, carries at least sixteen or seventeen hours per semester. Otherwise, he does not graduate in the normal four year time.
Ramona Willoughby, another member of the panel, told of her experiences in a foreign language training program for the blind set up by the Department of Health, Education and Welfare in cooperation with Georgetown University. She said there were sub-standard expectations by those responsible for grading the program and by the professors who conducted the actual instruction. She said that courses were geared to the abilities of the slowest members of the class and that no instruction was given in writing the language because the professors "did not know Braille," She said that she felt the people responsible for the creation and operation of the program did not really "believe that blind persons could be as successful as the sighted."
Bob Acosta, a panelist from California, described his hard fought and highly successful battle with the Los Angeles schools. The school health officer attempted to bar his entrance into the teaching profession in Los Angeles, but the organized blind and the American Federation of Teachers united behind him, with the result that the battle was won.
Susan Ford, from Bozeman, Montana, talked of her difficulties in getting permission to do student teaching, both in Iowa and Montana. She indicated that, in both instances, she was asked unimportant and irrelevant questions by college officials---how she would tell whether the lights were on, etc.
This stimulating panel was chaired by Kenneth Hopkins, Director of the Idaho Commission for the Blind. His skill in picking out important concepts was evident from the beginning.
The afternoon session opened with a panel on organizations of blind students. Participants were Jan Allen of California, Chuck Walhof of Idaho, Roger Petersen of Maryland, and Loren Schmitt and Manuel Urena of Iowa, and Mike Yale of Toronto, Canada. Each panel member either is now or at one time has been the president of a student organization. The discussion was chaired by Raymond Halverson, former President of the Iowa student group. The discussion ranged from how to interest students in the Federation to the question of goals and purposes.
The final item on the afternoon program was a discussion chaired by NFB President, Kenneth Jernigan. The students exchanges and the participation from the floor made this one of the liveliest parts of the program. It was a fitting climax to the program and the day.
Although the rain prevented the "evening cookout" which had been planned for the patio area on the roof, the students staged an "eat-in" in the Commission gym. There were hamburgers, home made ice cream, and all the trimmings. If anyone doubts that the Student Division is now a force in the field of work with the blind and in the organized blind movement (and that it will steadily become more so), he did not attend the student seminar. The enthusiasm and verve of the students and the reaction of the membership of the Federation to this mood were, perhaps, among the most hopeful developments at the convention.
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by Xena E. Johnson
Mr. Perry Sundquist, Editor of the BRAILLE MONITOR, presided at a most interesting and informative meeting of the Correspondents Committee held on July 1, 1968 in Des Moines. The following states were represented: Ohio, Colorado, Nevada, Michigan, Iowa, West Virginia, Indiana, New York, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Maine, New Jersey, Idaho, District of Columbia, Utah, and Missouri.
Editor Sundquist opened the meeting by stating that the BRAILLE MONITOR is the mouthpiece of the National Federation of the Blind and strives to present what blind persons feel and think from all over the country. To achieve this goal it must receive monthly reports from the various state and local affiliates.
The Editor then asked those present to state what, in their judgment, are the kinds of articles or items preferred by a majority of blind persons in their states. Following is the list of suggestions:
1. Monitor Miniatures are very popular and should be expanded;
2. Success stories of blind persons;
3. Educational articles about the activities of the blind world-wide;
4. Reports of forthcoming conventions as far in advance as possible; reports of the activities at all state conventions, particularly actions proposed and taken, as well as social activities at these gatherings;
5. Information of particular interest to the blind on such subjects as postal regulations, transportation concessions, and other matters pertinent to the blind and not otherwise published;
6. Court cases of significance, reported in simple language which can be easily understood by the layman;
7. Problems affecting the blind with respect to discrimination of any kind--many times the experiences of others may be helpful or the NFB may be able to correct them;
8. Persons like articles telling about the work of the Chief of the Washington Office;
9. Perhaps a short, short review of articles of significance to the blind or new books released would be worthwhile;
10. It would be helpful to have summaries of testimony given by John Nagle or others on NFB legislation and also summaries of significant Supreme Court decisions. John Nagle stated that he always presents testimony in Braille and has inkprint transcripts made of his testimony and presented to each member of the congressional committee, and often gets only a formal reply indicating that a few have read it but the effort generally pays off by those few who take time to read the testimony and do heed such effort.
John would like members of the NFB who send letters to members of the Congress and receive replies to send him copies of those replies if they show that the Congressman or Senator has shown a personal interest, but not to send him purely form-type replies. John stated that about March of each year, or as soon as he can get NFB legislation introduced and identified, he writes a comprehensive review of all proposed legislation which will be before the Congress for the two-year session, and that at the conclusion of a session he will also prepare another comprehensive report showing what happened to all such legislation.
11. It was suggested that each State and local affiliate appoint some person with sight to read all local newspapers and clip articles concerning anything about the blind, being sure to give the name of the newspaper and the date and any "by-line" and send to the Editor of the BRAILLE MONITOR;
12. Articles are needed on "how to do it", particularly with respect to suggestions for state legislation;
13. It was recommended that every affiliate send a copy of THE MONITOR to all new members, after finding out if they wish Braille, inkprint or tapes. Names and addresses to be added to THE MONITOR list should be sent to the Berkeley Office, NFB, 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708. For all other matters pertaining to the MONITOR, address the Editor, 4651 Mead Avenue, Sacramento, California 95822. This would include correspondence, news items, clippings, etc.
14. It was suggested that there be a section from time to time dealing with the International Federation of the Blind--personals, legislation, needs, etc.;
15. A section should be developed on student activities;
16. John Nagle stated that as he went around the country he was impressed by the fact that blind persons wanted material on two things--how to raise money, and how to get new members;
17. The use of some photographs in the inkprint edition is good, but not to excess;
The Editor reported that the last edition of the MONITOR had 2,325 inkprint copies, 1,375 Braille copies, and 206 tapes. He asked for "Letters to the Editor" giving reactions to material in the MONITOR.
The meeting adjourned with the feeling that much good had been accomplished and all interested parties pledged the new Editor support. One final thought: Your magazine can only be as good as you make it, so please cooperate fully by sending in pertinent material to the Editor.
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by Tom Bickford
At our 1968 convention the delegates voted to establish a committee to collect and evaluate songs, one of which will be selected in 1969 as the official song of the NFB. A contest open to all Federationists who wish to submit a song is now under way. Words and music may both be original, or new words may be set to a known tune. Songs will be judged for their appropriateness. The writer of the song finally selected by the convention in 1969 will be awarded $25. All entries must be submitted by February 1, 1969.
When submitting songs, please record music and words on tape and enclose a written copy of the words. Entries may be submitted to any of the committee members listed below:
Tom Bickford, Chairman, 2714 Ordway Street, N.W., Apt. 1, Washington, D.C. 20008
Myrna Schmidt, 1615 Schuyler Street, Schenectady, New York 12303
James Tanner, 2809 Lafayette Street, Waterloo, Iowa 50703
Harold E. Carter, 3939 First Street, Des Moines, Iowa 50313
Evelyn Weckerly, 3711 Henry Street, Apt. 113, Muskegon, Michigan 49441
Mrs. Marion McDonald, 17 West Cedar, Alexandria, Va. 22301
Mrs. Billie Ruth Schlank, 4015 Bunker Hill Road, Brentwood, Maryland
Ned Graham, 3511 Berwyn Avenue, Baltimore, Maryland 21207.
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by Elsie Teigland
The Federated Blind of North Dakota met in annual convention at the Gardner Hotel in Fargo, North Dakota. Registration began Friday night, June 7th, and the convention was called to order the next morning and continued until the afternoon of June 9th.
Officers elected were; president, L. E. Gotto; 1st vice president, George Ryan; 2nd vice president, A. L. Strom: all of Fargo, North Dakota. Dr. Curtis Saunders of Devils Lake, was chosen as delegate to the national convention, with A. L. Strom of Fargo, alternate.
Speakers at the North Dakota convention were: a home teacher and counselor of the Vocational Rehabilitation of North Dakota, who also demonstrated a new IBM electric typewriter which writes Braille; a representative of the local Social Security office; and the president of the Fargo-Moorhead Trades and Labor Unions. Greetings were also brought by Mrs. Mary Ellen Anderson, orientation teacher from the Iowa Commission for the Blind, and three students from the Iowa school. The main convention and banquet speaker was Dr. Manuel Urena of the Iowa Commission for the Blind. Entertainment at the banquet Saturday evening was furnished by a group of fourteen school children from Argusville, North Dakota, under the direction of their teacher, Mrs. Gilbert Gangnes.
A memorial service for the beloved founder of the National Federation, Dr. Jacobus tenBroek, was conducted Sunday afternoon by Miss Grace Peterson, with the eulogy given by A. L. Strom.
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The first administrator for the Linn County Health Center, to be located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is Robert Langford, who is blind. Langford has been serving as Executive Director of the Rehabilitation Center of Worcester, Massachusetts. The thirty-eight year old Langford received his Ph.D. from New York University in vocational rehabilitation administration recently. Langford's duties will be to formulate a program for comprehensive health services for the county and the eventual construction of facilities.
The Worcester Center provided services for over 2,000 persons last year, under Langford's direction, with more than two hundred physicians referring patients. The professional staff of twenty-five includes physicians and physical, occupational, speech and inhalation therapists. Under Langford's direction new programs were developed, including a rehabilitation adjustment center and contract workshop, social service, recreation and casework programs and a prevention-of-blindness and sight-saving program.
Langford sees his task in his new post as seeking methods and ways in which health services can be provided more effectively and conveniently for citizens of Linn County.
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[Editor's Note: The following feature article was written by Mary Fitzgerald for the Lawrence (Massachusetts) Eagle-Tribune.]
On many counts, Bernice Hamer qualifies as a valiant woman.
Her first encounter with adversity came when she was nine. Up until that time, Bernice Zagunis, a native of Worcester, had had a normal childhood. But, while playing ball one day, she was hit in the face. The force of the blow injured a nerve. A cataract grew over one eye, then the other.
By the time she was a teenager, she had lost most of her sight. Then a dramatic operation on both eyes restored her vision to 22/100.
It was almost as difficult for the young girl to adjust to having sight again. But even this limited vision lasted only a few years. Then she contracted a chronic eye disease. It became progressively worse. Gradually both eyes were affected. Her vision was reduced to 4/200. Bernice Zagunis was blind again. Ironically enough, surgery could improve her vision again as it did once before, but with the infection, no one was willing to chance the operation.
Bernice Zagunis adjusted to being unsighted. She enrolled at the Perkins Institute for the Blind. There she met Norman Hamer. Like her, Norman Hamer had been born with sight. At seventeen, a detached retina resulted in his blindness. They were graduated from Perkins the same year, 1945.
Bernice got a job at Shepherd Envelope Company, Worcester. Norman tried to launch an answering service in Lawrence. In 1949, Bernice came to work with him in the office on Essex Street. The following year, the two were married.
Soon they discovered that they were married not only to each other but also to their new business. It was a twenty-four hour responsibility. The service was new to them. Bernice had run a switchboard at Perkins, but it was nothing like running an answering service. Besides that, they were pioneering it as a career for the unsighted. They had to play it by ear day after day.
At first they did not know that they could run a regular switchboard. But they both had enough light perception to see the standard switchboard light up and could answer the calls. Gradually they built up the service. All paper work was done in Braille.
By dint of hard work and dogged perseverance, Norman and Bernice Hamer built the Business and Professional Men's Exchange into a going business.
What had started out originally as a favor to a funeral director grew to include among its clients doctors, dentists, lawyers, other funeral directors, real estate men, oil dealers, electricians, plumbers, stenographers, photographers, piano tuners, banks and sign painters.
The enormity of their accomplishment is visible in the fact that until 1962 all files were kept in Braille. Over the years the Hamers developed their own quick way of writing Braille, a sort of modified shorthand. By then the business had grown so large that the Hamers had to emply sighted operators to handle the volume of calls. Use of Braille was discontinued.
But it was still the prime responsibility of the founders to see that the service was adequately covered on a twenty-four hour basis. It still required long hours from each of them. However, they endeavored to share their success with other blind. They helped start similar ventures for the unsighted in Waltham and Providence, Rhode Island.
Norman Hamer was active in the Associated Blind of Massachusetts, Inc. Both were prominent in the Greater Lawrence Association of the Blind.
In 1960 Bernice Hamer gave birth to their son, Alan Lee. Her handicap made her more fearful of caring for a baby than an ordinary mother.
When Norman died, he was vice-president of the Associated Blind of Massachusetts, the coming president. Bernice carried on for him. She became first vice-president, grew active in the group, and was named to the governor's commission for the blind.
In 1965 at the convention of the National Federation of the Blind, Bernice Hamer gave an address on "Telephone Answering Is No Blind Alley". She stressed that there is no discrimination through the telephone; there, you are what your ability is.
Today the answering service Bernice and Norman Hamer founded employs thirty people. Four switchboards are manned constantly. Each operator spends two weeks with a supervisor to learn the basics. Each becomes a specialist in one category of clientele.
Essentially the service works like this. An extension runs from a client's phone to the exchange switchboard. Each call rings both in the office and at the exchange. If the client is not in his office, the exchange operator answers in his name, takes the call, check's the client's wish regarding callbacks, and files the message in his section above the board. When the client checks in he is given a complete rundown. The listing is then returned to his file in case of later need.
The personal touch is what puts over an answering service. A mechanical device can neither respond to the caller personally nor answer questions.
Bernice Hamer no longer mans a switchboard. Today, her role is more that of a principal in a school. She has no direct relationship with the clients except during the Open House she holds at regular intervals so clients can meet the operators they talk with so often. She is now a successful business woman in her own right. The road to success has not been easy for her. For this reason, she had dedicated herself to giving to others sharing her handicap, help from her own experiences.
As a mother, as a career woman, as a leader of the unsighted, Bernice Hamer is living proof that a personal handicap can still be mastered by courage and determination.
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Special Employment Opportunity
Potential For Earning From Home
A large Miami Beach hotel wants representatives in the larger northern and midwestern cities of the United States and in Canada for example: Montreal, Toronto, Buffalo, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Chicago, Detroit, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Kansas City, St. Louis and others.
You would receive telephone inquiries from potential guests of the hotel. You would 1. give them information, 2. take names and arrange for the hotel to mail literature and/or you would make conditional reservations confirming dates with the hotel.
The hotel promises 1. to pay telephone expense, 2. pay mailing expense and 3. to pay you 10% of the guest's bill.
Why Would Guests Telephone You
Well, the hotel will place ads in your local newspapers and make selective mailings to your area. In each they would list your special telephone number.
Special Details to Consider
No cash investment is required, but there is no guarantee of income. Your investment is time. The hotel invests money. Hopefully, you would both make money.
File Your Application This Way
Act immediately if you would like to be an information representative for the hotel. State your qualifications briefly and mail them to Dade's Employ The Handicapped Committee, 1351 N. W. 12th Street, Miami, Florida 33125.
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by John Cunniff
[From the St. Joseph, Missouri News-Press, July 17, 1968]
[Editor's Note: The Associated Press has just released the following story as the MONITOR goes to press. Of the 425,000 blind persons in the United States, only 11,000 have regular employment. If we assume that only one-fourth of the total blind population of the country is in the age range for employment, this still means a fantastically high unemployment rate of around 90 per cent for the blind, compared to the rate for the country as a whole of between 4 and 5 per cent.]
NEW YORK (AP)--While job programs are devised almost daily to correct economic inequities, a poor but eager group that seeks only an opportunity sometimes must feel out of tune with the times.
These are the nation's 425,000 legally blind citizens, only 11,000 of whom have regular jobs, many of them paying close to the minimum wage. Although many blind people cannot work, thousands can work but can't find jobs.
Those that are employed often work in factories especially designed for the blind. And though blind workers have proved their skills in exacting factory jobs, their livelihood often is based in dustcloths and brooms and such.
"If our shops closed tomorrow," said Robert Goodpasture, executive vice president of the National Industries for the Blind, "about 99 percent of our workers would be unemployed."
The NIB, a nonprofit affiliation of seventy-eight factories for the blind in seventy-five cities, attempts to upgrade the nature of blue collar work for the blind, research new products the blind might make, and coordinate buying and marketing of products.
If Goodpasture sounds a bit annoyed it might be because of the size of the job. "We need work, "he said. "We have 5,000 jobs but we need 16,000 in five years." Eventually, he adds, "at least 25,000 should have blue collar employment."
Unfortunately, in most instances it must be the blind themselves who will provide the jobs, mainly through organization and expansion of their own factories, or through use of their professional skills or ownership of newsstands.
"Private enterprise is not absorbing blind people into their plants," said Goodpasture. "Industry and labor have not set up the machinery for acceptance of blind workers into manufacturing jobs."
As a result, almost all blind blue collar workers are employed in NIB factories, even though their skills are equal in many ways to sighted workers and their job safety records far exceed that of most other groups.
Output of these factories will perhaps surprise most people. In 1967 sales totaled $54 million, and the 5,000 workers earned $8,776,000 on an expenditure of six million manhours of labor.
Seldom, however, do blind blue collar workers graduate from their own special industries into jobs where they compete with sighted workers. An obvious disadvantage is that many of them are multiple handicapped, maybe deaf or emotionally disturbed, and so cannot compete.
However, a good many could obtain competitive jobs if given the chance. "It's not that our workers are not good enough; it is industry's lack of acceptance," Goodpasture clainns. This may or may not be industry's fault.
For many years the NIB did not try to educate industry in the values of employing blind workers, leaving that instead to state directors of vocational rehabilitation.
"Historically, our shops have not trained people with placeable skills," Goodpasture conceded. "We accept some of the responsibility for this, and now we are training them in operations that are usable in other industries."
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The New Mexico Federation of the Blind held its annual convention in old Santa Fe on May 25. A more charming place in which to hold a convention is hard to conceive. Santa Fe, the oldest state capitol (more than three hundred fifty years) is not only rich in the traditions of a magnificent past but also wealthy in the graces of today.
A small but spirited group of federationists attended, and the Convention was presided over by Sam Chavez. The mayor of Santa Fe extended greetings. President Chavez then gave his report covering in detail the internal problems which have been faced by the Federation during the past year.
The Constitutional Revision Committee made its report, recommending changes in membership, a limitation on dues, and details of the white cane drive. The report was adopted.
A local citizen described his plan to work on a sonic device for blind persons which he described as an "audio highway."
During the luncheon, Oliver Ortiz, Director of Services for the Blind in New Mexico discussed the various phases of those services which include vocational rehabilitation for the blind, home teaching or adjustment services, a sight conservation program, a business enterprise program (there are about thirty-five vending stands), special services, and the State Registry for blind which now has two thousand six hundred names.
Perry Sundquist, representing the National Federation of the Blind, attended and gave an address on the great contributions which the late Dr. Jacobus tenBroek made to the blind of the nation and of the world.
The New Mexico Federation pledged itself to renewed activity to advance the welfare of blind persons in close association with the National Federation.
The following were elected officers for the ensuing year and were installed by Perry Sunquist: President, Sam Chavez of Chimayo; First Vice President, Richard Armstrong of Albuquerque; First Trustee, Tony Garcia of Albuquerque; Second Trustee, Albert Gonzalez of Santa Fe; Third Trustee, Efrem Griego of Albuquerque; Recording Secretary, Ruth Armstrong of Albuquerque; Corresponding Secretary, Pauline Gomez of Santa Fe and Treasurer, Ruth Ihnat of Fairview.
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by N. E. Robertson
[Editor's Note: The following article was published in the May, 1968 issue of the magazine of the National Association of Parliamentarians and concerns a long-time Federationist in the State of Washington.]
Wesley M. Osborne, born in Carthage, New York, was much the same as you and I except that he had a promising future in the field of industrial chemistry. He began as a chemist for the National Paper Products Company from which he became the head chemist for the Newton Falls Paper Company. While serving in this capacity, he became the superintendent of the Company. At this time he developed two cellulose patents. After moving to the northwest and serving as head chemist for Rayonier, he went to work for Hooker Chemical Corporation where he helped develop new bleach systems for west coast paper-making plants.
In 1937, while working in the process study division at Hooker, Wes was blinded by a chemical explosion. This might have meant a life of utter dependency for him, but Wes was made of sterner stuff. He continued his work at Hooker until 1960.
His interest in parliamentary law began in 1955 when he was contacted by A, L. Struthers who was teaching the subject to a class of sightless persons. He joined the group and thus began his study of parliamentary law which has never ceased. If this class had become a unit, as was intended, it would have been the first parliamentary law unit in the state of Washington and also the first unit to be comprised of blind individuals.
It was during this time that he decided to become more involved with blind people and he formed a number of sets of bylaws for local blind associations. In 1956, he became a member of the Board of Trustees of the Washington Association of the Blind and has served ever since in this capacity. He has been their legislative representative since joining except when he served as President from 1964 to 1966. He has been active at each session of the Washington State Legislature since 1956. He rewrote the bylaws of the State Blind Association in 1959, which were adopted. He is now serving his second term as President of the Washington Foundation for the Blind. By appointment, he has served six years on the Washington State Advisory Committee on the Affairs of the Blind.
Wes is a charter member of the Blanche Wilkinson Unit of Parliamentarians, the first one in the northwesternmost state. He was elected President in I960 and served with confidence and poise. You might wonder how a sightless person can preside but it's really very simple. The member desiring recognition would rise, address the chair and state his name. Wes would recognize the member and the business would proceed. It soon became unnecessary for the members to repeat their names because Wes could recognize their voices easily.
Wes married his wife, Peggy, in 1963. She had been blind from the age of six months. It wasn't long until she shared his interest in parliamentary law.
Mrs. Herberte Ann Leonardy sent Wes a complimentary copy, in Braille, of her first Elementary Course in Parliamentary Law. Wes then started a course for other sightless persons.
Wes, along with several others in the area, wished to become a registered parliamentarian, so a coaching class was instituted which met five times with an approved teacher. A great deal of written work was assigned which Wes did in Braille. His wife, Peggy, with her flying fingers, is more adept at reading Braille, so she read his portion of the class work. Wes took his registration examination by answering the questions orally on tape.
Your handy copy of Robert's Rules of Order, Revised is contained in a volume, 4" x 6"x 1/4". The copy Wes has is in three volumes of 11" x 12" X 1 1/2" with a total of four hundred seventy-five pages.
Now that Wes is a registered Parliamentarian, he will encourage other blind people to study parliamentary law and teach them the underlying principles as well as the word of the law.
Please meet Mr. Wesley M. Osborne, the only living blind registered parliamentarian who has taken the registration test without sight. May he be an inspiration to you as he has been to us in the State of Washington.
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[Editor's Note: There is now pending in the Congress H.R. 2512 and S. 597, the copyright revision bill. There has been much concern among many blind persons throughout the country lest these bills, if enacted into law, would no longer make it possible to make recordings on tape for individual blind persons. Recently, John F. Nagle, Chief of the NFB Washington Office, Irvin P. Schloss, Legislative Analyst for the American Foundation for the Blind, and Robert Bray, Chief, and Charles Gallozzi, Assistant Chief, Division for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, Library of Congress, met with the copyright attorneys of the Library of Congress to discuss the matter. John Nagle asked specifically for the following letter for the purpose of publishing it in the MONITOR in order to allay the fears expressed by so many blind persons. However, this letter from the Register of Copyrights does not allay the fears of the Tarver Memorial Fund which raised the issue in the first place. A letter from Charles E. Owen, Jr., Administrator of the Fund, is also published here. Needless to say, the NFB's Washington representative, John Nagle, will continue to work on this matter and try to make sure that any copyright revision law which is adopted by the Congress is in no way detrimental to blind persons.]
June 6, 1968
Mr. John F. Nagle
National Federation of the Blind
1908 Q Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20009
Dear Mr. Nagle:
It was good to meet with you and Mr. Schloss for the enlightening discussion concerning the assertion that has recently been circulating to the effect that the copyright revision bill, H.R. 2 512 and S. 597, would curtail the doctrine of "fair use" as applied to the making of recordings for blind persons.
As we indicated to you, that assertion appears to be based on a misconception. We believe the situation may be summed up as follows:
The Division for the Blind and Physically Handicapped in the Library of Congress, and other organizations that carry on substantially extensive programs of recording copyrighted material for use of the blind, generally ask for and receive permission from the copyright owners. There are, however, a number of local groups of volunteers who make recordings for blind persons on an individual basis, and they operate on the assumption that their small-scale recording activities are permissible as fair use.
The doctrine of fair use, though not provided for in the present statute, has been developed by court decisions over a long period of time as a set of general principles applicable to a variety of situations. The copyright revision bill would not curtail that doctrine in any way. On the contrary, section 107 of the bill is a distillation of the principles enunciated in the court decisions, and would give express statutory confirmation to the doctrine. As the House Comniittee on the Judiciary has stated repeatedly in its Report on H. R. 2512 (House Report No. 83, 90th Congress), Section 107 would not change the scope of the present judicial doctrine of fair use in any way.
As far as we know, the limited operations of local volunteers in making recordings for blind individuals have not been questioned by copyright owners under the present law, and we see nothing in the copyright revision bill that would change the existing situation.
You mentioned to us the suggestion that the Senate Committee might include, in its report on the revision bill, an explanatory statement regarding the application of the fair use doctrine to recordings made by local volunteers for the use of blind persons. We agree that this suggestion merits the Committee's consideration and we will be glad to discuss it with the Committee staff.
Abraham L. Kaminstein
Register of Copyrights
June 28, 1968
Mr. John F. Nagle, Chief
National Federation of the Blind
1908 Que Street, N.W.
Washington 9, D.C.
Dear Mr. Nagle:
Thank you very much for your letter of June 7 and for the enclosed copy of the letter from Mr. Abraham Kaminstein, Register of Copyrights, both relating to our concern over the proposed amendment to the Copyright Law.
Mr. Kaminstein's letter was interesting, but not new. It follows the same series of opinions expressed by others to those of us who have indicated a concern over the proposed copyright amendments. The conclusions reached by Mr. Kaminstein are erroneous, we believe, because they are predicated upon mistaken premises. In addition, Mr. Kaminstein and others from whom we have heard rather naively indicate that since the "intent" of the framers of the proposed law is not to deprive blind people of their reading matter or entertainment, and since it is unlikely in their judgment that any copyright owner or federal judge would take legal action against anyone who was aiding the blind, that all our fears are groundless. To us, this dreamy and overly optimistic approach to a hard legal problem is unrealistic.
All of the replies to our objections to S. 597 have assumed that the present reading for the blind is performed under "fair use." This is utterly untrue, and since it is, all reasoning predicated upon it is equally-false. Let me explain.
"Fair use" is a judicial doctrine applied by the courts under the present law to permit the use of portions of copyrighted materials without securing the prior consent of the copyright owner. Such examples of "fair use" as have been found to be typical are excerpts from a scholarly work quoted in another work on the same subject and excerpts from any work which has been copyrighted used in connection with a review or literary criticism of that work. In either case, and in other cases of "fair use," only a small portion of the copyrighted material is actually quoted or reproduced and the courts have been harsh on those persons who made use of a greater amount of a copyrighted work than was necessary to perform such "fair use" functions. A moment's reflection will disclose that reading an entire book for a blind person does not even remotely come under such a concept.
Right now, a sighted person or a blind person may render a copyrighted book aloud onto a recording machine and make a recording of his audible reading of such a copyrighted work. No court decision has ever held such an act to be illegal, and nothing in the present law states that it is illegal. Anyone may make such an audible rendering of a copyrighted work at will on recording devices of his own.
Reading for the blind is done under the law of agency and not under any concept of "fair use." The law of agency states, simply, that what a man may legally do for himself he may legally employ an agent to do for him. Since, as noted above, a man may legally read aloud a copyrighted work onto a tape recorder he may with equal legality employ an agent to perform this act in his stead. Readers for the blind act as agents for their sightless friends in order to read for those sightless friends what the sightless people may legally read for themselves but lack the physical capacity for so doing.
The new statute changes all of that. Sound recordings and derivative works are specifically defined and specifically reserved to the owners of the copyright. At the present time a court may reasonably construe the existing statute under the doctrine of agency to permit someone to read for the blind. Under the proposed statute this right of discretionary construction is taken from the courts and instead there is substituted a specific group of definitions and a specific group of violations, and it compels the courts to assess criminal penalties against anyone who knowingly so acts.
An additional and collateral attack upon the "fair use" concept's being employed for reading for the blind under the new statute can be derived from the wording of Section 107 of the proposed law. In this Section, "fair use" is defined in accordance with previous court decisions, just as Mr. Kaminstein states, but instead of new and other uses of copyrighted materials being subject to discretionary interpretation by the courts, the courts are now compelled to find any use that departs from the specifics of Section 107 to be a violation of copyright and thus to assess criminal penalties against the violator. One of the points to be considered by the courts under proposed Section 107 in determining whether a given use is "fair use" is "the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole." Since the entire or whole copyrighted work is proposed to be read for the blind this would remove discretion from the courts and compel them to regard such total use as a violation of copyright.
The statutory confirmation given to the doctrine of "fair use" mentioned by Mr. Kaminstein is thus seen to be a limitation and restriction upon the power of the courts to find a specific act not to violate a copyright.
Mr. Kaminstein next advises that the House Committee on the Judiciary has stated that the new law will not change the scope of the present judicial doctrine of "fair use" in any way. This is equivalent to the frequently expressed thought of members of the Committee in both the Senate and the House and other members of Congress that it was not the "intent" of Congress to restrict reading for the blind. This discussion of intent of Congress does not take into account the realistic and hard-nosed federal judiciary before whom such cases would be tried. We have never heard of a judge who gave compelling weight to the intent of the framers of the law in the face of clear and simple English words which state without equivocation precisely what is fair use and what is not, and which state further that sound recordings and derivative works are absolutely restricted to the owners of the copyrights. I am afraid that all the good intent in the world could not be used as the basis for a court decision flying in the face of these clear words in the Statute.
Mr. Kaminstein says then that as far as he knows the making of recordings for blind persons has never been questioned by copyright owners under the present law and that he does not see any reason why the new revision should change that situation. In reply to this I might mention that Mr. Kaminstein's relationship with copyright owners is on quite a different plane from ours or from those of our friends and acquaintances who have had such relationships in the past. The copyright owners are anxious to cooperate with Mr. Kaminstein, but they are under no such compulsion with respect to small independent organizations such as ours or to individuals. His knowledge then is incomplete, because our files contain evidence of the threats of legal action made against us on a number of occasions by owners of copyrights when it was brought to their attention that we were reading their copyrighted material for the benefit of blind persons. We are advised that this is not an uncommon situation amongst individuals and small groups. We know further that requests for copyright clearances by small groups are often ignored and remain unanswered or are vigorously denied. The Library of Congress has very kindly offered to secure such copyright clearances for the Tarver Memorial Fund in the future, and we are making use of their offer to secure copyright clearances on all materials now being read for our Smith-McKie Memorial Library. But this does not alter the basic thesis of our argument that blind persons stand to lose a privilege which they now enjoy in the event that the proposed bill is passed.
All of this concern and discussion, this argument and counter-argument, this fear and dismay, can be put to rest finally and completely by a simple amendment added to the proposed Bill. If reading for the blind really hurts nobody as everyone has repeatedly stated, and if it was not the intent of anyone to deprive the blind of having folks read for them from copyrighted materials, and if it was indeed the intent of all of those people who have taken part in the copyright bill revision and in the discussion of same, to preserve such rights and privileges to blind people, then who [sic] is it going to injure if that statement is made in clear language so that everybody can understand it, right there in the middle of the Bill? If it is not, however, then I predict that in a few years, as soon as all the present furore has died down, some copyright owner, overly jealous of his rights, is going to bring an action in Federal Court against some reader for the blind and when he does he is going to win because the law says that he will. And when he wins that is going to be the end of a tremendous amount of help and assistance now freely extended to visually handicapped persons by those who can see. If the Library of Congress assists us in obtaining copyright clearances our volunteer work in reading is not going to be hurt in the slightest by the new bill. Nevertheless, the welfare of the blind people in this country is our primary concern, and because it is we are frightened. And we are frightened because nobody has come even close to coming to grips with the true state of affairs disclosed in that proposed law.
Incidentally, Mr. Kaminstein does not mention the other point of our concern with respect to blind people and tape recorders, namely the copying onto tape of commercially produced phonograph records. This too is forbidden by the new law and this too constitutes an important source of entertainment and pleasure to blind people of limited income. Under the proposed law such a person would become a federal criminal if he copied a phonograph record or radio program in the privacy of his own home onto his own tape.
We will indeed be glad to publish Mr. Kaminstein's letter, although he has not asked us to do so nor has he communicated with us with respect to it. Will you, however, have the courtesy to grant us equal time in the "Braille Monitor" to indicate our disagreement with the basic thesis and the legal philosophy that these people advance with unbelievable optimism in defense of a proposed change in the law that bodes much potential harm to those who cannot see and who depend upon their tape recorders for a most vital adjunct to daily living? We personally and our organization have nothing to either gain or lose by the passage of this piece of legislation, except that we all lose one more small piece of the liberties which we pay lip service to but seldom go to the trouble to fight for--until it is too late. Right now it is not too late. Next year it may be.
Will you carry our message too to your readers?
Charles E. Owen, Jr.
Tarver Memorial Fund
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Here are the facts: George Rittgers, well-known federationist of Kansas City, Missouri, was struck by a car on March 1, 1965. The jury returned a verdict against the driver of the car in the amount of $14,000 damages to Mr. Rittgers, and judgment was entered in accordance with the verdict. The driver of the car, a postal employee, appealed the judgment to the Kansas City Court of Appeals which affirmed the judgment of the lower court.
In the hearing on the appeal the following facts were established: Mr. Rittgers had been employed in the cafeteria operated in the main Post Office since coming to Kansas City in 1950. He was one of the managers of the cafeteria and travelled to and from work, walking and riding the bus by himself, but accompanied by his white cane. After getting off the bus in the early morning of March 1, 1965 on his way to work Rittgers went to the curb and stood on it until some cars passed. He stepped off the curb and started across the street, reaching a point which he judged to be approximately the middle of the street. He stopped and turned to his right to hear if any vehicle was approaching. He heard none. Then he was hit by a car.
At the hearing Rittgers had five witnesses who testified that he was particularly adept at travelling. The driver of the car stated he did not see Rittgers until an object hit his car fender between the front of the car and the windshield on the left side. He testified that visibility that morning directly in front of his car was twenty to twenty-five feet and he could see to the side, considering the fog, about eighteen inches to two feet. Yet he did not see Rittgers!
The Court of Appeals stated that a motorist is under the continuous statutory duty to exercise the highest degree of care at all times and to keep a careful and vigilant lookout for other persons and vehicles. To fulfill that duty he is required to look in such an observant manner as to enable him to see that which a person in the exercise of the highest degree of care would be expected to see under similar circumstances; and where one is charged with the duty to look and to look is to see, he must be held to have seen what looking would have revealed. The opinion of the Court of Appeals further states: "When viewed in a light most favorable to plaintiff the evidence shows that plaintiff had reached a point near the center of Pershing Road where he stopped and turned his head to the right. The defendant said the lighting at that particular position of Pershing Road was very poor. The jury could have found otherwise, because as shown by the plat introduced in evidence, one of the overhanging street lights was near the south curb line of Pershing Road and within thirty feet of the crosswalk.
While the Court of Appeals has upheld the lower court's finding in favor of Rittgers, here it is more than three years after the accident and yet Rittgers (who was very seriously and probably permanently injured) has not yet received any compensation for his injuries. At the time of the accident, the driver of the car had two other cars, both insured, but there was no insurance on the car he was driving that morning. He has approximately $10,000 equity in real estate property and earns around $650 a month as a postal employee. He has filed for bankruptcy. Following is the eloquent letter which George Rittgers wrote to the Postmaster General:
May 10, 1968
The Honorable Postmaster General
I appeal to you for fairness, reason and justice. I was injured by a postal employee in a state which has a driver's responsibility law, a White Cane law and a city ordinance of White Cane Safety. I have carried this suit through the court to the Kansas City Court of Appeals, a copy of which decision I enclose.
The defendant has never at any time evidenced any inclination or desire to make any adjustment whatever.
I have been deprived of the right to work; have endured and still endure considerable physical suffering and great mental anguish, and my wife, who has had to bear the burden since my injury, also has endured considerable anguish.
During this period I would have earned more after taxes than the amount of the judgment. I do feel that I should be entitled to something. You, sir, I feel are my last harbor of hope for justice.
And so I seek, if possible, that you might find it within the scope of your office to help me in some degree in this matter. I regret to say that I shall never again be able to work where any amount of physical effort is required, and for this reason, I request your help.
Very truly yours,
George A. Rittgers
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[Editor's Note: There are all kinds of appeal letters being sent to potential contributors to worthy causes. One of the most unusual and clever fundraising letters is being used by the Alaska Federation of the Blind and is printed below in the belief that it might offer ideas to some of our other State affiliates.]
The Federation of the Blind here in Alaska
Has a small favour we'd like to askya,
Please send us an item worth only four bits,
And in the next lines you'll see what it gits.
Just a fifty cent item that is wrapped and is new
To the address above and here's what we'll do:
We'll take your donation all wrapped as was sent
Along with the others they may fill a tent,
And put them in stores where the owners are kind,
And the result will be splendid we're sure we will find.
For with a little persuasion and whole lot of luck
They're going to peddle each thing for a buck.
They'll donate their shelf space as you did your gift,
And the dollar profit to us will sure be a lift.
It will be easy on all and no strain to a soul,
And if all goes well, we will sure make our goal.
Our jobs are too many and our dollars too few
To do all the things that we have to do.
To serve Alaska's blind as well as intended,
There's a great many bucks that must be expended.
So thank you so much for your prompt contribution
That we may continue to be a good institution.
To buy the braille watches, braille writers, and canes,
And many other things with various names.
So thank you good neighbor and give us your blessing,
And know that your help has made our problem less pressing.
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by Jesse Anderson
The 1968 convention of the Utah Association for the Blind was held on May 25 at the Murray B. Allen Center for the blind in Salt Lake City. President Petersen made some pertinent announcements concerning the activities of the day. He then introduced our guests. They were: Manuel Urena representing the NFB from Des Moines, Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Hopkins, Chuck Wolhoff and Jan Omvig from Boise, Idaho. Ken Hopkins is the new Director of the Idaho Commission for the Blind and Chuck Wolhoff is vice-president of the Student Division of the NFB.
The next order of business was an address of welcome by Donald W. Perry who is supervisor of Services for the Visually Handicapped. Don Edwards, Principal of the Utah School for the Blind followed Mr. Perry and described the plans for the school's new campus in Ogden. A new school building--including a swimming pool--is now under construction and should be completed by Christmas of this year.
Dr. Vaughn L. Hall, Director of Rehabilitation in Utah, then told the convention about his advisory Committee which was appointed about a year ago. Services for the visually handicapped is a division of the Department of Rehabilitation. The Advisory Committee is composed of representatives of the visually handicapped, (blind,) business, labor, the Lions Clubs and the legislative Council. Three productive meetings have already been held in which ideas and suggestions were freely exchanged. Dr. Hall expressed the hope that this committee would serve as an important link of communication between the blind and his department and suggested that the Association should elect a permanent member for the Committee.
The last speaker for the morning session was Kenneth Hopkins from Idaho who briefly reviewed the new Idaho Commission for the Blind and his plans for it.
The convention elected Catherine Thompson president and Gladys Nichol treasurer by acclamation.
Following the election, Manuel Urena discussed the Welfare laws of Utah. A lively discussion ensued after his remarks.
The convention was climaxed by a banquet and dance during the evening. Mr. Urena was the banquet speaker and he reviewed the accomplishments of the Federation and discussed Social Security and Disability laws. All of us went away with the feeling that this was one of our best conventions and we are indebted to the NFB for sending Manuel Urena out to visit and give us much valuable information.
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Helen Keller, who overcame both blindness and deafness to become one of the world's great women, died on June 1 at her home near West Port, Connecticut. She would have been eighty-eight years of age on June 27.
Miss Keller, who was born in Alabama died following a mild heart attack the week before. With the aid of her teacher, Miss Keller learned to communicate through sign language, and read Braille. She was graduated with highest honors from Radcliffe College in 1904 and received numerous degrees and awards.
Miss Keller wrote several books, the most famous being the "Story of My Life" published in 1902. She had been in failing health for the last four years and had been bedridden during the past two years.
Some twelve hundred mourners, led by the Chief Justice of the United States and Mrs. Earl Warren honored the memory of Helen Keller at the funeral services held on June 5 at the Washington Cathedral.
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by Lorraine Arvidson
Beginning February 1, 1968, the national minimum wage law was raised to $1.60 per hour. Our sheltered workshop, the Minneapolis Society for the Blind, was told to raise their wages to the national minimum wage, as they were making enough money to do so. Beginning on that date the minimum was paid. It was paid for three months.
The Minneapolis Society for the Blind subcontracts to private industry. Some of these industries are Honeywell, Control Data, IBM, and some government sewing projects.
Yes, for three months the minimum wage was paid; however, it was based on a piece rate basis. Going back to when the minimum wage was $1.25 and on to $1.60, the piece-rate rates were not changed. In other words, those in production were expected to produce more parts each time the minimum wage was raised. They did not give a bigger sum of money for the varying quotas.
About the first of May the production manager of the Minneapolis Society decided that they could not afford to pay the $1.60 and called individual employees in for a conference. Each employee was offered a special exempt waiver to sign, agreeing that if he did not meet the specified quotas, he would agree to work for $1.10 rather than $1.60. If they did not agree to sign said waiver, they would be terminated from the Minneapolis Society in two weeks. Several refused to sign the waiver and were terminated.
Another complaint of the employees of the Minneapolis Society is that quotas are rated as the four winds. For instance, an operation of cutting bar stock paid eight cents per piece, while the next operation which consisted of grinding both ends of the butt piece was rated at six cents per piece, and so on. Certainly, it would seem that a piece requiring two or more operations should carry a higher rate than any single operation would. This discrepancy seems to be due to an inefficient production manager.
Contact was made with Kenneth Jernigan and John Nagle by interested parties. They suggested writing to the Federal Department of Wages and Hours and the Public Contracts Division which was done, and also, that the Central Labor Council be contacted. This has also been done.
A representative from the Chicago office of the Wages and Hours Division came to Minneapolis, talked with the production manager of the Minneapolis Society for the Blind and naturally fell in with them. He says that the Minneapolis Society has held the special exempt waiver certificate for quite some time and can under the present laws rightfully use it. Further work is planned in that direction to cause the Minneapolis Society to lose this exemption certificate. Somewhat better luck is expected from the Central Labor Council. Several of the unions in this area are planning an investigation into the labor tactics of the Minneapolis Society for the Blind.
Much work remains to be done to force the sheltered workshops to employ fair labor practices, or else we should try to eliminate these workshops. They are not FOR THE BLIND, but AGAINST THE BLIND.
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by Mabel Nading
To choose the most important feature of the annual convention of the Iowa Association of the Blind is no easy task, but no reporter complains of having an over-abundance of interesting news to tell.
Is the most important news the resolution we passed concerning insurance discrimination? After Mr. Urena read excerpts from the paper on insurance discrimination which he presented in Los Angeles last year, we unanimously adopted a resolution urging the insurance commission to move quickly to make the insurance companies "show cause" for the continued discrimination, and authorizing legal action if necessary.
Are the forty new members of the Association more newsworthy?
Certainly the banquet at the Clayton House in Waterloo was a highlight of the gathering. Judy Young was presented the first Dr. H. F. Schluntz College Student award, one hundred dollars, which will be given each year to the outstanding college senior in Iowa. Mr. William Eberline received the Altig award, an engraved Omega watch, the Association's highest honor given each year to the person who has done most to further the interests of the blind in the state. (Roger Erpelding had been given the Palmer Memorial award earlier, a twenty-five dollar savings bond given to the outstanding graduating senior at the Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School.)
Dr. Jacob Freid of the NFB Board of Directors and the Jewish Braille Institute of America was the guest speaker at the banquet, and he also spoke at the regular sessions.
And there is still more. Under the revised constitution that went into effect this year it again became possible for organized groups of blind people to affiliate as chapters of the IAB. (Des Moines had been an affiliate in the early 1950's.) This year six chapters sought affiliation and were accepted.
This was an election year, and the following people were elected or re-elected: Neil Butler, president; Jim Gashel, first vice president; Mary Roth, second vice president; Jo Aslayton, secretary; H. E. "Bud" Stutters, treasurer. Those elected for two-year terms on the Board of Directors were Mabel Nading, Jim Gashel, Judy Young, and Manuel Urena; those elected for one-year terms on the Board were John Taylor, Fred Kinne, Jim Tanner, and Ruth Anne Holkesvik.
There are three delegates to the NFB convention; Neil Butler, Jim Gashel, and Bud Stutters; Shirley Lansing is alternate delegate.
Throughout the meeting which was held at the Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School on May 31, June 1 and 2, there were reports by presidents of organizations of the blind in Iowa, and we had prizes, prizes, and more prizes.
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[Editor's Note: The following letter has been received from Mr. O. R. Mwaba, General Secretary, The Zambia Council for the Handicapped, P. O. Box RW. 73, Ridgeway, Lusaka, Republic of Zambia, Africa. Any persons who are interested in making application should communicate directly with Mr. Mwaba.]
9th April, 1968
American Brotherhood for the Blind, Inc.
18440 Topham Street
Tarzana, California 91356
The Zambian National Council for the blind is developing the expansion of Blind Welfare therefore we are asking for the recruitment of the following personnel through you, with immediate urgency please.
1. REPLACEMENT AND TRAINING OFFICER
I. e., A person who has had experience in the replacement and finding of jobs for the blind.
Salary 1,780 Zambain pounds, plus recruitment allowance.
2. TWO EDUCATIONALISTS
Who have had experience in the teaching of the blind or blind education; they should be people qualified to teach in Secondary School, or people who have had a reasonable experience in an ordinary school, notably who have served as headmaster or principal of a secondary school, or members of certain educational institution Councils, Salary 1,780 pounds, plus recruitment allowance.
3. PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER
This post is most urgent, for the Council is trying to sell its services to the public, but lacks suitable personnel for the task, such a person should have experience in the transmission of information service of any department, Salary 1,800 pounds per annum, plus recruitment allowance.
4. An expert in the teaching of telephone operating. Dictaphone typing, and typing to the blind. Salary 900-1,500 pounds per annum, plus recruitment allowance.
One Zambian pound is equivalent to three American dollars, is higher in value than a British pound.
Please forward letters to the General Secretary, Zambia
Council for the Blind, Box RW. 73,
Lusaka. Republic of Zambia.
The Council has no sex preference, any applicant is welcomed.
The Council will pay for travel expenses. Please do your part.
O. R. Mwaba
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[Editor's Note: The NFB presented strong supporting testimony in both the Senate and House hearings on the Architectural Barriers bill. Since the House Committee on Public Works has acted to broaden and strengthen S. 222, the NFB certainly gives its support and endorsement to H. R. 6589, which the Committee approved to make federal buildings accessible and usable by physically handicapped persons.]
TO THE CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES:
To most Americans, a stairway poses no problem. A narrow doorway is little more than an inconvenience. But for more than twenty million of our citizens, these simple structures bar the living of a normal life.
One in every ten Americans suffer from some disability which keeps him from using buildings designed--not cruelly, but thoughtlessly--only for the physically fit. Problems in the design of our buildings pose the greatest single obstacle to employment of the handicapped.
If we are to give the millions of handicapped Americans the opportunity to live life to the fullest, we must not put unnecessary barriers in their path.
We want our schools, libraries, office buildings, theaters, museums, stadiums and transportation systems to be accessible to all.
In 1966, the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare appointed a National Commission on Architectural Barriers to Rehabilitation of the Handicapped. I am pleased now to transmit to the Congress the report of that Commission entitled "Design for all Americans."
The report shows increased awareness of the problems by State and local governments, architects, and the general public. It the past year, the General Services Administration has substantially modified its design standards to give more consideration to the handicapped.
But the report also shows that a substantial task lies ahead.
--In many cases. State laws are sadly inadequate. Some cover only State-owned buildings; others do not spell out the needed standards.
--No school of architecture gives special or continuing attention to the problem of accessibility.
In the next thirty years, more buildings will be constructed in this country than have been built in the past two hundred years. And as we go about this tremendous task, we must make sure that the needs of the handicapped are not overlooked.
I commend this Report to your attention.
LYNDON B. JOHNSON
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by Christy Cooke
[Editor's Note: The following article appeared in the Richmond (Va.) Times-Dispatch on July 2, 1968 and presents the story of a well-adjusted lady.]
"When a thunder storm knocks out the lights, I'm in my glory because no one but me can find anything."
This typifies the happy philosophy of Mrs. Everett L. Foulkrod, president of the Virginia Federation of the Blind, who attended the national convention of the blind in Des Moines, Iowa.
Mrs. Foulkrod expected to "see" a beautiful trip. In fact, traveling is one of her favorite hobbies, for she is able to visualize everything through the eyes of her husband.
"He has been my life. I have seen so much through his eyes," she said of Foulkrod, an electrical switchboard operator for E. I. DuPont de Nennours and Co., Inc. "He describes everything to me from pretty dogwood trees, or one small flower, up to big wheels of a truck."
Blinded since the age of twenty-nine, Mrs. Foulkrod has retained her vivid imagination. "I color everything in my mind," she said.
She makes it her policy to keep busy. She not only prepares meals and cleans house, but also devotes much of her energy to the state federation of the blind.
She said her greatest task as president is educating the public about the capabilities of blind people. "I can't stand stereotyping the blind," she emphasized. "We're just human beings.
"The best way to educate sighted people (about the blind) is to put yourself in contact with them, like going to church and taking an active part in lodges and civic associations. This shows people that we have ability, rather than sitting in a chair and rocking," she continued.
Mrs. Foulkrod's other goal as president is to help get certain bills advantageous to the blind passed by the General Assembly and Congress. For example, she advocates a law that would forbid obstructions on sidewalks, such as bicycles, wagons and rollerskates. "These are our pet peeves," she said.
Mrs. Foulkrod has a remarkable hobby. It is doing things for other people.
Mrs. Foulkrod has adopted a jovial attitude about her blindness, making light of her mistakes.
Mrs. Foulkrod said she does not know how she manages to cook and clean. "You just have to have the desire to do it," she explained.
Mrs. Foulkrod said her friends don't really believe she is blind sometimes.
"My mother-in-law used to say I was peeking."
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by Shahida Kazi
[Editor's Note: The following article was published in an English language Pakistani newspaper.]
Pakistan's first blind teacher of the blind to be awarded a scholarship abroad, Miss Farkhunda Wahid has returned after a four-month stay in the United States. She says she was impressed by the facilities given to the blind in the "sighted schools" in the States, and she plans to introduce similar methods in schools in this country.
Miss Wahid is a resource teacher in Pakistan's only school offering integrated education--the Joan MacDonald High School in Lahore, established in 1964.
At the school, seven blind students are being educated together with a thousand sighted students, and Miss Wahid's job is to teach them Braille and prepare them to study together with the sighted.
After preliminary instructions, they are put in the same classes as the others and taught by the same teachers. The blind students prepared by Miss Wahid are in various classes, and one of them has reached the matric standard.
And it was always the blind students. Miss Wahid said, who took the top position in the various classes.
In Pakistan, she pointed out, the teacher herself had to do everything--even transcribing books in Braille with the help of readers.
In fact, the biggest problem facing the blind students here is the lack of text books. The only braille press in the country could print books only up to the fourth class level, and that also only in Urdu.
The transcription service recently started by the Pakistan Association of the Blind with the help of voluntary workers has transcribed a few books, but these are not enough to meet the demand.
Miss Wahid said she was going to do everything to make the integration programme a success in Pakistan, and pleaded for help from the government as well as the public.
In fact a scheme for integrated education and the training of teachers for the blind was prepared by the Association of the Blind in 1962 and submitted to the Education Department, but it has still not been implemented.
No other school whether government or private has yet started the integrated system but it is likely to be implemented in four government schools from the next year.
It is estimated that there are 65,000 to one lakh [100,000] blind children in Pakistan ready for education, but only about 275 to 300 are getting instruction in the various schools for the blind.
The President of the Association of the Blind, Dr. Fatima Shah, said that this was due to two reasons. Firstly all the blind schools in the country were charitable institutions being run by poor welfare associations, and parents belonging to high social status did not like to send their children to these schools. However, if instruction were provided objection would be removed.
Again many parents still believed that it was useless to send a blind child to school as they would never be able to do anything or lead a normal life. This was an erroneous belief and would have to be removed.
Further, the instruction normally given to the blind over here such as weaving and cane work was out of date, and not of any practical use, while in an integrated system they would be able to study the subject of their choice and benefit from it.
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[Editor's Note: The following article is taken from The Palmetto Auroran for May, 1968--the publication of our South Carolina affiliate--and is a good example of "how to do it", this time in the all-important field of fund-raising. Other affiliates, state and local may find ideas here.]
Fifteen years ago the Columbia Chapter of the Aurora Club attempted its first public fund raising promotion. The organization was small, without much influence, and not well known. Not many of the members had ever participated in a project of this type. Despite these circumstances, however, the club enjoyed modest results from its initial venture. It was decided to sponsor a barbecue chicken benefit supper with the membership selling tickets to the general public. The first try resulted in two hundred plates being sold with the club enjoying a profit of $100.00. This was by far the most money there had ever been in the treasury. As a matter of fact, the club was so "wealthy" for the first time a finance committee was appointed to administer the financial affairs of the club.
Since that humble beginning in 1954, the Club has enjoyed spectacular success with this annual event. Profits totaling nearly $15,000 have been realized from these annual suppers. All of these funds, that is the entire $15,000, have directly benefited the blind of the greater Columbia area. Today, and this will be true tomorrow as well, there is something to show for this hard work by the blind themselves, stretching over a period of one and a half decades. Although construction of the Aurora Center did not begin until the spring of 1961, a Center fund was started sometime earlier. The first money, which went into the Center fund, was proceeds from this annual barbecue supper. The Club's first bus, purchased in 1956, was bought with earnings from this supper project.
The citizens of Columbia are now aware of this Annual Aurora event and it is now considered to be a community classic, largely because of its successful history, and the fact it is successfully promoted by the City's visually handicapped citizens. This year the success of the supper was no less spectacular as the overall effort of the club was again good and the response of the general public, as in the past, was outstanding. Some 1750 plates were sold. The club realized a net profit of just under $1400. This is nearly nine times as many plates as were sold the first year the supper was held in 1954, and profits fourteen times as great. Any business enterprise would be pleased with such a fantastic growth.
In addition to the hundreds of plates which are sold annually over the years, the club has earned the respect and admiration of a number of people who demonstrate their support by making substantial financial contributions, which enhances the success of these suppers. Aside from the financial aspect the club realizes gains in other ways.
During the seven years these suppers have been held at the Aurora Center, more than 10,000 persons have visited the Center with some 1500 citizens in attendance this year. Since the event is always held in early spring, with this year's supper being March 28, the weather is almost always ideal and this year was no exception. The response of residents who were called upon by members during the three night canvass was the best yet. Last year a record of 465 tickets were sold on the canvass, but this year the record was broken as the club was only two tickets shy of selling 500.
As usual there were many persons responsible for the smooth operation of the supper and deserving of commendation. This event has necessarily become highly organized with various groups and committees co-ordinating their efforts to assure maximum teamwork and success. First, there is the membership which must sell the tickets. There must then be assistance by the Boy Scouts on the canvass, co-operation by the bus committee and the bus driver and 1500 boxes must be assembled by various members which are used in order for the customer to be able to pick up his plate and carry it with him. There are two serving lines which prepare the plates, and again this year these ladies, some fifteen or twenty strong, performed in a professional manner, avoiding undesirable waiting lines.
This was the fifteenth consecutive year Catherine Morrison served as hostess, and it can be said without reservation that no event could have a better hostess than Catherine. She warmly greets each person and sees to it that they are also given literature on the club, which is also distributed by the members during the canvass. Oh yes, thanks to Barry Chavis, who added even further color to the occasion by hand painting an eight foot sign stretching across the entrance of the Center extending a warm welcome to all. True, much hard work goes into this annual supper, but when it is all over, the financial needs of the club have been assured for another year, and everyone has a feeling of a job well done. The success of the event is based, not on blind luck, but on blind work.
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by Joseph R. Daughen
[From The Evening Bulletin; Philadelphia, May 16, 1968]
Harrisburg--The Shafer Administration has rejected Dr. Norman M. Yoder's plea to be returned to his former job or any other state position. Dr. Yoder was fired as state commissioner for the blind after he admitted last January 18 that his story of six college students who were blinded while under the influence of LSD was a hoax. Since that time, his eighty-nine days of accumulated sick leave have kept him on the state pay roll. On June 10, however, his $20,664 salary will be cut off.
A top Shafer Administration official said Dr. Yoder visited the governor's office seeking to be re-hired.
While he was conferring with an Administration official, a Civil Service hearing on Dr. Yoder's appeal from his dismissal was postponed at his attorney's request.
Dr. Yoder's overtures were rejected, said the official. He was told that his actions had "seriously embarrassed" Governor Shafer and that the state could not "afford" that embarrassment again.
The appeal filed with the Civil Service Commission, this official said, was being used by Dr. Yoder to "pressure" the state into rehiring him in some capacity.
Dr. Yoder, who is legally blind, has spent most of his life working with the blind. He lives in Camp Hill,
The official said he sympathizes with Dr. Yoder and indicated that discreet inquiries are under way to find him a job elsewhere, possibly with the Federal Government.
Meanwhile, the state was preparing to justify his dismissal.
On February 18, Dr. Thomas W. Georges, Jr., secretary of health and welfare, notified Dr. Yoder of his dismissal by letter. This notice, however, listed as the cause for dismissal that "poor health prohibits your effectively performing the duties of this executive office."
After admitting the hoax, Dr. Yoder entered a psychiatric hospital in Philadelphia, but was discharged in less than a month.
Since "poor health" was the only cause listed for the firing, Dr. Yoder appealed to the Civil Service Commission, stating that he had regained his health.
Shafer's spokesman said the dismissal notice was purposely soft because the Administration wanted "to go as easy as possible" on Dr. Yoder. At that time, the Administration was confident that Dr. Yoder, who also was embarrassed by the affair, would accept his firing quietly.
In light of this, Jacques V. Fox, general counsel to the Welfare Department, drew up a supplemental schedule of causes.
He did this on May 2, but Dr. Yoder's attorney, Elmer E, Harter, asked Fox to delay filing the document because he had injured his left foot and was hospitalized.
When the matter came before the commission yesterday, Harter said he still had not prepared the case and asked for a delay of at least twenty days to familiarize himself with the supplemental charges.
Fox mailed the supplemental list to Harter and Dr. Yoder after the hearing was postponed, but he refused to discuss the new charges.
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[From The New York Times, May 11, 1968]
WASHINGTON, May 10. (AP)--The Food and Drug Administration announced today new labeling requirements for birth control pills because of new evidence it says indicates the pills may be hazardous to health.
The agency cited findings recently published by British researchers indicating that those taking the pills increase their chances of death or disease due to blood clots by seven to ten times.
The revised labeling points out that the British studies cannot be applied directly to the United States or other countries because the incidence of blood clot diseases may not be the same.
A similar study in the United States is to be completed early next year.
Announcement of the labeling changes came after a meeting between F.D.A. officials and eight American manufacturers of oral contraceptives. The meeting was called by Dr. Herbert L. Lev Jr., director of the agency's Bureau of Medicine.
The British studies showed the highest risks of thromboembolic deaths and diseases in women between the ages of thirty-five and forty-four. The studies found four deaths per 100,000 women of those ages taking birth control pills for one year, compared with one death in 200,000 nonusers a year from same causes.
The new labeling, for the benefit of physicians and druggists, will be required on all shipments of oral contraceptives produced after June 30. Advertisements must reflect the revised labeling September 1.
The labeling states that under adverse reaction, a statistically significant association has been demonstrated between the use of oral contraceptives and thrombophlebitis and pulmonary embolism.
Thrombophlebitis is the formation of blood clots together with inflammation of blood vessels. Pulmonary embolism is the lodging of a blood clot in a vessel in the lung.
The British studies found women who used birth control pills had a higher risk of death from blood clots lodging in the lungs and, to a lesser extent, in the brain.
The F.D.A. labeling says nothing about clots in the brain.
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WASHINGTON (AP)--A unanimous Supreme Court barred Alabama, and by implication all states, from denying welfare aid to children simply because their mothers are having extramarital sex relations.
"Destitute children who are legally fatherless cannot be flatly denied federally funded assistance on the transparent fiction that they have a substitute father," wrote Chief Justice Earl Warren.
There is no question, the court said, that Alabama and other states can take into account contributions by the so-called substitute father in deciding whether a child is needy.
However, if the man makes no contribution to the children's support, the children cannot be struck from welfare rolls simply because there is a man cohabiting with the mother.
The ruling, which rested strictly on interpretation of federal welfare law and federal policy, said it "is simply inconceivable" that states are free to discourage immorality and illegitimacy by "the device of absolute disqualification of needy children."
The Aid to Families with Dependent Children program was established by the federal Social Security Act of 1935. It specifies that aid can be granted only if "a parent" of the needy child is continually absent from the home.
The court, through Warren, concluded that by the term "parent"
Congress meant "only those persons with a legal duty of support."
The carefully worded decision left room for Alabama and other states to deal with the problems of "immorality and illegitimacy" by several different methods under the federal law.
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[Editor's Note: The following letter and description of an ink print-Braille duplicating set have been received from General B. A. r. o. Aramis Ammannato, Vice President, Unione Italiana dei Ciechi, Sede Centrale; 00187 Roma, Via Borgognona, 38 Rome, Italy. It is requested that individuals or agencies wishing to reply send their views directly to General Ammannato.]
Dear Mr. Kletzing,
I thank you for your letter of March 19, 1968. I will reply to it later because the matter is rather complex and it requires some thinking over.
I take this opportunity to enclose herewith a short description of the Inkprint-Braille Duplicating Set developed by Mr. Francesconi, an engineer who has worked for many years for our Organisation.
As you will see this duplicating set is very interesting and its performances are unique in the world. But there is a great preliminary difficulty about it: to be available to any average person, organisation or agency at a reasonable cost, the set must be mass-produced.
To this end, I take the liberty of asking you to use the International Federation of the Blind and the National Federation of the Blind to send out the following questionnaire accompanied with a copy of the enclosed description to any potential customer, i.e. any U.S. organisation and agency for and of the blind, or members of the I.F.B. The purpose of my request is to know wether there is a large enough market to warrant mass -production of the Duplicating Set by a big company.
Here is the questionnaire:
1) Are you interested in the complete Inkprint-Braille duplicating set (costing about dollars 400-450)
2) Are you interested only in the Electric Braille Typewriter (costing about 200-250 dollars?
One point to be emphasized is that either the complete Inkprint-Braille Duplicating Set or the Electric Braille Typewriter, autonomously operated can write interline and interpoint braille, which, I think, is unique in the world.
In the hope that the I.F.B. and the N.F.B. will be able to cooperate, I thank you very warmly and I send you my best regards.
IL VICE PRESIDENTE
(Gen. B. A. r. o. Aramis Ammannato)
1) INKPRINT-BRAILLE DUPLICATING SET: This set consists of an ordinary typewriter with suitable alterations coupled with a braille typewriter.
This system makes it possible to reproduce in braille on a sheet of paper inserted in an embossing machine what is being written on an ordinary typewriter; thus the blind operator can read over on the first machine what he has been writing with the second.
The apparatus is made up by electro-magnetically coupling each typing key with the keys of a braille typewriter which reproduces in braille each inkprint letter. Moreover, a special device considerably increases the field of application of the set by enabling the typing keyboard to reproduce even those braille signs which have no equivalent in inkprint.
To this end the keyboard is fitted with an additional key providing
a third position in addition to the common ones for capital and small letters. It is self-evident that this key enables the operator to write, at typing speed, even those braille signs which cannot be really duplicated, such as the musical and abbreviation ones. The third position makes it possible also to obtain the braille sign corresponding to some double meanings of the same inkprint sign, such as in the case of "x", which may be used as a letter or as multiplication sign, while in braille there are two different signs.
This is the only electrically operating set in the world, and its advantages for the blind are as follows:
1) Automatic return to the starting point of the line for the braille typewriter;
2) possibility for the blind operator to read over immediately what he has been writing and thus to correct mistakes, if any. In the same way he can start typing again from the same point in case he has had to stop typing;
3) possibility of reaching high speeds in braille writing;
4) great uniformity of braille dots, comparable to that of printed braille; consequently an increased reading speed;
5) possibility to write braille even for those who do not know it. Therefore, any inkprint text can be given to an ordinary typist who by not making typing mistakes will be sure that the braille reproduction is also correct;
6) possibility for the blind to teach themselves typing. In effect, it is sufficient for them to learn the fingering from a pamphlet and then go on practising by themselves;
7) possibility of keeping the braille copy, directly readable and classifiable by the blind typist, of a letter written and sent out in inkprint by himself.
8) through the duplicating set a single typewriter can be coupled with any number of braille machines and as many copies can be obtained. Everyone can see the usefulness of this application for circulars, issues, school texts, musical scores etc. whose limited circulation would not cover printing costs.
2) BRAILLE TYPEWRITER. In order to develop the above set, since no available braille machine on the market, constructed to be operated by hand, was sufficiently robust to resist a prolonged effort imposed by electromagnetic operation, Mr. Francesconi was obliged to devise a more suitable one so that the value of the coupling (standard typewriter-braille machine) should not be seriously affected by continual repairs of an unsuitable braille machine.
Mr. Francesconi used electricity to enable the machine to perform a wide range of operations such as the electro-magnetic forward motion of the carriage with its automatic return to the starting point of the line (licence n. 622166), the continuous sound signal marking the end of line and the end of sheet, and others. Moreover, there are the the following possible mechanical operations and devices:
The Braille typewriter can be operated both coupled with the duplicating machine and independently by means of a special button keyboard.
There have been several difficulties to overcome to reach such results; one of these was the immobilisation of the sheet in order to obtain interline and interpoint embossing, expecially interpoint, for the reversed sheet must be displaced by 125/100 mm. both vertically and horizontally, with few hundredths of tolerance, since under an international convention the centers of braille dots in every sign are 250/100 mm. distant from each other in both senses and this distance is reduced by the thickness of the dot.
The prototypes so far constructed and sold for demonstration purposes both in Italy (2) and abroad: Holland (2), South Africa (1), America (1), France (1), Belgium (1), can write interpoint braille only on half a sheet, but a recent improvement made it possible on an entire sheet.
Moreover the INKPRINT-BRAILLE DUPLICATING SET can be used by a sighted teacher for fast communication with a class of deaf-blind pupils who can read braille. This is possible by placing the ordinary typewriter on the teacher desk and linking it by wire with as many braille typewriters (placed one on each pupil's desk) as there are pupils in the classroom. The pupil can read the braille immediately because the embossing takes place like with a Perkins brailer. In the same way the single braille typewriter can be utilized by a blind teacher since its special button keyboard is separated from the machine itself and linked with it by wire, so that the braille typewriter can be operated at distance by the special button keyboard.
An-other feature of the braille typewriter is its three additional buttons (each of which corresponds to the 1-4, 2-5, 3-6 dots of the braille system) which enable a person to operate it with a single hand, which makes the machine usable for many multiply handicapped blind people.
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Memorial Record Set: An adequate supply remains of the Memorial Record set, "Jacobus tenBroek--The Man and the Movement". Those desiring to purchase one or more of this five-record set can do so by sending $3.50 for each set requested to Kenneth Jernigan, President, National Federation of the Blind, 524 Fourth Street, Des Moines, Iowa 50309.
Names of Affiliate Presidents: State and local affiliates are urged to send in the names and addresses of State and local presidents to the Berkeley Office, National Federation of the Blind, 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708. This information is essential if Bulletins and other announcements are to be received promptly.
The Braille Monitor: There is no charge for the Braille Monitor, but we will be glad to receive contributions to be sent to the Berkeley Office. There has been some confusion with respect to the mailing lists, but this is now well in hand. Requests for The Monitor--braille, ink print, or tape--should be sent to the Berkeley Office, 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708.
Communicate with the Editor: The Editor of The Braille Monitor requests each state and local President to write him, giving the name and address of one person in each locality, as well as for the State, who will serve as local and State reporters for The Monitor. These names and addresses, as well as the reports, should be sent to Editor, The Braille Monitor, 4651 Mead Avenue, Sacramento, California 95822.
The NFB Song: At the 1968 convention of the NFB a committee was appointed to consider entries so that an official NFB song can be selected at next year's convention. Those desiring to submit entries should write to Thomas Bickford, Chairman, The Song Committee, 2714 Ordway Street N. W., Apt. 1, Washington, D.C. 20008.
Scholarships: The NFB Scholarship Program is actively going forward. Anyone who wishes to apply for a scholarship, or to suggest the name of a candidate other than himself for such an award, should write to Russell Kletzing, 4604 Briarwood Drive, Sacramento, California 95821.
Hot Line to the Deaf Blind: The Twin Vision Project of the American Brotherhood for the Blind publishes in Braille a news digest and summary called "Hot Line to the Deaf-Blind". Anyone who knows of a deaf-blind person who reads Braille and might enjoy receiving this publication should write to Jean Dyon Norris, Director, Twin Vision Project, 18440 Topham Street, Tarzana, California 91356.
Recordings of Dr. tenBroek's Speeches: The NFB does not have any usable recordings of speeches made by Dr. Jacobus tenBroek earlier than 1952. If anyone has such recordings, in any form, please send them to Kenneth Jernigan, President, National Federation of the Blind, 524 Fourth Street, Des Moines, Iowa 50309. Mr. Jernigan would also appreciate receiving any usable recordings of addresses which Dr. tenBroek made to State conventions, irrespective of the year in which the address was delivered.
Like other corporations, the National Federation of the Blind has its corporate seal. Like other fraternal organizations, the NFB has its pin--a reproduction in miniature of its corporate seal. This lovely NFB identification consists of a circle trisected by a superimposed triangle. The three sections of the circle thus made carry the words which symbolize Federation philosophy--Security, Equality, Opportunity. The triangle bears the initials NFB. The triangle and the circle are blue enamel and all lettering is in gold, a very handsome item indeed. The pin measures five eighths of an inch in diameter and is available in pin and lapel types at $1.50. Pins can be obtained from the Berkeley Office, 2652 Shasta Road, Berkeley, California 94708.
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Empire Association of the Blind
Labor Day Weekend
Syracuse, New York
Kentucky Federation of the Blind
September 13 and 14
South Carolina Aurora Club
September 13, 14, and 15
Heart of Spartanburg Hotel
Spartanburg, South Carolina
Michigan Council of the Blind
September 28 and 29
Associated Blind of Massachusetts
October 4, 5, and 6
Free State Federation
October 12 and 13
California Council of the Blind
October 4, 5, and 6
Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel
New Jersey Council of the Blind
October 26 and 27
Asbury Park, New Jersey
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Blind children "see" animals at Boston zoo. Some twenty-two blind children from Maine were recently jetted to Boston to visit the zoo and to touch some of the animals. The trip was part of a program at the Blind Children's Resource Center in Portland, designed to teach blind children how to live normally in a world that sees.
Blind claimants get special help. The Social Security Administration recently placed a Braille electric typewriter in operation at its National Headquarters in Baltimore. The machine will be used to provide blind employees with the same written communications all other employees receive, and to answer inquiries from sightless claimants of social security benefits.
The University of California recently produced a 16 mm. black and white sound film which runs twenty-five minutes and is called "From Here to There". It demonstrates the problems of the blind in moving about for their sighted schoolmates and for the general public. It is concerned with the development of incidental and specific skills in orientation and mobility of blind children. A chronological approach is used, beginning with the blind child as he enters school and continuing through high school.
The Progressive Blind of Missouri wishes to purchase two IBM electric typewriters for writing Braille. One machine will be used by a Braille transcriber and the other by blind persons. In an effort to raise funds for this purpose, an appeal letter was mailed to churches, organizations, business firms and individuals. The machines cost $490 each. Anyone wishing to participate should contact the Progressive Blind, Box 4950, Kansas City, Missouri 64120.
The Division for the Blind, Library of Congress, announces a change in its talking book tape standard. Effective January 1, 1969 sub-masters will be distributed only on 7-inch reels using 4-track monophonic recording at 1-7/8 inches per second speed. This change is being made to achieve the following advantages:
1. The changing and threading of tape required of the reader will be reduced to one-half the present requirement.
2. Twelve hours of playing time will be available from a single 7-inch reel of tape. Twelve hours will in most cases provide a complete book on one reel.
3. The continuous playing time without an interruption will be increased to three hours. This feature is a significant advantage for the physically handicapped reader.
4. Storage area for tape labeling and handling will be reduced by at least one-half.
Blind center is proposed. State Senator Leroy Bendheim (Virginia) told the Alexandria Federation of the Blind that he plans to obtain a state-approved center for the blind in the Alexandria area. In addition, Senator Bendheim told of efforts made at the recent session of the Virginia General Assembly toward help for the blind. Mrs. Dorothy Foulkrod, newly elected president of the Virginia Federation of the Blind, was installing officer.
Blind author has novel accepted. William Sheehan, blind elevator operator in the City Hall in Newark, New Jersey has had his first novel accepted for publication. Soon to be published will be his book, "Journey to Freedom", a Civil War novel. Sheehan gained all of his education through night school--from junior college, through college and a law degree. Sheehan, who is fifty years of age, hopes to pass the New Jersey bar examinations so that eventually he will "graduate" from the type of jobs he has held at the City Hall for twenty-eight years--operating a snack bar and running elevators.
Federationist to seek office. Albert Gonzales, well known New Mexico federationist and prominent Santa Fe attorney, has announced his candidacy for the office of Santa Fe County magistrate. Gonzales is a graduate of Georgetown University Law School and has practiced law in Santa Fe for the past twenty-seven years. He formerly served as United States commissioner at Los Alamos as well as police judge. He served two terms as state representative, two terms as county commissioner, and served on the Santa Fe city school board during which time Gonzales School was named for him. He has also been a regent of New Mexico State University. Gonzales was founder of the New Mexico Federation of the Blind and all who attended the NFB convention in Santa Fe in 1959 will remember him and his gracious wife Virginia.
Hope undergoes eye treatment. Bob Hope, the famous comedian, recently underwent photo-coagulation treatment in an effort to correct a recurring ailment in his left eye. The treatment consists of directing a laser beam--a powerful, hot light--into the eye to cauterize a ruptured blood vessel and thus halt hemorrhaging.
During May, fifteen members of the Twin County Chapter of the Free State Federation of the Blind met for dinner and then went to the Jefferson Blair Recreation Center, Silver Spring, Maryland, where they held their regular monthly meeting. Officers elected were: Mrs. Alan Schlank, President; Wesley Williams, First Vice President; Marilyn Brandt, Second Vice President; Alan Schlank, Secretary; and Thomas Whoolery, Treasurer. Following consideration it was decided that Marilyn Brandt should chair a committee to arrange for speaking engagements for Federationists to appear before classes of student ophthalmologists in the medical colleges in the vicinity of Washington, D. C. to explain blindness, the problems and potentialities of blind persons, and to suggest action that could and should be taken by ophthalmologists when their patients lose their vision.
The Capital Chapter of the NFB held a dinner meeting in Washington, D. C. as the high point activity of the affiliate's promotion of White Cane Week. Mr. Kenneth Pohlmann, rehabilitation consultant with the Health and Welfare Fund of the United Mine Workers of America was the speaker. He described the methods employed and the pressures exerted by the mine workers' union to improve state vocational rehabilitation programs for injured and disabled miners. There was a general consensus that the organized blind might well profit from the experiences of the organized mine workers.
A man who has been partly blind in South Africa has regained his full sight through a transplant cornea of a baboon's eye. The man, identified only as a European, had been blind in the eye for ten years. The patient can now read newspapers with the operated eye. It is believed that this is the first such operation of its kind.
The Greater Lawrence (Mass.) Association of the Blind elected the following Officers for the ensuing year: John Borrelli, President; Paul Lasconde, Vice President; Josephine Benoit, Recording Secretary; Domenic Fiato, Corresponding Secretary; Marie Hadley, Financial Secretary; Lorraine Demers, Sighted Secretary; Mario Sapienza, Treasurer; Victor Jedrey, Seargeant At Arms. Cecile Ebbin and Victor Jedrey were made members of the Executive Board.
Some interesting findings resulted from the 1966 Social Security Survey of Disabled Adults. More than one-sixth of the civilian population of working age were limited in their ability to work because of a chronic health condition or impairment in 1966. Public income-support programs provided income for a majority of the severely disabled, but two-fifths of the severely disabled men are neither employed nor receiving wage-replacement income. Public programs designed to offset the wage losses of disability paid out more than $8 billion in cash benefits and assistance to the disabled and their dependents in 1966. Wage-replacement benefits provide only a fraction of the income available from earnings, however, and they are in many cases below minimum budgetary standards of adequacy.
The National Society for the Prevention of Blindness believes that half of all blindness is preventable. In its Annual Report, recently released, the following is contained:
At the present time an estimated 1,682,100 adults over the age of thirty-five are threatened with blindness from glaucoma, the second leading cause of blindness in our nation. Glaucoma cannot yet be cured, but if detected and treated early enough, it can be controlled and further visual loss prevented, either by drugs or surgery.
Senile cataract remains the greatest single cause of blindness in the country. It also continues to offer the greatest chance for restoration of useful vision. While surgery is the only possible treatment at this time, it is safe and effective in more than 95 times out of 100--a remarkable achievement.
The American Association of Instructors of the Blind will conduct an Institute for Guidance Counselors of Visually Handicapped Youth, November 11-15, in Austin, Texas.
Is the long cane long enough? Harold M. Schneck Jr. writing in The New York Times, Friday, June 28, 1968 says:
"The day of the Buck Rogers flying belt seemed a large hop closer today as engineers described a jet belt designed to propel a man for miles over rooftops, treetops or any other kind of terrain.
The new belt, powered by a miniature jet engine, will be flight-tested this summer to conclude a $3-million development program for the military. It grows from earlier rocket belt research."
A tempest in a teapot cost the British European Airways $96,000, when workers struck because canteen tea had been raised from 4 pence (4 cents) a cup to 4 1/2 pence, the magazine Aviation Week &t Space Technology reports. The result was that the line had to cancel 76 flights and divert 4,000 passengers to other airlines. The price rise was rescinded after seven hours.
Byron Eguiguren, romance language department chairman at the Hadley School for the Blind, is preparing studies to guide blind students for careers in foreign language interpretation.
The Hadley program will train blind college students and graduates with bachelor's degrees. Freelance interpreting and interpreting on a permanent basis are career possibilities for blind linguists.
Stacy V. Jones writing in The New York Times, Saturday, May 11, 1968 says:
"Two Californians have invented an automatic bookmark, as described in Patent 3,381,654, it consists of a strip of plastic or old motion picture film in which two triangular tongues have been cut.
One tongue grips enough pages to hold the device in place and the other tongue lays its tip on the margin of the page being read. As the page is turned, the tongue moves to the next one.
The patentees are Ross F. Hupp of Santa Barbara and William R. Gallagher of Glendale."
Philip H. Dougherty Writing in The New York Times, Monday, June 24, 1968 says:
"In the quiet recesses of Philadelphia's Frank H. Fleer Corporation, known by thinking men of the nation for its high-quality bubble gum, has come still another boon to a waiting mankind.
It would appear to be the ultimate consumer-viewer weapon. They call it the Zulu Blow Gun and it's a 6-inch plastic tube (with pocket clip) that shoots one-inch, suction tip darts especially designed for sticking to TV screens. They work fine on commercials, too. Sort of an anti-message missile. And only a dime."
Perry Sundquist has come home--in a manner of speaking. Besides being Editor of the MONITOR for the NFB he has taken a staff position with the American Brotherhood for the Blind as Welfare Consultant. Before he was appointed Chief of the Division for the Blind in the California Department of Social Welfare some twenty-seven years ago. Perry for a number of years served the American Brotherhood as Executive Secretary.
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