ACB 2021 Virtual Convention
Building on the success of the ACB virtual 2020 Conference & Convention, ACB will be hosting its 60th annual convention virtually, from July 16 through July 23, 2021, providing the opportunity to feature an exciting series of speakers, networking events and learning opportunities with ACB members and conference participants. For more details, visit: https://acb.org/ACB-2021-Convention-PR. For instructions on how to register, visit: https://acb.org/register-for-2021-convention.
ACB Alexa Skill Update
ACB Media Network will launch a new Alexa skill called ACB Media on June 27th that will replace the previous ACB Alexa skills. To access the new skill from your Alexa-enabled device first enable the skill by saying: "Alexa, enable ACB Media". Then you can launch the skill by saying "Alexa, open ACB Media". Stay tuned as we continue to prepare for the launch of this year’s annual convention. Listen to the Convention Information stream on ACB 10. To learn more, visit: https://acb.org/alexa-skills-2021. For the full list of stream names please visit: https://www.acbmedia.org/home/streams.
New ADP URL
The Audio Description Project (ADP) has a new web address (URL): http://adp.acb.org. Don't worry, if you visit the old site it will redirect to the new one; but if you bookmarked it (or any subpage), or have published the web address anywhere, please change to the new address.
Employee Announcement: Administrative Assistant
We are pleased to announce the newest member of our team: Debbie Brown! On June 21st, Debbie will join us as Administrative Assistant. She will provide the Alexandria Office with administrative support, including fielding incoming calls and processing mail.
Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Convention Track
On last week’s edition of the ACB Advocacy Update, ACB’s advocacy team members, Clark and Swatha, highlighted the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion track of programming at the 2021 ACB Conference and Convention. They were joined by Peggy Garret, Chair of ACB’s Multicultural Affairs Committee, and Gabriel Lopez Kafati, President of Blind LGBTQ Pride International. To watch the presentation on YouTube, visit: https://youtu.be/nBNwjhKv6i4. To listen to the presentation via podcast, visit: https://tinyurl.com/vv434hv3. To join us and learn more about this year’s ACB Conference and Convention, please visit: www.acbconvention.org.
North Carolina Accessible Absentee Voting
On June 15, 2021, Judge Terrence W. Boyle of the federal District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina ordered the North Carolina Board of Elections to take immediate steps to ensure that blind voters will have equal access to the 2021 municipal elections and all subsequent elections. Prior to Judge Boyle’s ruling, the North Carolina Absentee Voting Program required voters to fill out a paper ballot and return the ballot by mail, providing no alternatives to accommodate individuals with vision disabilities who are unable to independently and privately read and mark a paper ballot. Read the press release at: https://acb.org/NC-accessible-voting-2021.
Let’s Get to Work
The ACB Employment Committee has launched a new podcast, Let’s Get to Work, showcasing success stories of people who are visually impaired and successfully employed. To learn more, visit: https://bit.ly/3xeXE4h.
ACB Convention Transportation Track
On the June 8th edition the ACB Advocacy Update, Clark and Swatha highlighted the interactive transportation programming on offer at this year’s virtual ACB Conference and Convention. Clark and Swatha were joined by leaders of ACB’s Transportation and Environmental Access Committees. In addition to the conference and convention programming, they discussed several transportation-related advocacy issues important to ACB and our members. To watch this presentation on YouTube, visit: https://youtu.be/2AakR2RpG-Y. To listen to this presentation via podcast, visit: https://tinyurl.com/enue7bhw.
ACB Encourages State Assembly to Pass H-6004
ACB strongly encourages passage of H-6004 by the Rhode Island State Assembly. For the first time in the State’s history, H-6004 will enable equal access for voters with disabilities to vote independently and privately from home. All other eligible absentee voters have the ability to vote at home. Yet voters who cannot see, hold, or mark a paper ballot, are currently forced to give up their right to vote independently and privately, or vote at a polling location. This is by definition, unequal access to the ballot for voters with disabilities. Learn more by visiting: https://acb.org/H-6004.
Aira Celebrates Pride Month
Aira celebrated Pride Month with a visit to some iconic New York City landmarks. Amanda Davis of the New York City LGBT Historical Sites Project shared these important venues and people in the LGBTQ community. Gabriel Lopez Kafati and Anthony Corona from ACB’s Blind LGBTQ Pride International affiliate also joined the discussion. Description of the venues was provided by one of Aira's professional visual interpreters. Learn more about the NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project at www.nyclgbtsites.org. Learn more about Blind LGBTQ Pride International at www.blindlgbtqpride.org. For more information about Aira's visual interpreting services, visit www.aira.io.