The National Federation of the Blind knows that blindness is not the characteristic that defines you or your future. Every day we raise the expectations of blind people, because low expectations create obstacles between blind people and our dreams. Since 1940, the members of the National Federation of the Blind have come together in state affiliates and local chapters to share the real life experiences, practical techniques, and innovative strategies we use to transform our dreams into reality. In 2004, we established the National Federation of the Blind Jernigan Institute as the first research and training facility developed and directed by blind people.
As we gear up for Washington Seminar here at the Jernigan Institute, we field lots of phone calls from you, our dedicated members, asking what you can do to lend a hand. In addition to recruiting members and getting involved in your community, you can help in a big way just by typing your name. That’s right; your name is all you need to do your part. We’ve created a We the People petition to get President Obama’s attention. In 2010, he promised to ensure equal access for people with disabilities, by issuing regulations that will apply the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to the web. While these regulations wouldn’t change the web directly, they will give guidance to webpage developers on how to make their sites accessible for all. You can find the text to the petition below.
After fourteen months of negotiating with the American Council on Education (ACE), the time has come to seek alternative avenues to secure equal access to electronic instructional materials at institutions of higher education. The following is a letter President Riccobono sent to ACE President, Molly Corbett Broad, informing her that while we are still open to dialogue, we will not sit idly on this critical issue to blind and print-disabled students. We will reengage with Congress to find champions for students with disabilities in order to ensure that we have equal access in the classroom and beyond, so that blind and print-disabled students can live the lives they want.
SENT VIA EMAIL
December 10, 2015
Molly Corbett Broad, President
American Council on Education
One Dupont Circle NW
Washington, DC 20036
It’s that time of year. The temperature starts to drop, our calendars fill up with holiday party invites, and we scramble to find the best turkey recipes online. It’s also the time of year when the spirit of the season inspires us to give.
We know that this time of year is also hectic, so we’ve rounded up the top six ways to donate to the National Federation of the Blind.
Federationists know that we are working to allow 100 percent service disabled veterans to participate in the military’s Space Available program, which allows active duty and retired military personnel to travel on Department of Defense flights when space is available. This week our cause gained a great champion in Senator Bob Dole. Senator Dole, a decorated World War II veteran, longtime Senate majority leader, and staunch advocate for veterans and Americans with disabilities, wrote to Senator John McCain, who chairs the Senate Armed Services Committee, asking him to incorporate language into the National Defense Authorization Act which would finally allow veterans with disabilities to enjoy the privilege already granted to their active-duty and retired colleagues.
By Lisa Irving
NFB of California, San Diego Chapter
Have you ever felt like there's no way one person can make a difference when it comes to influencing a member of Congress? That's how I used to feel before I became part of the collective voice of the National Federation of the Blind (NFB)last year at the annual Washington Seminar. Now I'm no longer overwhelmed and intimidated at the prospect of writing, calling, or meeting with my congressional representatives.
In April of 2015, the NFB learned of a pending class action settlement between David New et al and Lululemon USA, Inc., which resolved claims pertaining to inaccessible touchscreen payment systems. The settlement proposed to unfairly waive the rights of blind customers without due process or compensation. To protect the rights of blind people, the NFB objected to the fairness of the proposed class settlement. Our objections were heard and the settlement has since been amended so that it does not waive our rights without due process. As part of the amended proposed settlement, the NFB has agreed to post the class action notice. Please see the notice here.
By vote of the Braille Authority of North America (BANA), the United States will shift to the Unified English Braille (UEB) code in 2016. UEB has many benefits, including easier translation between Braille and print and the elimination of the need to learn a separate “computer Braille” code. BANA did not see any benefit, however, in moving away from the Nemeth Braille Code for Mathematics and Science Notation, which has been the standard code for math and science materials in the United States for over forty years. As a result, BANA recommends the adoption of UEB along with the continued use of the Nemeth code, and has issued guidelines on how these two codes can work together. It has come to the attention of the National Federation of the Blind, however, that some states are moving or considering moving to unified math symbols instead of the Nemeth code.