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Deaf Grassroots Movement at Idaho State House

Deaf News - Deaf community holds rally at the Idaho State House.

BOISE, ID -- Several members of the Deaf community gathered Wednesday afternoon in front of the Statehouse to raise awareness of the issues they say they're facing here in Idaho. It was one of 50 rallies hosted by the Deaf Grassroots Movement, taking place simultaneously in all 50 states.

The DGM aims to fight for the rights of the Deaf and future generations in the Deaf community in all 50 states. On Wednesday all 50 state capitols will have a rally for Deaf Rights, including Boise, Idaho.

"One of the biggest problems is their limiting or ability to communicate," said presenter David G. Wilder.

They want to educate others on what can be done to make their lives better.

"We got a lot of issues that we are faced with," said Alan Wilder of the Idaho Association of the Deaf. "The American with Disabilities Act that was set up a long time ago, but it's not quite sufficient enough, enough where as Deaf people are still fighting everyday to receive interpreters or get equal access to information."

Organizers say that quality education, jobs and healthcare just aren't available to many Deaf people in the state. Because, they say, they don't have access to qualified sign language interpreters.

"In smaller communities it's not very well set up, but you know in hospitals they usually have that, but if you go to doctor's office or counseling services, they don't have those services," said Alan Wilder.

And while these people are all too familiar with the challenges they face every day. They say no one else will talk about them without them.

Alan Wilder said the Idaho Association of the Deaf plans to push for stronger and clearer laws surrounding Deaf interpreters in Idaho in 2017. Copyright 2016 KTVB.


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