Emergency Alert & Access Committee: Request for Community Feedback

Emergency Alert & Access Committee: Request for Community Feedback


Hello my name is Rosemary Edwards. I am a member of the Illinois Association of the Deaf (IAD). I was recently appointed as the Emergency Alert and Accessibility Adhoc Committee chair. My job is to do research and collect information if there have been laws passed for those who are deaf, hard of hearing and late deafened regarding emergency alerts. One example is accommodations for tornado sirens, we cannot hear the sirens. Sirens are not accessible to us like they are for hearing people. The committee’s goal is to improve services for the community for emergencies. Not just for tornados as there are many kinds of emergencies. I heard stories of tornados hitting, mostly in southern Illinois. They’re not only in Illinois, but all over the USA. I wonder if there are any emergency alert services for the deaf, hard of hearing and late deafened. I’ve heard some towns offer emergency alerts on phones, but not every town offers this. My town does not offer the emergency alerts. It would be nice to have more access for us. However, not just that, sometimes when there is a weather report that comes on TV, there are no captions. When there is advice on what to do in emergencies, no captions are provided. Some places provide interpreter during emergencies, this is nice! I would like to propose this as a statewide law to ensure equal access to information in the event of emergencies. Some states provide tool kits but not all. I would like to see other people outside of Illinois to work with us to identify processes that work the best. If your town offers services, I would like to learn more! Once we gather information, we can all work together to show legislators it’s not just Illinois who needs help. If your town offers services, does it work? Does it not work? Please let me know. Any information is great! I would love to work with all of you. It’s my passion to work on this! I worry about this often! I have hearing sons who let me know what is happening. When my hearing sons move out, what will I do? I hope If you all help me out, I will help you! If this is successful, I will be more than happy to share information and partner up with you. Have a good day!

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