Research Paper: Deaf Culture and Communities

Pages: 8 (3960 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 7  ·  Topic: Communication  ·  Buy This Paper

Deaf Cultures and Communities

Many people are unaware of how deaf culture can be complex. There are a number of things that make deaf culture what it is. Deaf culture is a culture that is unique to the deaf or people who are hard of hearing. They produce plays, books, artwork, magazines and movies that are targeted at the deaf or hard of hearing audience. The deaf community also takes part in social and political activities that are exclusive to the deaf community. The Deaf culture comprises people who consider their own deafness as making them different as opposed to being a disability. There are new activities that are developed that contribute to the growth of the American deaf culture and the output of intellectual works increases. The term deaf is used to refer to the aspects of deaf culture that are going to be discussed including organizations, publications and social clubs (Siple 2).

Deaf organizations

National Association of the Deaf

The National Association of the Deaf or the NAD is the nation's premier civil rights organization of, by and for the deaf and individuals who are hard of hearing living in the United States of America. It is also a nonprofit organization that individual and organizational donors, who also include corporations and foundations, generosity supports. Deaf leaders, who believed in the right of the American deaf community to use sign language, congregate on issues that were important to them and also have its interest represented at the national level established and shaped the NAD in 1880. The core value of the association is American Sign Language and the association remains true to the above stated beliefs (National Association of the Deaf 159). The NAD advocacy scope is broad and covers a lifetime while impacting future generations in the areas of early intervention, education, health care, telecommunications, employment, youth leadership, technology and more, and as a result improving the lives of millions of the hard of hearing and deaf Americans. The National Association of the Deaf acts as a representative of the country in the international front at the World Federation of the Deaf which is an international human rights organization. Through individual and organizational membership, the NAD ensures that the collective interests of the American deaf and hard of hearing community are seen and represented at the federal level among America's opinion leaders and policy makers.

i. The Civil Rights organization of the Deaf

The rights of the deaf or individuals who are hard of hearing are protected under several pieces of legislation of which the Americans with Disabilities Act or ADA is most known. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is an expansion on the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 which addresses federal programs, post-secondary education and vocational rehabilitation services. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act or IDEA focuses on educational access and dovetails with the Rehabilitation Act. Under the ADA, the rights of the deaf and hard of hearing persons are covered under five major areas. These five areas include among them, telecommunications (Dubow 286). The phone company is required to provide a means of using the phone system with TTYs for both local and long distance calls. TTY/TDD refers to a group of telecommunication devices that ease the process of deaf and/or mute people over telephone lines. TTY refers to telephone typewriter, teletypewriter or text phone. TDD refers to Telecommunications Device for the Deaf. TTY may refer to manual devices like typewriters while TDD falling under the computer assisted or digital devices category. A caller dials 711 where they get in touch with a trained telephone relay representative at the Michigan Relay Centre. The representative reads what the TTY user types and types what the voice telephone user speaks. The Michigan Relay Centre is capable of handling a variety of services including Voice Carry Over, Hearing Carry Over, Spanish to Spanish, Speech to Speech among others (Bauman 73).

The other area is state and local government, courts, attorneys. The State and Local government includes a list of agencies and services in addition to government offices and courts. Some include social service agencies, jails, police/fire, school systems, public swimming pools, municipal golf courses, civic arenas, lottery bureaus and also zoos. The services and agencies should have interpreters or hearing assistive device that are accessible by the deaf and the hard of hearing. The law specifies that a deaf individual has the right to an interpreter when they are arrested and no statement made in the absence of an interpreter is admissible in court (Moore and Levitan 206).

The other area is public accommodations whereby auxiliary aids and services for communicating with the deaf or hard of hearing are required to be provided in stores, businesses, hotels, theatres, restaurants, retail stores, banks, museums, parks, libraries and private schools. Business hotels and public accommodations are required to provide TTYs and amplified phones when phones are available for the general public. Malls, hospital waiting rooms, stadiums, convention centers, airports or any building with more than four pay telephones should have at least one TTY ("Athletes ").

In medical treatment, government sponsored hospitals are required to provide equal services to Deaf and Hard of Hearing persons. Their doctors, nurses, and other hospital staff should also be able to communicate with the deaf and the hard of hearing. With regards to employment, the ADA stipulates that employers cannot discriminate the deaf or the hard of hearing in the job application process, hiring, firing, salary or pay promotion or other benefits. There should be accommodations for the ease of access to information and safety by the deaf or hard of hearing persons. They should be able to perform their primary functions of the job which is also their own responsibility.

California Association of the Deaf

This is an association operated of, by and for the Deaf community as it advocates and promotes the quality of life and the deaf people's social welfare through empowering the deaf to exercise their self-determination and independence that is necessary for them to lead lives that are productive in the wider community. This association also tries to ensure there are equal opportunities that are for social, educational and employment fulfillment. It also advocates for the rights of the deaf and hard of hearing as well as protecting their rights to functionally equivalent services that are also accessible. It also advocates for the recognition of American Sign Language as a formal language. The final core value for the association is the preservation and respect of the deaf culture and heritage ("About CAD").

California Deaf Communities

Deaf communities do not necessarily include people who are either clinically or legally neither deaf nor do they exclude those who have good hearing. According to Baker-Shenk and Padden, one is Deaf if they identify as a member of the Deaf community and other members of the said community accept them as a part of it. It may include children of deaf parents, sign language interpreters, those who attend deaf schools among others. Of all the counties in the California region is considered to be the most "deaf friendly" places that one can live (Siple 2). The Los Angeles deaf society partakes in social events that are sponsored by small independent groups or by large agencies. The Greater Los Angeles Agency on Deafness, GLAD, has a social events calendar for events that it sponsors. There are deaf chat coffee in Los Angeles that meets at the once a month on Fridays at a coffee bean and tea leaf on the west third street. Los Angeles also has captioned movies whereby deaf people are able choose from either rear window captioned films or open captioned films at a variety of locations ("Deaf Community - Los Angeles Deaf America West Coast").

There are various ethnic organizations to cater to deaf people from different racial heritages. There is the Southern California Asian Deaf Association which is a chapter of the National Asian Deaf Congress. The Hispanics have the California Latino Council of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing but its existence is currently unknown. There is a Los Angeles California Black Deaf Advocates that is a chapter of the National Black Deaf Advocates.

There is a Hearing Loss Network in Los Angeles which is in addition to GLAD. These provide social services to their members through the use of the organization's units. An example of such a unit is the Los Angeles Commission on Assaults against Women. Los Angeles is home to the Deaf West Theatre of the "Big River" fame as well as the L.A. Bridges Theatre Company of the Deaf. There are interpretation services that are offered by GLAD which is called Lifesigns as well as other interpreting agencies like the in Good Hands Interpreting, Western Interpreting Network which services all of southern California including Los Angeles. LiNKS is another agency which offers interpreting services in the Los Angeles region (Padden and Tom 42).

There are several churches in the greater Los Angeles that cater to… [END OF PREVIEW]

Four Different Ordering Options:

?
Which Option Should I Choose?

1.  Buy the full, 8-page paper:  $28.88

or

2.  Buy + remove from all search engines
(Google, Yahoo, Bing) for 30 days:  $38.88

or

3.  Access all 175,000+ papers:  $41.97/mo

(Already a member?  Click to download the paper!)

or

4.  Let us write a NEW paper for you!

Ask Us to Write a New Paper
Most popular!

Deaf Culture Research Paper


Deaf Community and Its Need for Hospice Service Term Paper


Deaf Marlee Matlin Research Proposal


Deaf Education Term Paper


Sign Language and Deaf Culture Research Paper


View 95 other related papers  >>

Cite This Research Paper:

APA Format

Deaf Culture and Communities.  (2010, May 10).  Retrieved July 21, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/deaf-culture-communities/8283

MLA Format

"Deaf Culture and Communities."  10 May 2010.  Web.  21 July 2019. <https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/deaf-culture-communities/8283>.

Chicago Format

"Deaf Culture and Communities."  Essaytown.com.  May 10, 2010.  Accessed July 21, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/deaf-culture-communities/8283.