Monday, June 22, 2015

Advocating the Deaf elderly woman in Waverly, Virginia

Folks, I posted this on my Facebook wall few days ago and it has brought so much positive out of people in my community. Here is the post below.
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Last week (Monday, June 16), Mom told me that she was worried about her close friend who was hospitalized for some illness, and was moved to health & rehabilitation center to recuperate her health from some illness/injury. Not only that, the facility wants to evaluate her to see if she can go home on her own or has to move to the assisted living facility or a nursing home. Mom's friend grew up in the area between Waverly, Virginia and Surry, Virginia. That particular rural area is right across the James River from Jamestown, the first permanent English settlement in the New World.
Thankfully, Mom's friend, Mildred has a good memory - she was able to remember Mom's address and wrote several letters to Mom to tell her that she's stuck at a local health & rehabilitation center in Waverly. A facility that is about 730 feet away from her apartment across the field. See the picture below.

Mom said the letters by Mildred said that she had a hard time asking for VP to be installed in her bedroom. Mildred also complained that other hearing patients has their own iPads, laptops & cellphones. When Mildred asked the social worker to go to her apartment and get her videophone box and install it in her bedroom, they said no. 
I heard, saw and read enough to know what's going on. I told Mom to give me the name of the facility. I made a VP call to the facility. I got ahold of Mildred's social worker who cited the HIPAA laws not to discuss her case.
She was right, she can't discuss about Mildred unless I have Mildred's permission first. I told her that I understand the dilemma because I used to work in an agency similar to her when I lived in New York. 
I also told her that if she does not do something about this within 2 weeks, I'll file a compliant immediately with the Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division and file a lawsuit against her and her workplace. I mentioned that in the last two cases, I forced two entities to make settlements with me and my family. I told her that I can easily win this case if she does not get her VP to her bedroom at that facility.
Enough said, she was rattled and the VP interpreter said that her voice was shaky as she called the female supervisor to take over the call. I explained about Mildred's discriminatory incident.
The supervisor said that she has been encouraging Mildred to come to her office to use her laptop and set up the Skype account under her supervision. I told her that no, it is not acceptable: 
1) Because Mildred does not use her computer therefore she does not know what the internet or Skype is all about. She only knew how to do the videophone through nTouch box which was installed by Sorenson Installer in her apartment.
2) Because the hearing patients are able to use their laptops, cellphones and iPads anytime without any supervision, why must Mildred be under her supervision whenever she wants to call her friends? 
Her Supervisor's proposal is obviously unfair & it falls on discrimination under Section 504 Rehab of 1973 & Americans with Disabilities Act. I told her that I knew where Mildred's apartment and where she is staying for the time being. The apartment is right across the soybean field I told her to get her VP box and installed it in her bedroom within two weeks from the call on or I'll file a complaint and a lawsuit against her and the facility at once. 
The supervisor asked about whether if Mildred's VP box can break the firewall? Will people use her VP box to hack and break through their firewall system and steal the facility's records? I told her that the VP is not a computer, it is an equipment that focused only on broadcasting TV between Mildred and her friends. 
Then I told her about the video relay service which I asked that particular VP interpreter (from SorensonVRS) to explain and fill in to the supervisor on what the VRS & VP are all about. Not only that, the SorensonVRS interpreter provided her with the contacts to reach Sorenson Communications for further information on this matter. 
IN ending, I was tough on her and told her that I am not afraid to sue her and her facility for the violations on a Deaf patient who repeatedly begged her social worker to get VP from her home just 700 feet away. 
And I told her that I'm very impatient person and I expected her to get the VP for Mildred within two weeks or I will instigate this with my attorneys on behalf of Mildred. The supervisor asked me to give her some time to follow this up. She has two weeks or else. Yes, I gave her an ultimatum. 
Four days later on June 20, 2015 - After arriving home from shopping, swimming & dining, Mom quickly alerted me to see who was on the "Missed Calls" and "Messages", it reads: 
Mildred Nxxxxxx. 
When i saw the name, I smirked. 
You see, educate the public about Deaf-related rights with a friendly attitude does not work very well. Which is why I refused to educate the public with a smile on my face. Instead of educating them, I simply was tough, hostile and demanding - Do it or I sue you, your call. This way, the public will never forget about it because I intimidated them at all costs. 
And what happened last night is the proof on why I felt being rough towards hearing people is much more effective than educating ignorants with a smile on my face. 

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