Saturday, June 26, 2010

Caption Action 2 Is One Year Old!

Caption Action 2 just turned a year old! But, we don't want to grow up!

Starting with just one member early in the morning of June 25, 2009, we have grown to over 14,000 deaf and blind people, family, and friends.

What a year it has been! In one year:

* Support for HR 3101 (also a year old now!) in the House of Representatives was tripled.
* Newspaper reporters took notice, and began to write articles (such as the recently published New York Times article)
* Many bloggers, both deaf and blind, posted blogs and vlogs about HR 3101, and later, S 3304.
* Jamie managed to visit the office of every one of the 435 Representatives in Congress. Jamie even met two Representatives in person, one of whom signed on.
* We have had two hearings, one for HR 3101, and one for S 3304. The previous version of the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act didn't even get a hearing!
* We got a Senate version of HR 3101. The previous version of the bill didn't even get a Senate version.

So we have come a long way, baby! But..and this is a huge but..

Time is running out.

Congress is sensitive to events of importance. The upcoming 20th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act on July 26 is such an event. Passing HR 3101 and S 3304 would make Congress "look good" at a time when the media is likely to be paying more attention to people with disabilities and their issues. Indeed, during the hearings, this upcoming anniversary was frequently mentioned, a sure sign that Congress is most willing to pass our bills prior to July 26.

Lots of other issues are clamoring for Congress' attention. On Capitol Hill, it is the squeaky wheel that gets the grease! So it is very, very, very important that the nation's deaf and hard of hearing, and blind and visually impaired, their families, and their friends, bombard Congress with calls and emails before July 26.

So, let's make that one final effort to show Congress that we want equal access!

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