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U .S Im I
H l0 E Welf "a re
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The ability to communicate easily
and rapidly is so essential to all of our
everyday activities that a hearing impair-
ment may overwhelm someone who is not
accustomed to this widespread disability.
Without correction, a hearing loss
is a severe handicap to employment and
self-support. In profound deafness, other
ways of communication must be developed.
There are several avenues for im-
provement. One is vocational rehabilita-
tion through the State-Federal programs
which help restore disabled people to a
productive and full life.
This booklet describes the operation
of the State programs of vocational reha-
bilitation and how to obtain counsel and
There is little need for deaf and
hard of hearing persons to be burdened by
the social and economic effects of their :i
handicap. Many persons with hearing loss :
have been helped to employment in recent
years through this public program. A
friendly talk with a capable and trained
counselor of your State rehabilitation
agency may open the door to a better fu- ':
MARY E. SWITZER i.
Vocational Rehabilitation .
the DEAF and the HARD
Through Vocational Rehabilitation
IF YOU ARE ABLE TO WORK, but you
feel that your hearing loss is a handicap
in getting a job more suited to your abil-
ities, your State vocational rehabilitation
agency can help you.
Many services designed to reduce
the effects of your hearing loss on your
employment are available. The kinds of
services you are offered will depend on
several things, including the type and ex-
tent of your hearing difficulty.
Your State rehabilitation agency
Your State rehabilitation agency is
listed in the back of this book.
Each of the State agencies is in
partnership with the Federal government,
through the Vocational Rehabilitation Ad-
ministration in the Department of Health,
Education, and Welfare. The State agen-
cies perform all rehabilitation services for
the disabled, with the Federal government
providing leadership, technical help, and
The State programs are designed to
rehabilitate to employment people with
mental or physical disabilities. The pro-
grams correct or reduce the handicapping
effects of disability, provide training, and
help the disabled person find the right job.
In general, most of the services are
free, though there may be certain excep-
tions, as will be noted later.
Applying for services
The most satisfactory way for you
to apply for rehabilitation services is to
visit your State vocational rehabilitation
office, or its nearest field office.
Any public health unit, welfare
agency, or hospital usually will be able to
provide the address of the nearest office of
your State vocational rehabilitation
agency; or you can obtain this information
by writing to your State office (listed in
back of pamphlet).
Also, there are voluntary nation-
wide groups that work with the deaf and
the hard of hearing. Several of them have
branches in towns and cities, and any of
them will be glad to assist you in getting
in touch with your State vocational reha-
Some of the organizations that can
help you are the American Hearing So-
city, National Association for the Deaf,
the National Fraternal Society of the
Deaf, American Speech and Hearing As-
sociation, the Alexander Graham Bell As-
sociation for the Deaf, the Conference of
Executives of American Schools for the
Deaf, and the Convention of American In-
structors of the Deaf. All of them coop-
erate with the public vocational rehabilita-
tion program, and encourage persons with
hearing problems to apply for the services
Meeting your agency
Once you have been in touch with
your State agency or its field office, and
have explained your situation to a reha-
bilitation counselor, he will arrange for
you to have a medical examination. Ar-
rangements also will be made for you to
be examined by an ear specialist. These
medical examinations are necessary to de-
termine the general state of your hearing
and your health, and to determine if you
have any other disability that requires at-
There is no charge for these exami-
On the basis of medical findings and
of your discussions with your counselor,
the State agency will determine whether
you are eligible for services.
The basis for eligibility
These principal points will be con-
sidered in determining your eligibility for
Your hearing loss must substantial-
ly interfere with your getting or holding
a job, or prevent you from getting work
that is more suited to your abilities.
Your State agency must find from
the doctors' reports, and from talking
with you, that there will be a reasonably
good chance for you to work productively,
after services are proVided.
You and your counselor
If you are accepted for services,
you and your counselor-who will be your
guide all through your course-will get
together soon afterwards to work out an
individual program for you. He will want
to know what your work preferences are,
what work experience you have had, and
anything about you that will help him offer
worthwhile counsel about the kind of work
for which you should prepare.
Your counselor will make every ef-
fort to see that you are prepared and
trained to be a competent worker in the
field that you and he believe will provide
the greatest opportunities for your future.
Your agency assumes the obligation
of giving full consideration to your pref-
erences and abilities for employment. Yet,
in arriving at a decision with you about
the future, it will offer training only for
a kind of work that appears to fit with
your interests and abilities.
Rehabilitation services for you
If you are accepted for services,
your rehabilitation program will be along
these lines, according to your needs:
Individual counseling and guidance.
Any medical, surgical, hospital or
other services that will lessen your hearing
difficulty, or correct any other handicap-
ping conditions that may be found through
your medical examination.
Any aid that is required to help
your communication with others, such as
a hearing device, training in speech read-
ing, speech correction, finger spelling, sign
language, written language or related sub-
Training for employment. The
training may be in public or private
schools, college or university, on-the-job,
by correspondence, or by tutor.
Provision of living expenses and
transportation during the training period,
if these are necessary.
Placement in a suitable job, or pro-
vision of tools, equipment, licenses and
stock for a small business, if it is agreed
that this would be the best course.
Follow-up, to make sure that both
you and your employer are satisfied.
Most services are free
In all cases, the first medical and
hearing examinations are free of cost to
the applicant. After acceptance, individual
counseling and guidance services are free,
as well as job placement and follow-up to
see that the placement is successful.
Training is generally provided i
without cost, and the other services are
free to the extent that you are unable to
pay for them. That is, if you require a
hearing aid, or additional medical or hos-
pital services, you may be asked to pay
part of the cost.
The rehabilitation program is not
charity, in any sense of the word. Rather,
it expresses the belief of all of our people
that any person who is handicapped by
disability has a right to public services
that will provide a more equal opportunity
Your opportunities through
After you are in training, your
agency will begin matching you and your
trained abilities with a suitable job.
Though training in itself will not
be a guarantee of a job, your agency has
several ways of helping you find suitable
employment. Everything in your course
will lead up to that point. Your agency
will not regard you as rehabilitated until
you are successfully employed.
Your counselor will try to have a
job ready for you by the time the course
is completed. He will try to do this in or
near your community. In addition to his
own sources he will have the aid of your
State employment service, whose local of-
fices have people assigned to finding jobs
for handicapped persons.
Many nationwide industrial, retail,
and service organizations cooperate with
State and local vocational rehabilitation
offices in placing handicapped persons. The
President's Committee on Employment of
the Handicapped makes continuous efforts
to keep the Nation's employers aware of
the abilities of the handicapped.
The U.S. Civil Service Commission
has a special section devoted to increasing
job opportunities for handicapped persons
in the Federal government.
The results of rehabilitation
The value of rehabilitation services
to the individual is a highly personal mat-
ter. Aside from the opportunity for in-
creased income, there are the pleasures of
doing something useful, making new
friends, and leading a full life.
There are, however, impressive re-
sults of rehabilitation that can be meas-
ured in dollars and in the added strength
that they give to the labor force.
Deaf persons comprise about two
percent and the hard of hearing four per-
cent of the total number of disabled people
who are rehabilitated into employment.
Of the deaf persons rehabilitated in
a typical year, 60 percent were unemploy-
ed at the time their services began. An
additional 35 percent had annual earnings
In the first year after their rehabil-
itation, 90 percent of the rehabilitated
deaf people were earning a combined total
of almost $4 million. This was three and
one-half times the total annual earnings of
those employed when their services start-
ed. About 10 percent either were unpaid
family workers or farmers whose earnings
were not reported.
Jobs vary widely
The various kinds of work which
the deaf are entering indicate the widen-
ing scope of employment opportunities.
Compared with earlier years, for example,
more go into professional and semi-profes-
sional fields and clerical and sales jobs-
fewer into such occupations as agriculture
and forestry. More go into skilled and
semi-skilled labor-fewer into unskilled
labor, homemaking, and other unpaid fam-
Similar facts for the hard of hear-
ing give further proof of the value of re-
habilitation services. Of the hard of hear-
ing persons prepared for and placed in
employment in one year, 58 percent were
unemployed when their services were
started. Eleven percent had never worked.
Nine percent were family or farm work-
The 33 percent who were employed
at the time their services were started
were receiving wages at an annual rate of
$2,032,500. After their rehabilitation, 86
percent of the total group were receiving
earnings at an estimated rate of $6,317,100
annually, or more than three times the
previous grand total. The remaining 14
percent were farmers or family workers.
M medical Eaminatio I
New and expanded services
The 1965 amendments to the Voca-
tional Rehabilitation Act meet obvious
needs for programs and activities not pre-
viously provided. At the same time a num-
ber of the amendments expand and im-
prove the existing programs. A major
provision is for a two-year period of
grants to states for conducting comprehen-
sive studies of vocational rehabilitation
services. The grants enable states to con-
duct an orderly review of the entire gov-
ernmental and voluntary agency program
in vocational rehabilitation in order to
plan for the provision of services to all of
the disabled by 1975. States will work
with all appropriate agencies and citizen
groups in this study.
The organizations concerned with
the deaf and the hard of hearing should
be encouraged to assist the State planning
agency in assessing and planning to fully
meet the rehabilitation needs of the deaf.
With emphasis on working with
both private facilities and other public
agencies, each State vocational rehabilita-
tion agency may pursue five-year pro-
grams to assist in meeting the cost of con-
struction of necessary facilities and for
workshop improvement. Another provision
allows for the innovation of services for
the deaf by supporting the development of
new or expanded activities.
Separate legislation also provides
Federal matching funds for non-public
monies earmarked for a particular facility
serving the disabled, including those which
service the deaf and the hard of hearing.
The States may now provide voca-
tional rehabilitation services during an
evaluation period up to 18 months for the
deaf or the hard of hearing person who is
so severely handicapped as to require this
length of time in order to determine
whether he can enter or continue gainful
If the counselor determines the
need, the deaf client may obtain inter-
preting service through his State rehabili-
tation office. This service will help him
during the rehabilitation process in such
matters as medical examinations, diagnos-
tic tests, training, counseling and guid-
ance, and job placement.
The many occupations open to the
hard of hearing clearly show the oppor-
tunities for successful employment. Forty-
three of those rehabilitated in the same
year obtained managerial or office posi-
tions. Sixty-three became teachers, 140
became salesmen, 10 became draftsmen,
and six became accountants. Four hundred
and thirty-three went into clerical work,
320 into various skilled trades,' 49 into
printing trades, 84 into mechanical trades,
155 worked on farms, and 338 were home-
These are only a few of the occupa-
tions which the deaf and the hard of hear-
ing have entered successfully. If you have
a hearing difficulty which interferes with
your employment and the realization of
other hopes, it could be to your advantage
to discuss the problem with your State re-
NAMES AND ADDRESSES OF STATE
416 State Office Bldg., Montgomery,
36104 (18 local offices).
P. O. Box 2568, Juneau, 99801 (4 local
7 North 15th Ave., Phoenix, 85007 (4
211 Broadway, Room 227, Little Rock,
72201 (20 local offices).
1500 Fifth St., Sacramento, 95814 (29
705 State Services Bldg., Denver, 80203
(8 local offices).
33 Garden St., Hartford, 06105 (11 local
1500 Shallcross Ave., Wilmington, 19899
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA:
1331 H St., N.W., Washington, 20005
725 South Bronough, Room 254, Talla-
hassee, 32304 (12 local offices).
129 State Office Bldg., Atlanta, 30334
(25 local offices).
Department of Education, Agana 96910
Queen Liliuokalani Bldg., Room 217,
210 Eastman Bldg., Boise, 83702 (2
623 East Adams St., Springfield, 62706
(28 local offices).
1028 Illinois Bldg., 17 West Market St.,
Indianapolis, 46204 (13 local offices).
415 Bankers Trust Bldg., Des Moines,
50309 (15 local offices).
State Office Bldg., Room 1116. Topeka,
66612 (9 local offices).
State Office Bldg., High St., Frankfort,
40601 (11 local offices).
2655 Plank Rd., Baton Rouge, 70805 (16
32 Winthrop St., Augusta, 04330 (6
2100 Guilford Ave., Baltimore, 21218
(12 local offices).
296 Boylston St., Boston, 02116 (7 local
Department of Education, P. O. Box
1016 Lansing, 48904 (10 local offices).
Centennial Bldg., 4th Floor, St. Paul,
55101 (14 local offices).
316 Woolfolk State Office Bldg., Jack-
son, 39205 (15 local offices).
1448 West Dunklin, Jefferson City,
65101 (8 local offices).
508 Power Block, Helena, 59601 (4 local
Lincoln Bldg., Room 707, 1001 "0" St.,
Lincoln, 68508 (6 local offices).
515 East Musser St., Carson City, 89701
(2 local offices).
State House Annex, Concord, 03301
Labor and Industry Bldg., 12th Floor,
Trenton, 08625 (12 local offices).
P. O. Box 2406, Santa Fe, 87501 (5 local
162 Washington Ave., Albany, 12210
(13 local offices).
Department of Public Instruction, Ra-
leigh, 27602 (11 local offices).
418 East Rosser, Bismarck 58501 (5
240 South Parsons Ave., Room 207, Co-
lumbus, 43215 (15 local offices).
307 Will Rogers Memorial Office Bldg.,
Oklahoma City, 73105 (13 local offices).
507 Public Service Bldg., Salem, 97310
(5 local offices).
Labor and Industry Bldg., 7th and
Forster Sts., Harrisburg, 17120 (12
417 Ponce de Leon Ave., Stop 31, P. 0.
Box 1118, Hato Rey, 00919 (12 local
40 Fountain St., Providence, 02903
400 Wade Hampton State Office Bldg.,
Columbia, 29201 (19 local offices).
804 North Euclid, Pierre, 57501 (6 local
1717 West End Bldg., Room 615, Nash-
ville, 37203 (10 local offices).
Texas Education Agency Bldg., Austin,
78711 (25 local offices).
36 West Second South, Salt Lake City,
84101 (3 local offices).
State Office Bldg., Montpelier, 05602 (4
4615 West Broad St., Richmond, 23230
(15 local offices).
Department of Education, St. Thomas,
P. O. Box 528, Olympia, 98501 (13 local
State Capitol Bldg., West Wing,
Charleston, 25305 (18 local offices).
1 West Wilson St., Room 830, Madison,
53702 (9 local offices).
123 Capitol Bldg., Cheyenne, 82001 (3
SU. S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE: 1966- 222-172
Vocational Rehabilitation Administration
Washington, D.C. 20201
DISCRIMINATION PROHIBITED-Title VI of the
Civil Rights Act of 1964 states: "No person in the
United States shall, on the ground of race, color or
national origin, be excluded from participation in, be
denied the benefits of, or be subject to discrimina-
tion under any program or activity receiving Federal
financial assistance." Therefore, any program or
activity supported by grants from the Vocational
Rehabilitation Administration, like every program or
activity receiving financial assistance from the De-
partment of Health, Education, and Welfare, must be
operated in compliance with this law.
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
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