The availability of CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation) and other assistive listening devices at meetings, and at community and cultural events.
HEARING LOOP INSTALLATION
The installation of hearing loops for effective, wireless access to sound (via telecoils in hearing devices) in theaters, houses of worship, senior and community centers, retail stores, auditoriums, lecture halls, and government meetings.
HEARING HEALTHCARE POLICY
Advocating for more favorable public policy and laws at the federal, state, and local levels in recognition that hearing loss affects people of all ages and impacts all aspects of their lives.
NYC ADVOCACY SUCCESS
A HISTORIC MOMENT: Above, Mayor de Blasio was joined at the bill-signing ceremony at City Hall by, from left: Council Member Helen Rosenthal, HLAA-NYC Chapter President Katherine Bouton, MOPD Deputy Commissioner Kleo King, Chapter member and accessibility advocate Jerry Bergman, MOPD Deputy Commissioner Robert Piccolo, former City Council student intern Edward Friedman, and Council Member Elizabeth Crowley.
On March 21, 2017, Mayor Bill de Blasio signed a bill believed to make New York the nation's first major municipality to require hearing loops in places of public assembly.
The new law applies to construction and renovation projects funded by the City at a cost of $950,000 or more. Council Member Helen Rosenthal of Manhattan, lead sponsor of the bill, estimates that, under the City's current capital plans, loops will be installed in close to 300 new projects throughout the five boroughs.
"Hearing loop technology makes such a radical difference in the ability of so many to participate fully in public life," said Council Member Rosenthal. "I'm proud that as a city we have moved to make it not just a priority but a requirement in our public investments."
HLAA-NYC Chapter President Katherine Bouton added, "We look forward to the day when all who wear hearing devices can walk into City meeting halls and hear, understand, and communicate with others."
The new law requires at least one assembly area and one adjacent security, information, or reception area to be looped. It also specifies that by July 2018 the Mayor's office must post on its website a list of such facilities owned or operated by the city. For details about the new law, click here.
In 2016, Mayor Bill de Blasio signed into law two bills sponsored by City Council members Helen Rosenthal and Richie Torres and prompted by HLAA-NYC Chapter advocacy. HLAA Chapter President and National Board member Katherine Bouton and Chapter members Ruth Bernstein and Jerry Bergman participated in the ceremony.
Bill 1: For Improved Access to Services
Each city agency is now required to designate an employee as its disability services facilitator.
The facilitator is responsible for coordinating services for people with disabilities according to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements. Agencies are also required to post the names of the facilitators on their websites.
Bill 2: For Accessibility at Meetings and Events
Posters, invitations, and other publicity materials for city-sponsored events open to the public now must contain information on the types of accessibility at each event and deadlines regarding when requests for accommodations must be received.
Agencies must encourage their contractors to comply with this requirement. Community boards and district councils also are encouraged to comply. Where possible, publicity materials are to include information regarding wheelchair access, CART, sign language interpretation, assistive listening systems, and other accommodations.
We would like to encourage you to support the Hearing Loss Association of America and its New York City chapter by joining our team for the NYC Walk4Hearing at 9 a.m. on September 23rd in Riverside Park at 97th Street.
The Walk4Hearing rallies communities across the country to create awareness about hearing health. Walk day is a chance for you to meet others with hearing loss, their families and supporters, learn from each other, and have fun.
By joining the Walk New York! Team you are helping support the activities of the local chapter as well as those of the national organization. HLAA is at the forefront of advocacy with respect to public policy, public awareness, and program delivery related to hearing loss. The portion of contributions that goes to the NYC chapter is crucial for the continuation of its programs, which include captioned and looped monthly meetings which are both educational and fun. Advocacy by the local chapter has benefited thousands of New Yorkers with hearing loss by providing support for hearing-looped venues and captioned Broadway performances and movie screenings.
Take Charge of Your Hearing Health and Get Your Hearing Screened
The call to action of the 2018 Walk4Hearing is “Get Your Hearing Checked!”
Take charge of your own hearing health (or encourage someone else) by getting a hearing screening! Follow HLAA Walk4Hearing on Twitter @Walk4Hearing and tweet #screenURhearing to let us know that you got your hearing checked or encouraged someone else to do so. And, if you are motivated, take charge of your own hearing health or encourage someone you know to get their hearing screened.