Braille Monitor                                                   March 2010

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Legislative Agenda of Blind Americans:
Priorities for the 111th Congress, Second Session

The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) is the oldest and largest organization of blind people in the United States. As the Voice of the Nation’s Blind, we represent the collective views of blind people throughout society. All of our leaders and the vast majority of our members are blind, but anyone can participate in our movement. There are an estimated 1.3 million blind people in the United States, and every year approximately 75,000 Americans become blind. The social and economic consequences of blindness affect not only blind people, but also our families, our friends, and our coworkers.

Three legislative initiatives demand the immediate attention of the 111th Congress in its second session:

1. We urge Congress to ensure the safety of blind and other pedestrians by passing the Pedestrian Safety Enhancement Act. This legislation would require the U.S. Secretary of Transportation to:

2. We urge Congress to work with blind Americans to create a Technology Bill of Rights for the Blind that mandates that consumer electronics, home appliances, kiosks, and electronic office technology provide user interfaces that are accessible through nonvisual means. This legislation should:

3. We urge Congress to promote and facilitate the transition by blind Americans from recipients of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits to income-earning, tax-paying, productive members of the American workforce by enacting legislation to:

For more information about these priorities, please consult the attached fact sheets.

Blind Americans need your help to achieve our goals of economic security, increased opportunity, and full integration into American society on a basis of equality. Enactment of these legislative proposals will represent important steps toward reaching these goals. We need the help and support of each member of Congress. Our success benefits not only us, but the whole of America as well. In this time of national economic insecurity, these measures will contribute to increasing the tax base and encouraging the purchase of consumer goods.

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