WHAT IS ADC
The Alaska Deaf, Hard of Hearing, and Deaf-Blind Council (ADC) was recognized in February of 1998 by the Alaska State Legislature and Governor Tony Knowles.
The resolution recognized ADC as a statewide information clearinghouse and services referral center. The State encourages private citizens, state agencies, schools, social service providers, private foundations, and all other parties who deal with Deaf, Hard of Hearing and Deaf-Blind to support the ADC and to use its services.
The Council wants to improve the quality of life, visibility, cultural awareness, and information on and about Deaf, Hard of Hearing, and Deaf-Blind people throughout Alaska. ADC plans to create a centralized resource for providers of professional services, promote advocacy and support for significant issues, and seek new technologies to improve communication access in the state.
Communications Access in Alaska
Similiar to the more than 40 State Commissions for the Deaf, Hard of Hearing, and Deaf-Blind throughout the United States, the ADC has an ambitious agenda and the determination to make it work. Even with the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in the early ’90′s and the past hosting of the International Special Olympics, Alaska has remained far behind in communication accessibility efforts to comply with the ADA and in coordinating information and services. The ADC wants to change that.
Some Possible Projects, Issues, Needs
The ADC is working to prioritize needs and funding requests. The ADC’s slate of possible projects include:
Establishing an ADC office and staff Funding and networking for statewide services Consulting and advocacting, unifying resources and service providers Developing a centralized information and referral clearinghouse Advocacting for an interpreter bill Promoting Deaf Awareness week Compiling an Alaska State Directory of Services (accomplished) Establishing an Alaska Deaf Camp – Camp Aurora (accomplished) Relay Services (accomplished) Mental Health (drug and alcohol counseling/treatment) Encouraging epidemiology studies for more accurate statistics and identification of people who are Deaf, Hard of Hearing, and Deaf-Blind. Improving statewide deaf education