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Friday, August 30, 2019

Blind Coloradoan August 30, Labor Day Edition

National Federation of the Blind of Colorado logo including Live the Life you Want
Up there on top is the NFB of Colorado Logo followed by “Live the life you want.”

Blind Coloradoan Blog August 30

Writer, aggregator Kevan Worley. Contributing editor Dan Burke.
Here is what you need to know

NFBCO celebrates our quest for labor justice in Colorado.

Abraham Lincoln once stated, "All that serves labor serves the nation. All that harms is treason. If a man tells you he trusts America, yet fears labor, he is a fool. There is no America without labor, and to fleece the one is to rob the other”.

So, even in the time of Lincoln the contributions of the worker was being recognized.

In 1882, Labor Day was established. Although most Americans think of Labor Day weekend for the extra day off, family time, picnics, and camping we at the Blind Coloradoan think it is a time to stop and reflect on the blind and disabled worker. The landscape is changing for the worker with a disability. Only a few short years ago almost all people with disabilities working for non-profit, factories, and stores (factories often referred to as sheltered shops or sheltered workshops) were paid far less than the minimum wage. The ability for organizations like Goodwill, Lighthouses for the Blind, etc. to pay people with disabilities far less than the minimum wage was enshrined, ironically, in the most important, sweeping, labor law ever passed in this nation. The Wagner O'Day Act passed in 1938 assumed that blind people would not be able to perform equal work. Therefore, sheltered shops were given the right to pay significantly less than the minimum wage. Over the years, led by the National Federation of the Blind, we organized unions, picketed, and took on legislative initiatives to end the unhealthy, unfair, unjust discriminatory treatment of workers who are blind. As we gather with family over this Labor Day weekend, it seems fitting that we reflect on the blind labor leaders who have sacrificed for our movement over the years. Colorado used to have a broom shop. Blind people manufactured brooms and sold them door to door. Although some blind people benefited from the job opportunities created by this shop more than 60 years ago, their message was antiquated and discriminatory. The National Federation of the Blind of Colorado led the fight to close the shop down, and, the Federation won.

There are still people with disabilities in Colorado earning less than the minimum wage. We will continue our fight to end this practice. It is likely that in the next few months we will take our case to the Colorado General Assembly. It is long past time to end subminimum wages in Colorado.
This Labor Day weekend our wish is that you will enjoy family and friends, celebrate the contributions of NFBCO to the labor movement, and plan for our labors to come over the next few months. Happy Labor Day.

Note: we continue our work on national legislation that would end subminimum wage and bring greater opportunities for competitive employment, the Transformation to Competitive Employment Act, H.R. 873 in the House and S. 260 in the Senate.

On August 25, 2012 NFBCO and our allies picketed the Goodwill of Southern Colorado and Goodwill Denver. Our work brings change. In recent months, Goodwill Denver and Goodwill of Southern Colorado have merged. And, according to the United States Department of Labor this new entity no longer pays subminimum wages. Labor Day is a time of reflection and a time of celebration.

Bowling with Rails. A competitive sport and great fun for blind Coloradoans.

Monique Melton readies herself at bowling rail

After a day of labor, enjoy a good game of bowling with blind friends and colleagues at the Crown Lanes, Iliff and Federal, in Denver. The group meets weekly beginning Saturday morning September 7 at 11:30. There are 11 teams with 3 bowlers on each team. Monique says, “we are a little competitive, just a little. But it is all about the fun.” Contact Monique for information, email for all of the dets. Historically, bowling is a sport with long-standing appeal. Blind leagues are available in many cities across the nation.

Not Fantasy Football at all.  It is a survivor pool and it is much less work than Fantasy Football.

Colorado Association of Blind Students fundraiser football survivor pool is back! For details contact Lisa Bonderson or Cody Bair. Cost to enter is only $20.

iPhone training in Boulder.

Maryann Migliorelli provides the following timely announcement. Go Boulder! Double tap this.

Are you looking for new and better ways to use your iPhone?
Are you a new or longtime user looking for some basic tips and tricks?
If you are a blind or low vision iPhone user who says “Yes,” to these questions,
The National Federation of the Blind Boulder Valley Chapter has
the perfect FREE class for you.
September 7, from Noon to 2:00 pm
Boulder Public Library Main Branch
1001 Arapaho Avenue in the Boulder Creek Room
The first hour will be devoted to new users with one-on-one assistance from more experienced participants.
The second hour will focus on best practices, apps, and preferred accessories.
Have questions or need directions to the class?
Please contact Maryann Migliorelli at 720-284-2318

Big news about Goalball from CSDB.

Colorado School for the Deaf and Blind Bulldogs will broadcast the big game against the New Mexico School for the Blind Saturday morning, September 7. Hear the games on the CSDB YouTube channel. Let the games begin at 8:30 a.m. Join the festivities at the school or online.

We will serve no wine until it is time. The time to participate in this wonderful wine tasting-fundraising experience with the North Metro Chapter is the evening of September 28. Time is running short for your RSVP by September 21.

Reminder! The Wine Tasting Event is on Saturday, September 28 from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at Spero Winery located at 3316 W. 64th Avenue in Denver.  Tickets are only $50 which includes dinner, dessert, and plenty of wine tasting.  There will also be chances to win excellent door prizes.
For more information call Jon Deden 303-722-2529.  Please RSVP by September 21.

Reminder. Proposals for NFBCO State Convention workshops are due September 6.

For information contact Jessica Beecham. Share your passion, knowledge, expertise, and energy with the blind of Colorado.

Big congratulations to Colorado Center for the Blind Seniors Program, working on the Western Slope to empower blind and low vision seniors to live the lives they want.

The week of August 26, Director of CCB services Duncan Larson, along with Executive Director Julie Deden, and CCB Public Relations Manager Dan Burke presented training in the alternative techniques of blindness at the Center for Independence in Grand Junction. They also spent time with our Western Slope chapter leaders. Read more about our expanding programs for seniors in upcoming blogs.

Register now! Register now! It’s not too early to make your plans and register for the Fort Collins NFBCO State Convention.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Blind Coloradoan August 21

National Federation of the Blind Colorado logo including "Live the Life you Want"
Up there on top is the NFB of Colorado Logo followed by “Live the life you want.”

Blind Coloradoan Blog August 21

Writer, aggregator Kevan Worley. Contributing editor Dan Burke.
Here is what you need to know

Request for Proposals: The National Federation of the Blind of Colorado is seeking content for our 2019 State Convention seminars and breakout sessions.

Seminars and breakout sessions will be held on Friday November 1 and Saturday November 2 at our State Convention in Ft. Collins. The National Federation of the Blind is made up of blind people of all ages, races, ethnicities, and backgrounds. This year we are seeking new and dynamic content that will appeal to our diverse audience. If there is something fun, exciting, interesting, intriguing, evocative, educational, or stimulating that you would like to share with the blind of Colorado, their families, or professionals in the field of blindness,  please fill out the information below and email it to Jessica Beecham by September 6. We will review all proposals and will let you know by September 23 whether your proposal/seminar has been chosen as a part of this year’s Convention festivities.

If you have attended a convention of the National Federation of the Blind in the past, you know that often we have a large number of breakout sessions simultaneously. This year our aim is quality over quantity so please give us as much detail as possible about your session and how it will enhance the Convention. Please note, we will be choosing the presentations that best fit the agenda and not all proposals will be selected.



Is this presentation or seminar affiliated with a division or chapter of the National Federation of the Blind of Colorado?:

Objective of presentation or seminar:

Description of presentation or seminar (note, someone from the review committee may reach out to you for more details):

Best Method of contact:

How much time would you like for your session (1, 1.5, and 2 hour blocks available.):

Founded in 1955, The National Federation of the Blind of Colorado is the oldest and largest organization of Colorado citizens who are blind or visually impaired. The National Federation of the Blind knows that blindness is not the characteristic that defines you or your future. Every day we raise the expectations of blind people, because low expectations create obstacles between blind people and our dreams. You can live the life you want; blindness is not what holds you back.

Aira is free. Today, and every day.

From the aggregator: Many have probably heard of or even had a demonstration of the Aira descriptive services for blind and low vision people. For a time, I served as a consultant. This allowed me to test early versions of the product. I use Aira along with Be My Eyes, Seeing AI, and other technologies that provide me information which can more easily be obtained visually. Aira has been a paid service but now they are offering short calls free. Probably worth checking out. Here is what Aira said in an email to us.

We’re so excited to get this out into the world that we decided to do it a little earlier than originally planned. This means you may find the odd piece of communication or web page that may not be entirely up to date. Rest assured that the team is bringing everything in line as fast as they can.

The important thing to remember is that you can now make short calls for free, every day.
More specifically, Aira is free to use for those short, everyday tasks where a little information can save you a lot of time.
This applies to everyone. If you don’t pay for a plan, you get free short calls every day. If you pay for a plan, you also get free short calls every day, with the added benefit that you can make those monthly plan minutes stretch further.
We’re all working toward the same goal – we want to make inaccessibility a thing of the past. In an increasingly digital world, we’re here to level the playing field through equal access to information. To help make that real, connect with an agent today, and every day. And tell everyone you know about Aira!
Together, we will continue to pursue equal access for all.
Kevan Worley using the Aira Horizon glasses to announce the NFBCO 6 Dot Dash 2018. Shirt says, "Aira. I'm an Aira Explorer, #do more."
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What’s the catch?
A: There isn’t one! So long as the call is relatively quick (5 minutes), it’s free! Just make sure you have the latest version of the app on your phone. As this is an early version of the service, we ask for some patience if you come across any hiccups along the way, or if we end up making some minor tweaks further down the line. We’re so excited to get this out into the world that we just couldn’t wait any longer!
Q: Who can use Aira for free?
A: Anyone who has an Aira account (regardless if they’re on a plan or not) and resides in a country where Aira provides full service. These countries include USA, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
Q: I don’t pay for a plan, can I use Aira for free?
A: You sure can! You can now make short calls to Aira agents for free, every day. You’re no longer limited to using Aira in just Access Locations or with Access Offers (although those are still great to use if you want to do something that takes more than 5 minutes).
Q: I pay for a plan, can I use Aira for free?
A: Yes! The first 5 minutes of every call is free, so now you can use your plan minutes for doing anything that may take more agent time.

Q: Want to learn more?
A: The best way to learn is to do! First, make sure you have the latest version of the Aira app on your phone. Then connect with an agent, you can ask all your questions and it won’t cost you a thing.

Aira Tech Corp is a technology company dedicated to making lives simpler, easier, and more fun. Based in San Diego, California, we use the latest technologies to connect blind and low-vision people with real, highly trained professionals who provide visual information on demand.

Letter of appreciation from long-time Federation servant-leader Alice George brings smile.

Last week, the Blind Coloradoan received the following email from Alice George. No matter where Alice has lived in Colorado, she always has a kind uplifting word. She has served in numerous capacities, bringing her steadfast leadership to the Colorado Center for the Blind and our Federation Affiliate. In recent years, Alice has been a bit quieter. But as you will note from the following, she continues to do the work of the movement.

Hi Kevan,

I want you to know that you and Dan do a really beautiful job of publishing the Blind Coloradoan.  I look forward to receiving it and love the wealth of info you share.  As always, I like to keep up on the latest NFBCO news.
Thanks so much for all your dedicated time, energy, and efforts to keep us informed and to promote NFBCO.

I like the new format of the Blind Coloradoan.  It's very concise, organized, and accessible.  Someday, I may have Something to contribute, but for now, I'm working with Broomfield seniors and helping them out.

Again, thanks so much for what you're doing ... and keep up the great job!
You're doing a wonderful service to all we blind residents in Colorado.


Blind entrepreneurs gather for training and tradeshow September 25-27 at Atlantic City mini BLAST!

From the aggregator: Since 2002, National Association of Blind Merchants has been holding national conferences to provide networking, tradeshow of products and services, and continuing education. This year, the organization is holding a smaller version of BLAST but the agenda looks stellar. Terry Smith handles work in the area of advocacy and policy for NABM. Here is what Terry has to say about mini BLAST Atlantic City.

Excitement is building for the National Association of Blind Merchants’ Jersey Mini BLAST which is just 5 weeks away.  An outstanding agenda is being planned.  You will be educated and motivated.  Come meet the newest RSA staff members and learn what is going on with our federal partner.  Get the latest on accessible micromarket kiosks.  In fact, Three Square Markets will have its accessible kiosk there for you to see and 365 Markets will be there with exciting news about their accessibility efforts.  You’ve been asking for accessible kiosks and we have been working hard with these two companies to deliver.  Brooke Lierman with Brown, Goldstein, and Levy will recap the most recent litigation involving Randolph-Sheppard.  Terry Smith will do his Randolph-Sheppard 101 workshop and you will learn everything you need to know about the law and implementing regulations.  We are especially excited to offer a breakout session exclusively for Elected Committee Members and blind entrepreneurs and another session for SLA staff.  Heidi Chico, Past President of NAMA and current President of the Wittern Group will deliver our luncheon keynote.  And then there’s the Vistar Food Show that will feature 175 booths.  Learn the latest trends and what’s selling.  Check out all of the new healthy products that your customers are demanding. Don’t miss out on this unexpected training opportunity.  

As noted, the training will be held in conjunction with Vistar’s large northeast food show and NABM is very excited to have been invited to partner with Vistar to sponsor this event. 

Register today on-line at . A room block has been set aside for $99 per night but availability is dwindling.  To book your room, you can go to  or call 1-888-.516-2215.  The Group Name is RSA and the Group Code is SHO9VVD.  The cutoff for rooms in August 26th so don’t delay.  

Are you flying into Philadelphia?  You will be about an hour from Atlantic City.  You can arrange a shuttle with Tropiano Transportation by calling 800-559-2040 at least 48 hours in advance of your arrival.  Uber is an option especially if there is more than one traveler.  The most affordable method is by train.  If you want to fly directly to Atlantic City, Spirit appears to be your only option.  

See you in Atlantic City!