Monday, December 22, 2008
I do not see any reason to do anything further with that audist. She deserves to burn in hell for her lies.
Monday, December 15, 2008
Honorable Representative Sara Lampe:
(Editor's Note: Missouri State Representative - Sara Lampe is planning some kind of investigation into this matter.)
This is an appreciation note to let you know that I am pleased that you are taking the time to look into matters concerning the deaf consumers of mental health services. It is imperative that the Missouri Department of Mental Health follow what the deaf community is requesting.
The past few years, the Department of Mental Health (DMH) has been window dressing and playing shell game with us. Whenever we need services, we end up losing the sight of what is to be delivered to us. There is always someone passing the buck.
Not too long ago, the program was being set up by Steve Hamerdinger who had the right answers to the needs of deaf mental health needs. He is a well respected authority on mental health issues facing the deaf community. He is a brilliant fellow who have foreseen the needs of the deaf community and is able to provide solutions to the problems. He has successfully implemented the same model for Missouri in Alabama.
When it came to budget request of a couple million dollars to meet the needs of the Missouri Deaf community, the people at the top chose to shut down the program and kicked all the staff that were hired by Steve Hamgerdinger out. There were no management succession afterwards. There were no plans to provide outside programs or any follow ups. They simply threw us out on the streets.
Then came Barry Critchfield - he is an expert on deaf mental health. He is internationally recognized for his expertise in that field. The same for Steve Hamerdinger. Barry Critchfield did try to put together the same program he administered in South Carolina. It is also a successful program.
Tell me why did Missouri Department of Mental Health turn deaf ears on both well respected authorities on deaf mental health??? This raises a stink up to the heavens. DMH ought to be investigated.
They chose to play with the funds and only hired the interpreters to the tune of $539,000.00 as of the past year according to their admission at the conference on October 12, 2008. Most of deaf community were in shock when we found out the cost. We recommended that they re-budget the funds to hire 4 deaf mental health professionals at $40,000.00 each. It is only $160,000.00 total and with some benefits thrown in as much as $15 to 20 thousand. There is still some money left to use interpreting services.
They continue to drag their feet in this matter.
Unfortunately the interpreters cannot be true advocates of mental health system. They are "locked" in one role as communication facilitator. The RID Code of Ethics does not allow a certified interpreter to step out of its role in many situations.
This is where we, as deaf advocates, intervene in the interests of our Deaf community. We are not happy and not satisfied with the present status of the DMH. They continue to play games with us and continue hurting us more day by day. We have been without mental health services so long. Many of us are suffering. We are falling through cracks of the service delivery system.
We have constitutional rights to access the mental health services. I have a mental picture of Missouri Department of Mental Health sticking baby pacifers in deaf community's mouths. The current status of DMH does not provide any programs or services that help deaf consumers be self-sufficent. It is audism at work. Audism is where the hearing people make "illegal" decisions for the deaf consumers. This is not at par with the satisfication of the deaf consumers. The people in DMH and the community are not qualified to meet the needs of the deaf consumers.
The fact of matter is that the hearing people have no patience in dealing with deaf consumers. It is considered that there are 98 percent of hearing population having no patience with deaf people in communities. It is an educated guess at this point but it has been happening around the country.
You do need a deaf professional to handle deaf cases. You cannot have a hearing person to handle deaf cases. It is like hiring a man to handle abused women cases? It is like hiring a white person to handle african american cases. It can go on and on.
It is like according to late Gallaudet University President Dr. Merrill, he stated that you cannot hire Japanese teachers to teach English class. It will be chaos.
This is where and why we are requesting that DMH understand our position in having a right person to handle the case management.
I did report to the DMH Commissioners at the top that I was not satisfied with Keith Schafer and his administration including Heskett and Winslow. The chair of Commission wrote me a certified letter stating that he was happy with the current staffing. They just recently hired an interpreter to handle mental health cases. It is a BIG JOKE to us in the deaf community. This is like pulling us down further.
Let me state for the record - they are practicing discrimination loud and clear. They are in violation of Americans with Disabilities Act as well as human rights. I have brought this matter up with the legal profession and state agencies. Everyone's hands continue to be tied.....
Where can we go next?
We will need your attention to this matter of following up on the needs of deaf community.
Before I close, I want to express a bit about myself. I grew up being a suicidal person. I have tried to end my life numerous times as I have been victim of abuses. I have never received proper mental health services to help me stop going to the dark side. I have been to dark side numerous times where I was close to death. I have tried cutting my wrists. I have tried having noose around my neck. I have tried suffocating in plastic bag. I have taken pills to overdose. I have lived dangerously during 20s and 30s.
Since I am a self-starter and self-helper, I take the time to read materials and follow up with a few qualified professionals. I have learned to turn 180 degrees away from the disastrous path. I have learned to use coping skills from the last program. It was 20 years ago that I made that last attempt to commit suicide. So far so good I am doing and coping! I want to stay alive to continue to advocate for the rights of deaf consumers of mental health.
I am working on a documentary about deaf and suicide. I have seen few deaf committing suicide. I have helped one person from committing suicide while in college and failed to help another. He hung himself in the woods behind the college cafeteria. It burns in my mind for more than 30 years. The problems we have are only temporary. Tomorrow brings on new hopes and challenges. This is what the suicidal ones need to know. This is why I am working on "SUICIDE: A LONELY JOURNEY TO THE DARK SIDE"
This is where you can step in and help us set the program right on the track to meet the needs of deaf community! You may use my story for your journey in resolving the problems. We are humbly asking you to end the audism at the Missouri Department of Mental Health.
Thank you for your time and consideration!
a private citizen
St. Louis, Missouri
"Tough times never last, tough people do!"
December 15, 2008
Monday, December 1, 2008
I want to express my disappointment, disatisfication and disgust at MY IP RELAY. They did something stupid this morning! I was making a call to answer survey questions to be paid. The agent did a dumb thing... RO80211F - she fucked up the call when she was going to transfer to another agent... and this one - RO80212F did not follow up and hang up the call. How do you think I feel? I am very pissed at both agents at MY IP RELAY!!! I am ready to terminate the service and will NEVER again use their service!
So it is dumbest thing they did today!
Any of you have problems with them??? Let me know!!!!!
Unhappy user of MY IP RELAY
Saturday, November 22, 2008
VEDITZ RIDICULED BELL AS ONE OF THE PHAROAHS
In the early 1900's, George Veditz expressed concern that, "A new race of pharoahs that knew not Joseph" are taking over the land and many of our American schools. They do not understand signs for they cannot sign. They proclaim that signs are worthless and of no help to the deaf. Enemies of sign language - they are enemies of the true welfare of the deaf.
Methods used to ban the use of sign language in classrooms were barbarian and that was the result of the problems throughout the 20th and 21st century. In order to concentrate on speech methods and oral methods, the teachers would resort to do these following things. They asked for cooperation of parents. They refused to hire deaf teachers, even their own products. Deaf children were told that using sign language was bad and degrading. They were told that it would prevent them from growing up "normal" and that they would not be able to live in a hearing world if they relied on sign language.
Suppression methods were used in forcing the deaf children to sit on their hands, put the hands in desk out of sight, slapping the child's mouth with a chalky eraser, tie the child's hands behind the back and used rulers to slam on the palms, they even used soap to put in mouths of any stubborn deaf child, they even put hands under scalding hot water, they even force the child to disrobe and also many other barbarian acts against poor deaf children. It will take entire length of column to describe the horrors. It is being described in the upcoming film, "THE BLUE RIBBON STORIES" to be out by Fall 2009.
DEAF HOLOCAUST - A debate to start with...
You can realize what that word means. It is often scary to think how hearing people remain hell-bent on eliminating the deaf from the human race by any methods imaginable in their quest for pathological actions. Deaf people has been around for thousands of years and the society continues to think otherwise.
We, the Deaf Advocates, leaders, friends, relatives, lovers, families, etc do not see the need for elimination of deaf. The hearing people continue to be so pathological in that sense they are hurting and tampering on our rights in life.
It is time to STAND UP and say, "Enough is enough!"
**adapted for today's blog from Jan/Feb 1996 - St. Louis DEAF ADVOCATE - FUTURE SHOCK: DEAF HOLOCAUST - Paul Kiel's editorial, Deaf Heritage by Jack Gannon and other notes from the old file of Jan/Feb 1996.
Friday, November 7, 2008
DEAF IMAGES CASTING CALL:
20 to 25 people for upcoming documentary - St. Louis, Missouri
Deaf Images is conducting a casting call for men, women and children for a documentary called "THE BLUE RIBBON STORIES"
My goal is to finish this documentary by June 2009. I am done with the storyboards and preparing the scripts for each actor to perform in my upcoming documentary. I will be needing some to do the storytelling of past incidents the last three millenniums.
More details to follow! I am a poor artist so give me chance to see what works out! =)
I will be sure to get you a copy of the video.
Any ? - ask away - e-mail to me at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Mr. Todd Schaible, CEO and President :email@example.com
Burrell Behavorial Health
1300 Bradford Parkway
Springfield, MO 65804
Dear Mr. Schaible:
It has come to my attention that there are issues at Burrell Behavorial Health.
There has been lack of equal communication access and lack of professional mental health services for the deaf. The former and current patients have expressed frustrations in handling the real needs of the deaf patients. Your decision to break up families with different counselors are not helping as none of those counselors have expertise in handling the deaf mental health issues.
I have been receiving letters from those people using your services and there is a need to get the ball rolling to meet the needs of the deaf patients at Burrell Behavorial Health. I will be coming down to your facility to review these matters with you.
I simply want to see equal communication access opportunities and see a program of having mental health services for the deaf. I will be happy to provide sensitivity training for your staff to enable them to know the proper steps next time a deaf patient enters the doors of Burell Behavorial Health.
There will be a community meeting later that day in Springfield after I check facts with you. This is to help me know what to do before responding to what needs to be done to correct the wrongs at Burrell Behavorial Health. I certainly hope that you will rescind your decsions to allow the deaf patients a better and quality care. There are guidelines that can help your organization to do a better job in handling the deaf patients.
Please help us stop our deaf fellows from falling through the cracks of mental health programs!
- a private citizen -
St. Louis, MO
cc: William Sheppard (unable to get e-mail and did call to request at his home phone) Board of Director
Clifford Brown, Board of Director firstname.lastname@example.org
Fred Hall, Board of Director email@example.com
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
To: Mr. Robert H. Bezanson, President and CEO of CoxHealth: (his picture is enclosed above.)
This is to inform you of a former patient of yours that you are CEO of CoxHealth. Speaking of your affiliate a.k.a. Burrell Behavorial Health located in Springfield, Missouri, it is in a problematic stage. It is a mental health crisis for the Deaf community of Springfield, Missouri. I am asking you to take the time to read the letter I got from a patient of yours.
I am not bounded by HIPPA stuff so she asked me to spread this word. I am obliged as a Deaf Advocate to spread the truth beyond the walls of audism and colonialism. I am requesting that you act as CEO to resolve this matter. I am requesting the removal of Todd Schaible. He is responsible for problems brewing at Burrell Behavorial Health.
Here is the story -
A deaf patient from Springfield writes:
"When I asked you who I can write to, you helped me find some people. You understand that we need help. We need someone to listen and help us.
Our family went to Marcia Brewer as our counselor. We had family problems. We talked about how to communicate with our three hearing daughters, and about problems fighting in our marriage (we are both Deaf). It began to improve a little. The girls learned to respect each other and their parents instead of fighting. Marcia showed us how to not let them take advantage of their Deaf parents. (They were not happy about that!) We practiced how to sit down and discuss things instead of yelling. The children learned how to write out what happened so we could understand their story and decide how to punish.
Then all of the sudden they stopped us. They told us we had to pick one person to see Marcia. The other people in my family must go see another counselor with an interpreter.
We decided not to do that way. We did not feel comfortable with a strange new counselor and different interpreters. We don't know them. We had to start all over again from the beginning with a new counselor, talk about our past. The other counselors really don't know about Deaf situations. Like we had a rope down in the well, and were starting to climb out. Then the CEO decided to cut the rope and let us fall back in.
We noticed hearing people did not have to do it that way - split up their families in the middle of counseling. Why did he cut only DEAF ropes? I said this in the newspaper, but he said it is not true. It did happen to us. It is true.
Our problems got worse in our family. My husband and I fight a lot. The kids got fed up and don't want to be around us. They moved out to live with Grandma. I don't know if my husband and I will stay together long. The bank is ready to foreclose on our house. I have so much depression, but no help. I am working and trying to take care of my children.
I am sending you this letter to complain about Burrell. They discriminated on Deaf. Marcia resigned when all the other Deaf left too. Now we need a counselor but there is no counselor there that signs and knows more about Deaf situations.
I wrote a letter to Phil McClendon at the Mental Health Commission. I asked him why this happened to us (Deaf). He sent it to Monica Hoy. She wrote me a letter Burrell always has one counselor for one family member only. But that is a lie. Hearing families can work with the same counselor! Now the CEO is acting like he did not do anything wrong, like he didn't say that to us. But I have the letter.
It feels like when hearing people complain, someone listens to them. They get a chance to speak, and get an answer. When Deaf people like me complain, it is like a tiny tap that nobody notices. I told Mr. McClendon this terrible thing happened. And I get a big lie back. "Don't pay attention to her...she is deaf...just tell her anything and she will go away..." I do not mean this against Mr. McClendon personally.
Our family is falling apart. We need help really bad. We are not the only ones. We are proud, and smart, and capable, just like any hearing family. We are willing to do our part, to change to make our situation better. We are not helpless beggars. When hearing people are in crisis, they can go to a counselor and still feel respect for themselves. They don't have to beg and say "OH THANK YOU for helping us!" We want to get some help, work on our problems, and have a better life. We did that at Burrell, and then it stopped.
WILL ANYONE WORK WITH US TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE SITUATION OF DEAF IN MISSOURI?? We need to do it fast..."
So what is the matter with you people at Burrell and CoxHealth? You need sensitivity training in understanding Deaf culture. This reeks of audism, paternalism, and colonialism.
We need to contact these following people on the board of CoxHealth to ask them to terminate Todd Schaible and implement the programs to meet the needs of Deaf patients.
The board directors of CoxHealth are:
Loren Broaddus, MD
Charles H. Chalender
Pierre Clothiaux, MD
Judge John C. Crow
Patricia Dix, MD
Donald R. Duncan
Dona K. Elkins
Robert C. Glazier
C. Jeffery Gower, DDS
Larry D. Halverson, MD
Sam F. Hamra
James W. Hutcheson
Jerry G. Jared
Richard Kissell, MD
Larry W. Lipscomb
Donald G. Martin Sr.
Kenneth E. Meyer
Chris W. Nattinger
Michael T. Nietzel, PhD
Joseph M. Post
Robert E. Roundtree
Robert H. Spence
John P. Squires
John Wolfe, MD
Please be sensitive to the needs of Deaf patients. This looks like a legal remedy is needed to resolve the problems at Burrell Behavorial Health, an affiliate of CoxHealth.
Thank you for taking time to read this!
- a private citizen-
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
To whom it may concern at MH Commission:
*Note: This e-mail was sent to MH Commission at MHCommission@dmh.mo.gov - The board consists of the following, (Phillip McClendon, Ron DIttemore, Beth Viviano, Patricia Bolster, Kathy Carter, David Vlach, and Joann LeyKam)
I am expressing displeasure with the current events at Missouri Department of Mental Health. They have not followed the wishes of the Missouri Deaf community for past few years.
They have ignored our pleas to have Deaf mental health professionals to meet the needs of Deaf consumers. The programs are lacking and mismanaged.
I am asking that the Missouri Mental Health Commission intervene for the Deaf Community as we are asking MH Commission to step in and correct the wrongs.
We are not pleased with Keith Schafer's performance and handling of the Deaf programs. The funds are mismanaged. We understood that the $539,000.00 was or is designated for sign language interpreting programs. They ignored our request to amend the funding to allow DMH to hire four Deaf mental health professionals. We have asked DMH several times the past few years to follow the master plan that the Deaf community have provided the solutions to the problems of lacking mental health services for the deaf.
We are requesting a meeting with the MH Commissioners. This is a final step before initiating a legal remedy. DMH has been colonializing us for years. We would like to remedy the situation with your help.
Thank you for your time and attention to this matter.
St. Louis, Missouri
a private citizen
Novemer 2, 2008
Sunday, November 2, 2008
MISSOURI DEAF COMMUNITY SUFFERS FROM COLONIALISM...
With yesterday's MoAD's Presentation: In Search of Deafhood workshop, I have come to realize what was wrong with the Missouri Deaf Community. It is now clear and bright that we are suffering from colonialism. This is a new meaning and an eye-opening one! It is how and why some hearing people are behaving towards us. Those people are depriving us from a fully accessible language and socialization.
We can encounter them with our assertive plans and we can reverse their framings. There are plans to de-colonize Missouri. We are looking into implementing procedures to remove the negative effects of colonialism and audism in our lives.
We are allowed to share and discuss Deaf-related concerns and solutions with others (in person and on v/blogs).
We can prove that oralism benefits the professionals and how it harms the child and their families. It is a vicious cycle that needs to be broken. It can be done.
Many of us grew up oralist. We know and have seen how it hurts our families. My parents were divorced and my mother suffered mental health problems from having to deal with two deaf boys. She thought that God was punishing her. She even tried to kill me when I was three years old. She suffered from post partum that was unheard of in the early 1950's.
I still love her but I had to understand where she was coming from. She was a proud woman who had circles with ladies from country clubs and socials. She felt the world felling apart and in those days, disabled people were considered "no-no". Or was it perfectionism? It was colonization effect that affected my family. The doctor told her the bad news about me being deaf. She went into shock. She told me everything when I was in high school and we discussed a lot about what happened. I did inquire as to why i was "different". I had hard time trying to please hearing people and what did I get in return? You go figure! I am not alone in this issue. I know that you share the same problems I went through. It is colonialism hurting us.
In order to clarify what colonialism is - according to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, it defines as a control by one power over a dependent area or people. It is very obvious how the hearing people in Missouri are controlling us. Is it? Prove me wrong! Show me the Deaf community!!!!
This is how and why I enjoyed yesterday's workshop provided by Ella Mae Lents and Genie Gertz! I love them both and they did hit the nail right and they brought the house down with funny stories and of course there were unfortunate stories. We are to look into more activism based on their proposal to encourage us to do Deafhood activism. We are taught to be collective and vigilant in our towns. We are to examine and understand colonialism. We agreed that oralizm is recognized as child abuse. We are always appreciating our allies. We always want to form alliances and we do not need compromises anymore. We are to stand up for our rights as Deaf community.
We understand that David Eberwein could not make it. We appreciate his video message at the start of the workshop. We are glad that we had Deafhood workshop.
While we are searching Deafhood, we are learning to build a vision of a new world...
"*Where being Deaf is celebrated and never condemned.
*Where academic excellence in a natural Sign Language is critical and never compromised.
*Where Deaf-related concerns are "heard" and never ignored.
*Where false divisions among Deaf people are discarded and naturaly diversity is embraced.
We are now embracing Deafhood so that our future generations can dream big, think deep, sign freely, and walk proudly as Deaf people." from www.deafhood.us
We want simply our Deafhood back to pre-1880 existence levels. We were appreciated by many Hearing people in those days that "interpreters" were not needed. Get my drift? There were no such thing as interpreters in those days. A lot of hearing people were able to use sign language and share the world together. There was a prestigious society in Paris, France for many years in the early 19th century and people from world all over came to share ideas for prosperity and good life. It was shattered by audism and thievery from some hearing people.
Read books and history and you will know what we are talking about. It is time to de-colonize! I have scoured all over internet and great many books about deaf history dating back the three milleniums. The answers are in the history. We need to turn it around and stop them in their tracks!
A BIG THANKS TO PADDY LADD for initiating the steps to DEAFHOOD and we are learning to appreciate the BLUE RIBBON CEREMONY.
What about you? Can you show me your deaf community? Feel free to tell me about it! Have a good one!
St. Louis, Missouri
-a private citizen-
For more information about Deafhood, please visit the website at _ www.deafhood.us _
November 2, 2008
Thursday, October 23, 2008
What bothers me the most are those people at DMH sitting on their arses doing nothing! They are too busy making excuses and they are showing favorism to hearing people where the dollars go! They had the gall to spend $539,000.00 on interpreting services. It shows lack of common sense on their part. They are breaking the laws that protect disabilities everyday since Barry Critchfield left the office. The new administrator of deaf program need to get busy and stop window dressing! Enough is enough!
I have managed organizations and companies for many years. I know administrative decisions being made from top to the bottom rung of the ladder. I have hired and fired people. The business plan is the key to success of company and organization.
Steve Hamerdinger and Barry Critchfield had those business plans ready. They are SUCCESSFUL administrators! They have national and international reputation in mental health field. DMH insulted them!!!
It does NOT take a rocket scientist to figure out what options can be utilized in the wake of problems facing us.
Keith Schafer needs to go! John Heskett needs to go! Some people who pushed Barry Critchfield out need to go! They are only making things worse and wasting time!
I will stand on my feet and read the riot acts with those DMH administrators til my face is blue! I will continue pointing fingers at DMH administrators. I will remind them everyday they are responsible for the mess.
They cannot sweep those issues under their carpet! It is OUT in OPEN!
The cat is out of the bag! Actions speak louder than words!
Our testimonies at the recent conference is enough to blow them out of the water!
Like I said over a year ago, we need to initiate the lawsuit! Time has wasted and no one is taking lawsuit seriously! It needs to be done to put DMH on the right track!
Do we need a dead deaf person to act on it?
Shame on you! Those hearing people in Missouri who are practicing audism need Deaf Culture 101!
a private citizen
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
It is not politics. It is audism at work.
As for eugenics, it is like a wolf under the sheep's skin what they are doing these days.
Cochlear implant companies are so busy harvesting the world for profiteering purposes and lining the financial portfolios of the investors.
It does not take a rocket scientist to figure this out!
Again, it is part of eugenics.
The definition reads as:
"Main Entry: eu·gen·ics
Function: noun plural but singular or plural in construction
: a science that deals with the improvement (as by control of human mating) of hereditary qualities of a race or breed "
See how they control the society by human mating...which eventually will lead to what Hitler envisioned as well as AG Bell did.
So cochlear implanting and eugenics go hand in hand!
Monday, October 13, 2008
News Article from Springfield Newspaper
I responded to the article in their newspaper:
I do not think Burrell CEO and President Todd Schaible is being honest about his policy decisions. I have been told that he has audistic attitude towards deaf clients. He needs sensitivity training to understand deaf culture. His history with deaf clients and the deaf community are not pleasant.
As for 14Liberty - written notes are not helpful when there are complex terms and sensitivity in understanding what needs to be done. We simply need deaf professionals to counsel and assist deaf clients.
As for sitUBUsit, he/she is right - we are a minority in the hearing world and it is often at times hard to draw boundaries. This is how and why we need someone else to do the job.
Recently, we found out that DMH has been spending average of $539,000.00 on interpreting services alone. This is not a wise and sound decision.
DMH needs to re-prioritize the costs by hiring at least 4 deaf professionals at averaging $40,000.00 per professional. Then throw in at least $20,000.00 to cover benefits and travel expenses. The road to recovery will be better for deaf clients.
Deaf Advocates - please send your responses to that news story! It is time to take Dr. Todd Schaible to task for his comments. He said a lie about saying, " the information from the deaf community is simply not true." He is calling us liars and it is time to revolt!
We need to have a protest rally at his facility and show him how wrong he is and it is time for him to eat his crow!
Friday, October 3, 2008
With the recent hoopla about St. Joseph's crying about Jay's joke, Jay was talking about deaf kids not hearing what he said.
Jay Leno does NOT have to apologize. He is a comedian and we can laugh it off. He does not have to worry about what happened.
The bottom line is St. Joseph has been spewing lies since 1934. It was founded as a sign language school in 1837. This is pure AUDISM at work!
I am glad that Jay said something to bring this front and center for us to know the truth behind the lies of St. Joseph Institute for the Deaf.
They had a principal who had been abusing deaf children for more than 50 years.
Thursday, October 2, 2008
30 more days to Deafhood workshop - have you registered? Cut off is October 15th!
When: November 1, 2008 (Saturday) 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
2190 Creve Coeur Mill Road
Maryland Heights, Missouri 63043 (google for directions there)
Cost?: NO CHARGE! and lunch is included
Topic?: MoAD's Presentation: In Search of Deafhood
A Deafhood Vision for a World...
* Where being Deaf is celebrated and never condemned.
* Where academic excellence in a natural Sign Language is critical and never compromised.
* Where Deaf-related concerns are "heard" and never ignored.
* Where false divisions among Deaf people are discarded and natural diversity is embraced.
So our future generations can dream big, think deep, sign freely, and walk proudly as Deaf people.
This workshop will be conducted in American Sign Language by internationally known experts on Deafhood, Ella Mae Lentz and Genie Gertz.
Registration Deadline: October 15, 2008 - E-mail your request to Beth Williams, Registration Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org - The seats are going fast... so hurry and register NOW! Make registration easier by registering before October 15th. We will e-mail you e-tickets for admission and lunch. No long lines needed. We e-mail you e-tickets between October 19th and 25th. Please bear with us as we process information and handling of e-tickets to a large number of attendees. We are excited about the upcoming workshop!
This Deafhood workshop is made possible by the following organizations listed:
* MoAD - Missouri Association of the Deaf - www.moadshowme.org
*MCDHH - Missouri Commission of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing - www.mcdhh.mo.gov
*MOVRS/CSDVRS - Missouri Video Relay Service / Communication Services For the Deaf Video Relay Service - www.movrs.com
*GSLAD - Greater St. Louis Association of the Deaf - www.gslad.org
*Deaf Images - www.deafimages.tv
*Deaf Interlink - www.deafinterlink.com
*Sorenson Communications - www.sorenson.com
*RTR/DCC - St. Louis Metro Round Table Representatives on Deafness/ Deaf Community Center - www.rtr-stl.org
*GSLC - Greater St. Louis Chapter of MoAD - www.moadshowme.org
*If you are interested in helping us defray the expenses as we keep the workshop open to deaf and hard of hearing people without charge to help us understand Deafhood. It is part of Missouri Association of the Deaf's objectives to help the deaf community be aware and be informed. MoAD has been actively and doing this advocacy since 1904. Please e-mail to Paul Kiel, Chairman at email@example.com for consideration to help this project.
The Deafhood Committee of MoAD consists the following members:
Paul Kiel, Chairman
Beth Williams, Registration Coordinator
Mike Boyd, Logistics
Judy Benfield, Program Book
Nina Wilson, Hospitality
Ella Eakins, Finances
Missy Owoc, Committee member
Cathy Hall, Committee member
October 2, 2008
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
*** 2008 Public Service Announcement: ***
For widest possible distribution:
Release: October 1, 2008
Contact: Paul Kiel, SMDIFF Coordinator
Phone: Voice: 314-236-9048
VP: 314-664-8959 or pjkiel.myvp.tv
SHOW ME DEAF INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL 2009 - October 1, 2 and 3, 2009
St. Louis, Missouri, October 1, 2008 - SMDIFF has announced that we will have the second Show me Deaf International Film Festival scheduled October 1, 2 and 3 2009 to showcase independent American and International films. The festival will highlight the works of deaf and hard of hearing filmmakers. For updates, more information on festival, programming, tickets or travel, visit www.deafimages.tv
"I am pleased to say that we will have second film festival a year from today on October 1, 2009. It will be second time around and I did learn a lot from the first festival of its kind for deaf and hard of hearing. " noted Paul J. Kiel, SMDIFF Coordinator. "And we are pleased that the festival will again display the important works of deaf and hard of hearing filmmakers. I have received inquiries about displaying their films from India, Canada, Europe and Australia."
Also, Keith Wann will be performing on Saturday night, October 3, 2009. Come and watch his comedy show! He brought the house down last year and he is coming back for more on October 3, 2009.
If you would like to send your videos, please inquire for Film Submission Rules and Regulations forms. Please send your videos to have the festival committee review them and consider for the festival by August 15, 2009.. If you have any questions about submission or anything, feel free to e-mail to Paul at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We welcome sponsors to help underwrite the film festival.
Come one! Come all!
Let's enjoy the Show Me Deaf International Film Festival 2009!
Monday, September 22, 2008
Missouri Deaf Community is very disappointed and is questioning DMH's motive in hiring a sign language interpreter for the Director position at Department of Mental Health. Historically the deaf community does NOT trust an interpreter in any positions of any work. The Deaf community prefers that a non-interpreter be in a position. There is no confidence in the process of selection and hiring.
DMH is again abdicating its responsibility in meeting the needs of our deaf community. They went ahead and selected a sign language interpreter to fill in the post of Director of Deaf and Multi-Cultural Services.
It is them doing the window dressing all over again. They are still playing the shell game. They are trying to use plantation mentality in telling us to go to the Legislators who determine the budget. It is like saying, "There is candy in that store. Go there!... It is like they are trying to move the funds around and around to satisfy the hearing people's wishes rather than helping us. I have said months ago that it is time to initiate the lawsuit. We are not going to wait another day. We have suffered for the last few years without any proper mental health services for the deaf.
I do applaud the deaf leaders for making presentations last week at DMH, but the buck stops at DMH's desk. It is not the legislation nor outsiders of DMH. DMH has the money and they are still playing the shell game. We need the services now. Not two years from now! More Deaf are falling through the cracks now and the next two years. Where is our safety net?
We need to read between the lines over and over! It is simple that DMH is again bluffing us!
Those who are interested in serving mental health services for the deaf, please let me know. I will be happy to move the mountains and the buildings to see that a qualified person gets the job. We sincerely hope the interpreter can turn down the job as it is not qualified for that person.
I have checked the deaf media resources and I did not see any posting so I am including this posting. I warn you that the person I e-mailed a few months agao never answered my question about the degree requirements. She failed to answer my question so be it! E-mail me your resumes and I will forward to the right people on the grassroots committee.
E-mail to me at email@example.com
St. Louis, Missouri
Job Announcement from DMH:
Director of Deaf and Multi-Cultural Services
The Missouri Department of Mental Health has an immediate opening for an individual to provide leadership in the development of appropriate mental health services for individuals who are deaf/hard of hearing, or, who have other unique cultural/linguistic needs.
The successful incumbent will:
Provide leadership and oversight for the implementation of the strategic plan for deaf services within the Department of Mental Health;
Work with members of the deaf community to identify the available resources and unmet needs relative to mental health;
Work with leadership within the Department to develop an awareness of the unique needs of the deaf population;
Develop systems within the Department and its administrative agents to appropriately address the mental health needs of the population;
Work closely with the Missouri School for the Deaf to assess and address the mental health needs of children who are deaf or hard of hearing.
Assess the system capability in Missouri to address the mental health needs of the multi-cultural population of the state (Hispanic, Bosnian, Asian, etc.)
Work with leadership within those communities to develop a strategic plan to address the mental health needs of these populations.
This is a Merit System Position- Mental Health Manager B2. Applicants must be registered with the Missouri Merit System. The Merit System application and Assessment may be found at HYPERLINK "http://www.ease.mo.gov" www.ease.mo.gov
Salary Range: $44,340 - $73,704
For More Information or to Submit a Letter of Interest and Resume Contact:
Ms. Kelly McDonald of the Missouri Department of Mental Health
What: MoAD's Presentation: In Search of Deafhood
When: November 1, 2008
Time: 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Place: GSLAD Hall
2190 Creve Coeur Mill Road
Maryland Heights, Missouri 63043
(You can google information and directions to the GSLAD Hall)
Admission: NO CHARGE
Lunch: Lunch will be provided to the workshop participants: (sandwich, chips and a cookie) - Those who reserved by October 15th will get lunch. Those who reserved after October 15th may or may not get lunch.
Please register with Beth Williams at firstname.lastname@example.org
The deadline to accept registration is October 15, 2008.
Seating is limited!
There will be several free door prizes announced during the day and a major door prize after the workshop.
--Those who have registered for workshop will be getting printed tickets in e-mail during the week of October 19 and 25. This will help avoid long lines for registration. We are making registration simple for those who have made registration by October 15th.--
The workshop is made possible by the following sponsors -
* MoAD (Missouri Association of the Deaf)
* MCDHH (Missouri Commission of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing)
* GSLAD (Greater St. Louis Association of the Deaf)
* MOVRS/CSDVRS (Missouri Video Relay Services/Communication Service for the Deaf Video Relay Services)
* RTR/DCC (St. Lous Metro Round Table Represenatatives on Deafness, Inc / Deaf Community Center)
* GSLC (Greater St. Louis Chapter of MoAD)
If you would like to help sponsor or donate to cover the free admission, food and other expenses, please contact Paul Kiel, Chairman at email@example.com.
September 22, 2008
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
A DVD/video storyof a deaf man raised in hearing society until he discovered American Sign Language. For more information, e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hello, I am Paul Kiel, Chairman of Deafhood workshop for MoAD. MoAD is Missouri Association of the Deaf Inc. The workshop will be on November 1, 2008 in St. Louis, Missouri. It is titled,"MoAD's Presentation In Search of Deafhood" The presentors are Ella Mae Lentz and Genie Gertz. I want to thank the sponsors for helping us get this far. MoAD, GSLAD, Deaf Images and MCDHH. MoAD - Missouri Association of the Deaf Inc., GSLAD - Greater St. Louis Association of the Deaf, Inc. MCDHH is Missouri Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.
The cost of admission is FREE. No charge as the sponsors help cover the costs. The lunch is included. Please register with Beth Williams at email@example.com. The seating is limited. Register before October 15, 2008. There are hotels around the deaf club for out of towners. If you have any questions or concerns, e-mail to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
See you on November 1, 2008! =)
Saturday, August 23, 2008
I caught him signing to deaf man who told him congratulations in sign language.
It is nice to know that Obama replied in sign language to deaf man.
I want to vote for change!
This means Obama-Biden!
August 22, 2008
Post Dispatch Columnist
St. Louis Post Dispatch
To Bill McClellan:
I have read your column the past Sunday, August 17, 2008 when you wrote about "where mental health system fails, there's always jail." I find it interesting and there is another venue going on where the deaf community is suffering.
I would like to ask you to help the Missouri Deaf Community get long overdue services from the Missouri Department of Mental Health. They have been window dressing and playing the shell game with Missouri Deaf Community for many years.
We need them to stop playing games with the Deaf Community. We are ready and considering legal lawsuit against the Department of Mental Health. It is time to expose them for failing to provide mental health services for the deaf and hard of hearing. They have wasted millions of dollars and they have not listened to what the deaf committee proposed that DMH set up a 10 bed ward in at least 5 locations throughout the Missouri state. This is to be equal communication access and deaf friendly.
It is a long story about what had transpired the last ten years. Two program administrators had to leave DMH as the superiors at DMH continue to play the games. The buck keeps being passed around all these years.
The deaf community at large is suffering from lack of services that are sorely needed. Our proposal fell on their deaf ears. Pardon the pun! It worked in South Carolina and Alabama. This is how and why we would like DMH to accept our proposal to have the mental health services for the deaf and hard of hearing.
So, Mr. McClellan, will you help us expose their dirty laundry? We plan to take legal action so with your help, it will make our job easier in pursing legal avenue. We do not have the funds yet, but we will try. We are seeking a lawyer who can do pro bono to see that the DMH meet the needs of the Deaf and Hard of hearing right now. Not next year or in 2010 as they keep putting it off every year for many years.
Paul J. Kiel
St. Louis, Missouri
Friday, August 8, 2008
Thursday, August 7, 2008
DMH: The clock is ticking!
Given the whole dilemma going on at DMH, the recent breaking news story about deaf man from Springfield, Missouri is enough to shake the foundations of DMH.
There is lawsuit needing to be initiated and get the ball rolling. The first step as per legal scholars suggested is to go to Missouri Protection and Advocacy Services. (MO P & A).
Their website is at http://www.moadvocacy.org.
The wheels of justice is slowly moving into the right direction.
Who wants to help file lawsuits against Department of Mental Health? Time is now!
We cannot afford to wait for DMH to finish its window dressing and play chess games with us.
It is time to say "CHECKMATE"!
The game is over!
Too many Deaf and Hard of hearing have suffered without mental health services! My heart bleeds every minute that there is no mental health services for deaf and hard of hearing people in the community. I did not have good sleep for the past year knowing how many are suffering. I have met some who are suffering. Some are suicidal and some are hell-bent angry. Where are the services? Zilch! Nada! Nothing!
Why wait for DMH to address those issues when they knew very well what we wanted years ago when Steve Hamerdinger presented the plan for professional mental health services for the deaf and hard of hearing. If DMH had adopted and followed through what Steve Hamerdinger and the deaf committee had proposed. that deaf man from Springfield, Missouri would not suffer!
It does NOT take a rocket scientist to figure it out.
It is the management at the top of DMH who are playing with numbers and the politicians have told us that the ball is in DMH's court. They provided the money so it is DMH who is being targeted.
DMH should be in the Deaf Community's crosshair until they have satisfied everything that the Deaf committee proposed few years ago.
Shall we begin the process of lawsuit against DMH?
Paul J. Kiel
August 7, 2008
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
SEE YE! SEE YE! MISSOURI NEEDS YOUR INPUT! HELP SADE LOPEZ!
There is a growing controversy brewing in Missouri in all many towns! Many deaf and hard of hearing clients are falling through the cracks of the Department of Mental Health. This has been going on for years and years. Now the straw has broken the camel's back. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!
Please review the video done in Springfield, Missouri! ** view this video now!
Please e-mail your thanks to Angie Weidinger for exposing the story about lack of mental health services for the deaf in Springfield. It is only the tip of iceberg. A lot of people tried to kill that story. It shows the reins of AUDISM trying to stop her from exposing the truth. email your support to her now!
I am enclosing this vlog I made last Spring about Department of Mental Health and how it treated us.
Watch this video!
Here is attached my response to the television story
This is nothing new about how DMH treats deaf clients. This has been going on for too long time and it is time to get DMH accountable for the needs of deaf and hard of hearing clients.
This is getting old about the lack of services as we have been to Jefferson City numerous times in the last 30 years. It is someone at the top at DMH who is selfish. DMH can be sued real soon if they do not clean up their act. We have been waiting for the last ten years for real action.
No, it is bureaucratic nightmare and the lack of respect from them. They wasted millions of dollars on other things. They knew what we want and yet they blew us away!
They do not make any REAL efforts to get serious about providing mental health services for the deaf and hard of hearing in Missouri.
It is high time for legal action against DMH for many cases like that deaf guy in your news. That guy is NOT alone. There are many more throughout Missouri. It is just a tip of iceberg.
Why don't you investigate DMH? You can expose fraud, corruption and the likes in there.
Thank you for bringing that story to our attention! It is NO EXCUSE for what DMH did to deaf clients.
St. Louis, Missouri
Sunday, August 3, 2008
Abuses, brainwashing and corruption are audist tools used since 1880. This is as result of greedy hearing people who want to "rape" deaf people in all walks of life. It has happened everywhere from sea to shining sea.
For the last 40 years since I got interested in Deaf advocacy, I have seen many and many stories about how hearing people tend to abuse deaf people. I have visited many rural towns, small towns and cities. I have come across many stories because I was looking for truth.
Many oral programs have higher rate of abuses due to frustrations, demands of parents and ignorance.
The stories come from many Deaf people who grew up with anger, hatred and mistrust
Stories like Jack are very common.
Hearing people have been sweeping the stuff under the rug. They felt good knowing deaf people were stupid and too ignorant in speaking out.
What goes around will come around!
In the picture above, it is pure example of how audists abuse children everywhere in the ivy halls in most public oral programs as well as private oral programs.
Hearing people including parents tend to ignore our complaints or concerns about the abuses.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Friday, July 11, 2008
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT:
DEAF IMAGES UNVEILS NEW PLATFORM FOR 2008
LAURENT CLERC HIMSELF SHOW
ST. LOUIS, July 11, 2008 - DEAF IMAGES, a digital video production and multimedia company founded by Paul Kiel, today revealed its new platform for the next few years starting today. Deaf Images is presenting LAURENT CLERC HIMSELF SHOW using multimedia. The show will bring Laurent Clerc alive and educate the audience about his life experiences as a deaf man from France from the late 18th century to new life in the early 19th Century New World. He was known as "Apostle to the Deaf People of the New World."
Experience a live encounter with first Deaf teacher and advocate Laurent Clerc as actor Paul Kiel brings his one-man show to deaf community this Fall.
In this show, Kiel recreates Laurent Clerc of 19th century. Laurent Clerc was famous for promoting and using ASL (American Sign Language). He was a great teacher and leader. He was highly respected for his advocacy for Deaf community in the New World.
All in Clerc's signing and writings, Kiel explores Clerc's life in France, his experiences in the New World, his meetings with Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet, his trip on the ship to America, his exploration of Deaf community of the 19th century, his experiences with hearing people and advocacy for schools and programs for Deaf to grow and how he felt about his works nearing the end of his life.
"I am excited to start this program of educating the community about the life and times of our great deaf leader, Laurent Clerc." Paul Kiel, Deaf Images Founder and Owner, "I look forward to perform as Clerc to enable the public to understand the beginnings of American Sign Language and how it evolved to today."
Tickets and Reservations -
First show to debut - St. Louis - Date and place TBA
Other places will be announced on website soon.
This show is available for non-profit organizations, schools, churches, and clubs to raise funds in a very entertaining and enjoyable way.
Deaf Images is producing traveling stage shows for theaters, universities, churches, and schools.
To book a show, click here to: book show please
Thursday, July 10, 2008
NEWS FLASH! DEAF PARENTS DECIDED TO DEAFEN THE BABY!
The location and names were not available to protect the innocent. The Deaf parents decided to deafen their baby. They were unhappy as the baby was hearing. The family was 10th generation of Deaf families. There were 258 Deaf people in the clan.
The medical profession gave in after they won the lawsuit to make them deafen their baby.
The preparations were underway this morning for the baby to be deafened. They severed the nerves to enable the baby to become deaf.
More information to come!
Monday, June 30, 2008
With a great honor, I am picking this picture of Berlin Wall that is situated at Winston Churchill Memorial on Westminister Campus in Fulton, Missouri (Missouri School For the Deaf few miles east of campus). This picture is a stark reminder of how people oppressed people. It was terrible experience for everyone. I drove by the campus and took that picture about a year ago. We got them to take the Berlin Wall down. This is what we need to do the same for AGB. We share air, water, food, life, blood, tears, sweats, and many things on Earth. We deserve the right to have equal communication access.
Edward Nugent's picture," DBC Block AGB's Tanks". He hit the nail right on the head! He is right! Perfect and very right to the heart of the whole issue affecting us! It is like a wall. There was a play at NTID many years ago titled, 'THE WALL" during 1970's. It was about the same story we are experiencing today.
It is high time that the Deaf community works on the same page today to turn the tables on audism. It is working in our favor and we are winning in strides and leaps.
With recent DBC conference, it is time to raise our hands in the air and say it is time for "DEAF ADVOCACY NOW" We can sign in unity " DEAF ADVOCACY NOW!" It is time to tell the community truth.
With recent plaque and building changes, we are removing the cancer of audism.
We need to educate the community the benefits of ASL and how we succeed in working with hearing people in our lives. We are not handicapped like the hearing world thinks we are.
It is time to rub elbows with community leaders and neighbors to be more aware of our proud Deaf culture. We are proud to use ASL and we are allowed to sign anywhere we please. We do not conform to AGB's evil ways.
Eventually AGB's empire will fall apart when the truth shines from us in educating the community
It is time to get empowered and educate our neighbors through sign language programs and deaf studies programs.
We are the grassroots of the Deaf community and we can do it!
Let's raise our hands in the air and wave! We are asking AGBAD and his accomplices to stop lies and respect our proud Deaf Culture! We ask them to stop being terrorists like they did for the last 128 years!
So now the AGB Wall comes tumbling down!
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
June 25, 2008
A word from Chairman:
I am pleased and honored to serve on MoAD's Deafhood committee. I am pleased to have the committee members rolling up sleeves and getting busy for preparation of the upcoming event in November. We are honored that Ella Mae Lentz, David Eberwein and Gertie Gertz have agreed to come to St. Louis, Missouri. It will be an all day workshop from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at our proud facility called GSLAD Hall.
It will be fun day of learning about ourselves, our culture and our plans for future. This is what the workshop is all about. It helps us create a deafhood vision for a world tomorrow! The internationally known experts on Deafhood will be preparing us for a new future. Come and join us in this task.
I am pleased to announce the following people on MoAD's Deafhood committee.
* Paul Kiel, Chairman
* Beth Williams, Registration Coordinator
* Mike Boyd, Logistics
* Judy Benfield, Hospitality
* Missy Owoc, Committee member
* Nina Wilson, Committee member
* Ella Eakins, Committee member
More updates to come soon!
Please do register with us as soon as you can! The deadline is October 15, 2008 for registration. The seating is limited! Come one! Come all!
Paul J. Kiel
MoAD's Presentation:In Search of Deafhood
November 1, 2008
About MoAD - It is Missouri Association of the Deaf Inc. - For more information, www.moadshowme.org
About GSLAD - It is Greater St. Louis Association of the Deaf, Inc. - For more information, www.gslad.org
For widest possible distribution-
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
** VIDEO BOOK COMING OUT! SEPTEMBER 27, 2008** PLACE YOUR ORDER NOW! SPECIAL PRICE UNTIL SEPTEMBER 15th! Video Book $29.95 Special Price effective June 15 to September 15 $21.95! The video book will be released on September 27, 2008. Order now and save your spot on waiting list! Info? Contact Paul at email@example.com
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Welcome to Missouri! We want to show you something so you have to come to show us your motivation! We are inviting the community to come and participate in one day workshop in learning and understanding about DEAFHOOD! This is why we are having three presenters in St. Louis for the workshop. Missouri Association of the Deaf is pleased to announce the workshop for interested individuals in learning the journey of Deafhood.
It will be held at Greater St. Louis Association of the Deaf (GSLAD) building.
It will be on Saturday, November 1, 2008.
More information to follow!
Please let us know if you want to attend the one -day workshop!
We ask you to please register with us as soon as possible to reserve seating.
The seating is limited.
Lunch is provided.
Communication needs? Let us know!
MoAD's Presentation:Deafhood Workshop
November 1, 2008 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
****e-mail to me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thursday, May 29, 2008
I am back home with a heavy heart and a lot of questions as well as new information running in my head. I sat at my computer while pondering for truth in this matter. As usual, the truth is in the eye of the beholder. This is how and why I see what happens daily in our deaf lives.
As you can recall my previous posting about Barry Critchfield and his employment issues with Missouri Department of Mental Health. I do respect him and I think the truth is somewhat an issue in getting to the root of the problem at DMH. (link to my posting, http://deafadvocate.blogspot.com/2008/04/dept-mental-health-has-screwed-us.html dated April 12, 2008 )
I sat in my office chair poring over pages and pages of documents that have accumulated on my desk for the past month and almost a half. (six weeks) - I have read materials on lawsuits, mental health, deaf and any pertinent reports related to the issues that are on the "front burner".
I have been struggling with which "title" to use tonight so I say it two fold -
"IS DMH WALKING US AROUND THE BLOCK AGAIN?"
"SHALL WE GIVE DMH ANOTHER CHANCE?"
The first headline "IS DMH WALKING US AROUND THE BLOCK AGAIN?" is what I feel about the on-going issue. I remember back in 1978/1979 when RTR had a community meeting on mental health. There were no access to any services. The humble beginnings of what is going on today is what I have experienced the last 30 years to today. I have seen scores of leaders and advocates working hard to initiate the steps in making mental health programs accessable to the deaf community.
The group worked hard to develop a dream of having a comprehensive treatment program for deaf, deaf-blind and hard of hearing people who experience psychiatric disorders, mental retardation (DD) and substance abuse disorders. I am borrowing some words of "Revisiting the Dream". Yes, I can understand the dream. It is a challenge to bring them into reality. It is also difficult to apply theories and conceptualization into real practice. I am talking about " R E A L P R A C T I C E ".
It is an application from theory to practice. It is a repitition of bureaucratic, political, evasion, manipulation, oppression and misdiagnosis that continue to this day. Today is May 28, 2008. How much time has passed? Yes - 30 years.
The block where we have walked with DMH must have deep ruts by now. We are sinking lower and lower waiting for the reality to happen and new confidence in the system. At this stage, the Missouri Deaf Community does not have any more confidence in Missouri Department of Mental Heatlh.
I am keeping my mind open to options that are happening in front of us. We need to figure out what we can do at this stage. I have recommended a two pronged approach to the problem - continue with lawsuit and continue negotiating to get the program up and running.
So the next headline is "SHALL WE GIVE DMH ANOTHER CHANCE?"
Today, I had joined the meeting offered by Keith Schafer, Director of Missouri Department of Mental Health. He was cordial and professional in explaining his handling of the programs. He did homework on making a presentation.
He made welcome and introduction of people interested in looking for ways and means to resolve the problem that is dragging the deaf services program. The meeting with representatives of the Deaf community was cordial and very interesting. We did sound off on our concerns about the lack of few things prevening DMH from doing its real job. We did cover some areas such as funding and the meat (action from them to support the needs of deaf).
Keith Schafer is sort of late deafened and hard of hearing. He seems to take it in stride that he is losing his hearing. He has worked in the past with deaf program where he teamed with Sharaine (Rice) Roberts in implementing the Deaf Services program under DMH. You may recall that nice lady who worked hard to get the program set up and she had to leave the state for more challenges in her career.
Guess what? She showed up today for the meeting. She is acting as consultant for DMH. This may be good idea as she has the expertise. She wanted me to "hear" both sides of coin.
Back to Keith Schafer, he expressed his desire to work with us in finding a next candidate for the position The title of new position is "Deaf and Cultural Services Coordinator". He wants us to help him find a right candidate for the position. So it is up to us to decide who may be qualified for the position. We will have to do some homework and some advocacy to make this happen. He plans to send out job announcements for the position. The target date may be end of July.
The next thing that Keith Schafer mentioned in today's meeting is that he wants to create a Statewide Advisory Board - and his target date is end of June to have selected people to be on the advisory board. Their duties will be to work in finding solutions and share communications among DMH staff from the top down (chain of command). This is my observation of the definition that should be considered in delegating the roles of board members.
Keith Schafer would like us to present "Revisiting the Dream" to MH Commission. (The Commissioners are appointed by the governor to oversee the Department of Mental Health.) The target date is August.
He also recommends that we have deaf community advocacy meeting with governor candidates sometime in October and November.
He stated that we need to make presentation to House Health and Mental Health Appropriations Subcommittee in January 2009.
We are advised to keep deaf community advocacy ongoing. He did mention that the Deaf community "disappeared" after 2004 efforts to get funding restored and hire Barry Critchfield. I think he is mistaken as the deaf community did try to get involved over and over. It is the system working against the Deaf community for a long time. I have attended DMH meetings the last 2 years and I try to take the time to drive to Jefferson City to be aware of what is going on. The Deaf Community Representatives have been meeting in Fulton and Jefferson City during 2007 and we were going to meet more this year but due to the upheaval, we are on "hold". We will meet soon.
There is a copy of powerpoint made by them "Mental Health Services for Individuals who are Deaf". You may call DMH office to request a copy emailed to you as an attachment or find a way to get it from them. It is your right as Missouri Taxpayer to be informed of what is happening. The responsibility is yours to keep informed of DMH's progress. They are obliged to answer any questions you may have about deaf services. We do need you to keep them on toes. Keep them focused on providing programs for deaf. We have to make "noises" both at DMH and the state legislature. It was nice to see Senator Joan Bray of Creve Coeur there. She was there the whole meeting. She has been advocating for more funding for deaf program. She was the one who helped restore the funding in 2004. She emphasized that the deaf community need to work with legislators of each ward in the community.
The more we do the more realization is that the legislators will do more for us so it is us that we have to roll up our sleeves and shake the state capitol at its foundations. We can add to three prong approach - continue lawsuit, work with DMH and educate the legislators. It seems reasonable approach but in reality, will it work this time around? I was told that the funding was not an issue.
From the discussions around the community, we are looking at the administration who handles the deaf program. We are questioning the legitimacy of the actions happened in the office. Was it office politics? Was it misunderstanding? Was it power grab? What is it? You can tell us what you think!
I would not object to what he is doing, but is his job as a bureaucrat prevening him from doing the real needs. This is my observation. What should we do? wait another six months and see what the results are from his proposal to have programs up and running? What about lawsuit? Should it wait? We look at South Carolina and its success in suing the state DMH. We look at Alabama and its success in suing the state DMH. I have reviewed information on internet with other states. They did the same thing.... SUE THEM! I have been told that it is a logical step in getting the Missouri Department of Mental Health be accountable to the Deaf community.
Ella Eakins, MoAD President (Missouri Association of the Deaf, Inc.) had informed Keith Schafer that MoAD would be available for information, advocacy and leadership. MoAD as a statewide organization can be an advocate for improving DMH. It all depends on DMH and its reception to our suggestions..
There are two videos available for anyone who wishes to watch sign language interpretation of this text and I have volunteers to read "WHAT THE DEAF COMMUNITY HAS SAID" in the report to DMH Commissioners last year. I will be happy to express my viewpoint of that report in that video.
There are some reading materials available to the links below. This is for more understanding of what we need and how we can work it out.
Suggested Reading materials:
(Mental Health Commission Meetings, May 2006 - about deaf community expressing wishes for improvements in DMH)
(Steve Hamerdinger's presentations on MH programs and Deaf while in Missouri and more)
(Helping Deaf People with Mental and Emotional Problems by Jamie Berke at about.com:Deafness)
(Meeting the Mental Health Needs of Persons Who are Deaf, May 2002 by A. Barry Critchfield)
(Revisting the Dream: May 30, 2006 (Barry Critchfield/Steve Hamerdinger)
Friday, May 23, 2008
** Paul's note:
For a long time, I have been getting information from deaf communities from sea to shining sea. It is the same story all over again. Police abusing deaf has now jumped 100%! This is as result of a recent story from Rochester, NY.
This is a result of AG Bell and his regime encouraging audism and abuses in the community. It is time to buck the trend and turn things around and stop them in the tracks! 128 years of abuses have to STOP now!
There are more stories around the country that needs to be told about police abusing deaf people!
I did have vlog about this story on December 19, 2007. I have gotten many inquiries and some do not believe me. ok! I give you this opportunity to read this story from Rochester. You decide what you think should be done.
Of course, sensitivity training and learning ASL are both steps in the right direction.
But the Rochester, NY police chief said it was 'NOT REQUIRED".
This is wrong as every cop in every jurisdication should know and be aware of the needs of the deaf and hard of hearing!
We need to draw the line in the sand to stop them from abusing us!
December 19, 2007:
**sent to me by friends from Rochester, NY****
Deaf: Police Lax in Communication
by Mike Hedeen
photo by Matt Mann
Published May 21, 2008
Rochester is considered one of the most deaf-friendly cities in the country. Those who are hard of hearing say you would never know it by the actions of the police department. They feel officers are lacking in communication skills when it comes to dealing with the deaf.
Chief David Moore says sign language is not a requirement for police officers, but the training is there if requested.
"That is something that they can pursue,” Moore said. “We do have members of our staff who are extremely knowledgeable in sign language and also we have interpreters who are on call."
Many of the problems between police and the deaf community occur during routine traffic stops. Sometimes that communication barrier can turn a driving violation into something more.
That's what Jesus Colon experienced last summer. The NTID student was stopped for running a stop sign. In an attempt to explain that he was deaf, Colon says police didn't let him use a pen and paper or call for an interpreter.
"Through my window he grabs my hands, twists them, grabs my neck, throws me against the back of my chair,” Colon explained. “I have no communication at this moment. My wrist is twisted, I'm thrown around, I can't sign anymore, I can't communicate anymore, I've been physically attacked. I cannot express my thoughts, he's got my neck against the door and it was a terrible, terrible moment."
In most cases, the charges end up being dropped because of the communication breakdown. Others with similar experiences say the police are neglecting the deaf community.
“I felt that there was disrespect, that they didn't care about my needs and that they were going to very quickly provide citations without even providing clear communications,” said Barbara Kane of Rochester. “So being left out in this fish bowl is just inappropriate."
And they believe with Rochester's large deaf population, it's up to the police improve communication.
"I hope that today the police will develop an orientation every other month for them to develop a better understanding of the priorities for the deaf community,” Carmen Sciandra of Rochester said. “Police should be prepared and aware of knowledge and learning."