Message from President Mark Riccobono
This is a time to reflect and be grateful for all we have been given. The National Federation of the Blind achieves a great deal every year because we receive support in a variety of ways. Our members, volunteers, donors, and staff all make us the leading membership and advocacy organization of blind people. It takes all of us to make sure that blindness is not the characteristic that defines blind people or their futures.
If you already support the Federation, whether you give your time or your resources, we need you now more than ever before, and we appreciate you and your contributions greatly. Saying thank you does not fully express my personal gratitude for your contributions to this organization. I know in my heart that we are making a better future for my two blind daughters and for all blind children who will grow up knowing that they can live the lives they want and make their dreams a reality. I cannot thank our supporters enough for being a part of raising expectations all year long.
Let us move into 2022 and build the National Federation of the Blind together. If you can do so, reflect on your contributions and pledge to continue or grow your support for our work together. If you have not yet committed to be a part of our movement and support us, I whole-heartedly invite you to join us in actively participating in the National Federation of the Blind.
Mark A. Riccobono, President
National Federation of the Blind
Why Be a Holiday Hero?
What motivates people to support the National Federation of the Blind? Contributors to the National Federation of the Blind give for a plethora of reasons—most commonly, they express that they care and want to make things better for the next generation of blind people.
One contributor to our recent matching campaign said, “What you do is so unique. I want to help.” Another long-time supporter said, “I give in support of my lifelong friends at the NFB who continue to change the world.”
Often our supporters tell us that they knew a blind person who they admire, and that is why they are motivated to give. We recently surveyed our donors who shared that they give to help blind people follow their dreams, because they understand the impact of the Federation, to improve training for blind people, and more. Our donors want to help blind people raise expectations and live the lives they want to live.
Why do you support the National Federation of the Blind? To give back or pay it forward, to help the community, to honor a blind person, or for a different reason? Whatever your motivation, thank you for being a holiday hero and making everything that we do possible. If you have not yet had a chance to contribute and are in a position to do so, please visit our donate page. If you have contributed to help us meet our end of year goal, we truly appreciate your help and your partnership.
Latest News at the NFB
Applications Are Open for Our Scholarship Program
We invest in the future of blind people. The National Federation of the Blind's annual scholarship program is the largest of its kind in the nation for blind scholars. Along with cash awards, the program provides funding to travel to and attend our national convention with the opportunity to network with more blind students, blind mentors, and many blind professionals. Applications opened December 1. Learn more about our scholarship program.
Department of Justice Asks People with Disabilities to Share Experiences Regarding Wait-Time Fees
The US Department of Justice (DOJ) is gathering information from individuals with disabilities who have been charged wait-time fees by Uber. Contact DOJ at [email protected], 833-591-0425 (toll-free), or 202-305-6786. For more information, visit the Justice Department's news release regarding Uber overcharges.
Netflix Provides Audio Description on Popular Program in Response to Blind Community Request
NFB requested that English audio descriptions be added for Squid Game, a popular 2021 series produced in South Korea, and Netflix delivered. Netflix’s stated policy has been to provide audio description only in the program’s original language, but feedback has led to reconsideration in this case and others. Federationists thank Netflix for their commitment to inclusion by working with the nation’s blind.
Transformation to Competitive Integrated Employment Act Introduced in US Senate
On Thursday, November 18, Senators Bob Casey (D-PA) and Steve Daines (R-MT) introduced the Transformation to Competitive Integrated Employment Act in the Senate (S. 3238). The Act if passed will phase out the payment of subminimum wages to people with disabilities. Sheila Leigland, an active NFB member from Montana and a constituent of Senator Daines, is featured in a video promoting the legislation on Senator Daines’s official Senate website.
Take Action This Month
Throughout our local chapters and state affiliates to our national headquarters and diverse committees, the National Federation of the Blind is an organization of collective action. Here’s what you can do to get involved this month.
- Help us meet our end of year fundraising goal and support our free white cane program, Braille literacy, employment initiatives, and more by contributing to the NFB.
- Watch our newest thank-you video to learn about the work that you help us do.
- Explore the December issue of the Braille Monitor, our flagship publication.
- Access the Self-Advocacy in Employment Toolkit.
We certainly are a busy organization. Don’t miss these upcoming events, workshops, and deadlines.
- January 4, 2022: Presidential Release, 8:00 p.m. Eastern, CC and Spanish translation available
- January 25, 2022: Accessibility Boutique, Streaming Services
- February 7-February 10, 2022: Washington Seminar, Washington, DC
- March 24-March 25, 2022: Jacobus tenBroek Disability Law Symposium, Baltimore, MD
- March 31, 2022: Scholarship Application deadline
- July 5-10, 2022: National Convention, New Orleans, LA