[Missouri-l] Fwd: [acb-l] Cutting Services to Blind consumers
message from my IPHONE
terrieiphone at gmail.com
Sun Feb 26 05:28:06 CST 2012
Begin forwarded message:
From: "Darla Rogers" <djrogers0628 at gmail.com>
Date: February 25, 2012 5:29:56 PM CST
To: "'Acb List'" <acb-l at acb.org>
Subject: [acb-l] Cutting Services to Blind consumers
maybe because people think of only totally blind, and they further believe there is this mythical "they" who take care of our needs, state assistance isn't required?
The truth, in fact, is that blind people need specialized services because one sense is totally affected, and if one is totally blind, there is not one device that can take the place of vision, and because we low-incidence, and Medicare doesn't cover our devices and because they believe many aren't willing to work, they (the politicians) believe that cuts to these services aren't affecting people's lives.
When we can, I believe it is probably a good thing to visit our representatives, in person, so they can witness firsthand what blindness is and explain to them, there are more blind and visually-impaired people than they believe and that offering the specialized services blind people need is cheaper and more humane than relegating older blind people to nursing facilities and relegating our children to be uneducated.
many representatives probably aren't really aware of just how independently a blind person could live when the proper skills training and equipment--it is a whole paradigm shift which seems to be shifting back to the old stereotypes of who blind people really are.
I am taking as little out of the state coffers as possible to meet some needs I still have to gain some skills that will make me more marketable to an employer, but the people who serve us have to believe in us, too and not just be concerned with job security, as there is probably never enough outreach, so, in fact, the blind population is probably more underserved than even most of us know.
It is my hope that, as we continue to educate, by being who we are and speaking up to help others, maybe we can convince our representatives that separate agencies, especially when they hire people who are trained to offer the specialized services and believe in their clients, the money is better spent.
Under general agencies, even if they have counselors specifically assigned to blind clients, most don't have money specially set aside for the products blind people need in order to succeed whatever that means to an individual.
When possible, services/products that can be obtained through less expensive sources should be done, but for working-age blind people who want to work, sadly but truthfully, our assistive technology just can't keep up with cutting edge technology released every day with no consideration of their usability except for sighted people with no physical limitations.
And, I'll wager, the bureaucracies aren't much smaller putting all disabled people under the same umbrella, though I am sure some services--administratively--could be consolidated.
Darla J. Rogers
djrogers0628 at gmail.com
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