Blindness Briefs – Edition 84

What's Inside

  • The future of design is accessibility.
  • DOJ proposes new rules to make US government web sites accessible.
  • AI detects causes of blindness.
  • Audio description people's choice awards.
  • More to the story of Helen Keller.
  • Blind man runs appliance repair shop.
  • EEOC issues new guidelines for blind in workplace.
  • An action packed sports section that's especially good this week.
  • And, more than 60 stories about blindness and blind people from all over the world.

Editorial By Chris Hofstader

If you're a regular reader of World Blind Herald, you may have noticed that we've not been publishing featured stories on a weekly basis but are continuing to publish Blindness Briefs every Tuesday and Science Briefs every Wednesday. It's summer, we're a very small team and we're looking to change how we handle featured articles. If you're interested, go to the author guidelines and suggest a story you would like to write for WBH and we'll see if it fits into our editorial framework.

These are interesting times for disabled people. People on the right wing of politics are starting to refer to accessibility initiatives as "woke" and are rejecting our civil rights out-of-hand. This is strange as historically disability related legislation starting with the Rehabilitation Act during the Nixon administration up to and including CVAA in 2010, all major legislation involving disabled people, our rights and accessibility for us have passed the US Senate overwhelmingly and have never been controversial. Today, we have two excellent bits of legislation introduced in congress, one by Senator Duckworth and one by Senator Markey and neither is getting any support from the republican party. At the same time, I'm not hearing the so called leadership in blindness doing anything to mobilize our community to gather support for these two important new amendments to ADA and CVAA. NFB does have the Duckworth amendments on their legislative agenda but I haven't seen a call for its members to call their congressional representatives and senators to get that one passed. And, for no reason I can fathom, NFB does not support Senator Markey's amendments to CVAA saying that the legislation is either "not important" or "a distraction." If you are a blind person like me and you enjoy descriptive video (DVS) on television and at movie theaters, you have the original CVAA, also introduced by Senator Markey back in 2010, to thank for it. Every NFB member I know enjoys DVS and, when I ask why NFB doesn't support the legislation that brought it to us, they usually answer with a shrug and an "I don't know." I suppose NFB isn't too interested in explaining its legislative agenda to its members.

ACB seems to support both new laws but, again, I'm hearing no call to action from their members. If you haven't already, watch the movie "CripCamp" and see what disabled people can do when we do get mobilized. Oddly, if you do watch "CripCamp," you will likely note that neither NFB nor ACB are mentioned, a few blind people are included in the film but the leadership did not come from those who claim to be the voices of America's blind. I plan on writing a long and pretty complex article describing the history and asking the question, "Where is the leadership in the blindness community?"

I hope you enjoy this edition of Blindness Briefs, it has a wide variety of stories and, the sports section is especially good this week.

How It's Organized

WBH Weekly Blind News Digest is a very simple page to read. The categories are at heading level 2 and the stories are links at heading level 3. So, navigation to the sections and stories you find interesting is quite simple.


10 Brilliant Facts About Braille

Invented by Louis Braille, the braille system has helped blind people. This story comes to us from: Mental Floss.


The Future of Design Is Designing for Disability

The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 set out some accessibility mandates, but the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) introduced a new era. This story comes to us from: The Nation.

Android phone launched for blind or visually impaired

The SmartVision 3 offers a large tactile keypad, voice commands and TalkBack for navigation and control. This story comes to us from: Gadget.

Assistive Tech at the End of Sight

The Country of the Blind advances techniques and technologies for the visually impaired. This story comes to us from: IEEE Spectrum.

Blind Charlotte NC woman says Biden administration proposal will improve online access

Rosebud Turner said the proposed change to increase online accessibility is needed. This story comes to us from: Spectrum News.

DOJ proposes rules to make government websites ADA-accessible

The rules are aimed at guiding government entities on being compliant with the regulations in the Americans with Disabilities Act. This story comes to us from: Top Class Actions.

Buro Happold's new RNIB HQ first to adopt neurodiversity standard

The new London headquarters of the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) is the first building in the UK to achieve the a new BSI standard. This story comes to us from: Construction Management Magazine.

AI Detects Diseases That Cause Blindness

However, with timely diagnosis and treatment, blindness can be prevented. This story comes to us from: Nation World News.

Blindness Organizations

The American Council of the Blind's 2023 Audio Description People's Choice Award

The American Council of the Blind (ACB) announces that the 2023 Audio Description People's Choice Award finalist vote is open. This story comes to us from: PR Newswire.

Spitfire flies over St Dunstan's to mark closure of centre

The Blind Veterans UK centre, known as St Dunstan's, in Ovingdean is … shutting after 80 years of service to blind ex-servicemen and women. This story comes to us from: The Argus.

Update on National Programme for Control of Blindness and Visual Impairment

Update on National Programme for Control of Blindness and Visual Impairment. This story comes to us from: Press Information Bureau.

Prevent Blindness declares August as children's eye health and safety month

The month will be dedicated to educating families on the importance of healthy vision and early access to healthcare. This story comes to us from: Ophthalmology Times.


Mike Kirby: More to the story of Helen Keller

In 1913 she began lecturing (with the aid of an interpreter), primarily on behalf of the American Foundation for the Blind. This story comes to us from: The Sun Chronicles.

Tampa woman who lost vision teaches visually impaired wood turning

A woman who lost her sight did not let that stop her from succeeding at learning and teaching others a new skill. Andi Sullivan knows the importance of having your senses. "When your sight impaired, your world becomes a little smaller," she shared. This story comes to us from: FOX 13 Tampa Bay.


Visually impaired employees still facing hiring wall

As the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) turns 33, and the Rehabilitation Act (RA) turns 50, advocates for the blind and visually impaired want to make sure they aren’t left behind. The National Institute for the Blind (NIB), along with representatives from the non-profit and private sector, spoke to Congress in July to raise awareness about unemployment rates for the blind — a number that refuses to budge even as job markets return to normal after the Great Resignation. This story comes to us from: HRD America.

Darkness to Mastery: Blind Tamil Nadu man repairs fridge, washing machine, mixies by touching

Sureshkumar, a 32-year-old blind man, runs a service center for electrical appliances in Coimbatore. Despite losing his vision at a young age. This story comes to us from: The Economic Times.


Waymo is bringing its robotaxi service to Austin

… conducted its first driverless ride on public roads with a legally blind man named Steve Mahan riding solo in the prototype Firefly vehicle. This story comes to us from: Yahoo Finance.

Blind Woman Receives Rude Response Asking Station Employee for Help, Police Officer Intervenes

A law enforcement officer proved that a bit of kindness goes a long way after helping out a blind woman at a commuter station. This story comes to us from: AmoMama.

Tech is breaking accessibility barriers in transport — here's how

One of Europe's few blind software engineers explains. … I didn't understand computers for blind people.This story comes to us from: TheNextWeb.


Date set for inquest into death of teen at Ontario school for blind children

Date set for inquest into death of teen at Ontario school for blind. This story comes to us from: CHCH.

‘Blue’ guardian angels: police officer duo ‘shadow’ blind girl for 400 days to protect her on walk through subway

“Seeing these warm moments of officers guarding the blind girl, I couldn't help crying,” one person said. This story comes to us from: South China Morning Post.

Warning over viral boiled egg challenge that could leave you BLIND

Abbie Sloan showed a woman cutting into a microwaved egg, which exploded in her hand in a cloud of steam. This story comes to us from: The US Sun.

Urgent HSE warning over major pregnancy risk that could cause blindness

HEALTH bosses have issued a warning to pregnant women who suffer with diabetes. This story comes to us from: The Irish Sun.


Blind man's "desperation" in three-year wait for council home in Liss

A BLIND man has spoken of his desperation with the housing system in East Hampshire amid a three-year wait to secure a home for him and his guide dog. This story comes to us from: Farnham Herald.

Visually impaired and journey to fulfillment… how society can help

Rather than resigning to fate, some visually impaired Nigerians are resolute on engaging in productive ventures but lack adequate support from society. In this report, ISAAC TAIWO and PAUL ADUNWOKE highlight some of their challenges and how stakeholders can help them to lead fulfilled lives. This story comes to us from: The Guardian Nigeria.

This Kenya Woman Has 11 Visually Impaired Children; A Look At Her Tragic Life Story

Agnes is now raising them all alone. This story comes to us from: News18.


Blind man gunned down in Edgewood, lost sight in previous shooting

An Edgewood man who survived a shooting a decade ago, but lost his eyesight after being wounded in the head, has died in a separate shooting. This story comes to us from: WMAR.

Guide Dogs

Blind man’s bid to ride pillion on as many motorbikes as possible in one day to raise funds for guide dogs

An East Yorkshire man left blind after complications following surgery is on a fundraising mission with his latest challenge. This story comes to us from: Hull Live.

Banham Zoo apologises for turning guide dog away

A zoo has apologised for not allowing a blind man to take his guide dog into its attraction. This story comes to us from: BBC.

SERVICE CIRCUIT: Leader Dogs for the Blind benefits from group's fundraising

One of “her” dogs, Bennie, is with a blind man in Wyoming. This story comes to us from: Macomb Daily.


More legal action looms for Sunshine Coast University Hospital after delays to accessibility

The family of a blind man is considering further legal action against a Queensland hospital that has failed to rectify design flaws. This story comes to us from: ABC.

DB directive in PIL filed by NFB

In a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by National Federation of Blind (NFB) Jammu Branch, a Division Bench of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh High Court comprising Chief Justice N Kotiswar Singh and Justice Wasim Sadiq Nargal has issued directions for filing the criteria to assess the “low vision” candidates who have been selected and given appointment under Section 34. This story comes to us from: Kashmir Latest News – Daily Excelsior.

EEOC Issues New Guidance on Visual Disabilities in the Workplace

It also uses the phrase “vision impairments” to refer to various vision-related conditions, including blindness and low vision. This story comes to us from: JD Supra.


Blindness Is a Strange Country

’m going blind as I write this. It feels less dramatic than it sounds. The words aren’t disappearing as I type. I’m sitting comfortably in the sunroom. The sun is rising like it’s supposed to. I can plainly see Lily sitting next to me, reading in her striped pajamas. The visible world is disappearing, but it’s not in a hurry. It feels at once catastrophic and commonplace—like reading an article about civilization’s imminent collapse from the climate crisis, then setting the article down and going for a pleasant bike ride through a mild spring morning. There’s no cure for retinitis pigmentosa (RP), the condition I was diagnosed with more than 20 years ago, so I usually see my eye specialist every other year. During my last visit, she showed me an illustration of how much vision I had left. This story comes to us from: Nautilus Magazine.

It's the Thought That Counts': Blind Husband's Act of Kindness Causes Literal NSFW Drama for Wife

As the woman explains in her TikTok video, despite her partner’s kindness, her conference call became an incredibly tense affair as she had to make sure she was holding her coffee mug “really weird” to obscure the message written across it. “Now, in no way did he do this on purpose, he’s completely blind, so he didn’t know he handed me a floral cup saying ‘Eat a bag of d*cks. This story comes to us from: We Got This Covered.

Video of Indian woman feeding blind Malay lady in Kedah hospital warms hearts on TikTok

A kind gesture by an Indian woman in Kedah has warmed the hearts of many Malaysians on TikTok. This story comes to us from: Malay Mail.

Blind and visually impaired kids find community at Camp Spark

Gongora's friend, Jacob Scott, agrees. “It's just like any other sports camp, but with blind kids,” said Scott. This story comes to us from: Statesman Journal.

Art and Artists

Meet Milo, Bristol's blind TikTok sensation about to take the Edinburgh Fringe Festival by storm

Milo Mooney will take centre stage at this August's Fringe in Scotland's capital, in a one-hander dark comedy about a man who is slowly going blind. This story comes to us from: Bristol Live.

Blind deejay 'DJ Hey' finds her groove with Trance music

A blind deejay in La Mesa isn't letting vision impairment stop her from rocking the club. This story comes to us from: CBS 8.

An interview with writer Selina Mills on living with sight loss

It was also hard to deal with the way other people expected me to behave as a blind woman. This story comes to us from: Harper's BAZAAR.

The Blind Man Who Did Not Want To See Titanic | Exclusive Trailer

Premiering at Venice International Film Festival, an intense movie, shot from a blind man's perspective. This story comes to us from: YouTube.

Sports and Athletes

Baseball for the Blind: The World Series of Beep-Ball comes to Norman

If you hadn’t already been to a Beep Baseball game you might not think it possible for players, all blindfolded, to hit, run, and field. This story comes to us from:

President's blog: Classification! IBSA's “Achilles Heel”

Yesterday I met with IBSA’s classification leadership team. It will be no surprise that classification – its processes, its administration and the quality of our classifiers – is one of our most fundamental subjects requiring review and reform…..and investment. The integrity of every aspect of this area is IBSA’s ‘Achilles heel’ This story comes to us from: International Blind Sports Federation.

IBSA World Games: Odisha's Phula Saren named as vice-captain of Indian Blind Women cricket team

Cricket Association for the Blind in India (CABI) announced the captains for the Indian Blind Cricket teams. This story comes to us from: Argus News.

Aakash Chopra cheers for Indian Blind Cricket Teams ahead of World Games 2023 in Birmingham

Meanwhile, the women's team will step onto the field to take on Australia in their debut match of the tournament. This story comes to us from: Daijiworld.

'We are struggling with funding' – Captain of Indian blind cricket team highlights group's ordeals even after T20 WC victory

The event will witness a range of sports competitions, including Archery, Chess, Cricket, Blind Football, Partially Sighted Football, Women's Football… This story comes o us from: CricTracker.

Kerala blind star gets World Games call

Adding to the sheen is yet another Malayali who has been picked to India's first-ever women's team for visually impaired cricketers. This story comes to us from: The New Indian Express.

Kenya: Salvation Army school for the blind set for the special school games

Editor's Note: This story is in audio. This story comes to us from: YouTube.

Tennis gives blind people new hope in Colombia

Learning to play the sport at 45 for Gabriel who is blind has not been easy. This story comes to us from: Anadolu Agency.

Dundalk blind tennis champ to represent Ireland at World Championship

Group B1 is completely blind people and they play in the service box of the tennis court and have up to three bounces with our sound ball. This story comes to us from: Dundalk Democrat.

Blind NJ golfer Tyler Cashman making his mark on adaptive scene

NJ's Tyler Cashman making his mark as legally blind golfer. This story comes to us from:

California Blind and Disabled Golf Classic set for Oct. 13-15

Olde School Golf School will host the 2023 Howard Shaw Memorial California Blind and Disabled Golf Classic Oct. 13-15 at Zaca Creek Golf Course. This story comes to us from: Lompoc Record.

How a man started rock climbing after losing his sight — and what it taught him

Justin Salas has been legally blind for 16 years. He took up rock climbing after he lost his vision. This story comes to us from: NPR.

TheMoment a blind man finished an epic swim for a good cause

… the proceeds going to Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind. This story comes to us from: YouTube.

74-year-old blind woman runs 5K

Keryl Rustin is a 74-year-old blind woman who found freedom in running. This story comes to us from: NewsNation.

Soccer Fan Takes His Blind Friend to the Stadium and Describes the Whole Match to Him

A video captured a man describing the soccer match to his blind friend. This story comes to us from: My Modern Met.

Blind Climber Returns to Remote Patagonia

After avoiding Patagonia for 20 years, blind adventurer, Erik Weihenmayer, is invited to explore El Valle de Silencio. This story comes to us from: Gripped Magazine.

In Memoriam

Mary Callaghan Obituary – Huff & Lakjer Funeral Home, Inc. – Lansdale – 2023

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Betty's name to the National Federation of the Blind, 200 East Wells Street at Jernigan Place, Baltimore, MD 21230. This story comes to us from:

Vanessa Walsh Obituary – Carolina Cremation Service – Salisbury – 2023

She was also a member of NFB, National Federation of the Blind. This story comes to us from:


Blind Guy Touches Fiancée's Food 'To Check' If She Ordered The Same Dish He Did

Woman asks if she was being a jerk for taking her fiancé’s dinner after he touched hers. This story comes to us from: Bored Panda.