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Disrupting Justice

The barriers faced by deaf and disabled individuals within our justice, legal and corrections professions are not widely discussed or well understood. ¬†Nevertheless, deaf and disabled people are particularly susceptible to unjust encounters within each of these professions. This article will focus on barriers facing deaf people, but should be read with an eye, mind, … Continued

HEARD Publishes Second Report on Abuse of Deaf Prisoners in Florida

HEARD Founder, Talila “TL” Lewis, sent the following e-mail to wardens in the Florida Department of Corrections and to attonreys in the U.S. Department of Justice on May 23, 2014: Good Evening, I am writing because my organization, Helping Educate to Advance the Rights of the Deaf (HEARD),¬†is still receiving reports of abuse of and … Continued

The Legacy of Dr. McCay Vernon

It is with great sadness that I share the news¬† of¬† the passing of a great man. Dr. McCay Vernon is remembered as an amazing thinker, author, mentor, leader, advocate, colleague; and as a kind and gentle spirit. Notwithstanding six decades of separation, our relationship was valuable beyond words, signs and measure. ¬†Having his support … Continued

HEARD Responds to FL DOC’s Proposed Rule that Bans Prisoners from

On August 12, 213, HEARD submitted a¬†comment opposing the Florida Department of Corrections‚Äô (‚ÄúFDOC‚ÄĚ) proposed Rule 33-602.208, that, if adopted, would ban prisoners and their advocates from maintaining an “internet presence on any website.” ¬†HEARD stated, in part: “Not only is this proposed rule unconstitutionally broad, it also sets a very dangerous precedent that encourages … Continued


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE¬† CONTACT:¬†Talila A. Lewis w (202) 455-9278 w¬† August 9, 2013, Washington, D.C.¬†‚ÄstEight months ago, Helping Educate to Advance the Rights of the Deaf (HEARD) launched its Deaf Prisoner Phone Justice Campaign.¬† Through this Campaign, HEARD lobbied the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to bring an end to exorbitant prisoner telephone rates that disproportionately … Continued

Deaf Prisoner Telecomm Injustice

This week, all eyes are on the Federal Communications Commission as it finally moves to issue an order to lower excessive prison telephone rates. ¬† I am confident that the Commissioners will ensure that justice will prevail. With the current rates, hearing prisoners‚Äô telephone calls can cost their family members as much as $17 for … Continued

9 Obscure Nights & 9 Obscure Days

Written by Anonymous Deaf Community Member It was night of unexpected incident. The July 30, 2013. I thought it was dreams. The dreams that we used to imagine like film. In the morning of July 31 I realized that it was surreal not a dream anymore. It was when the commissioner handed out a signed … Continued

Pat Reflects on Working on Felix Garcia’s Case for 15+ Years

I‚Äôve been asked in the past what it has been like to be close to Felix, a deaf man who started out being¬†a complete stranger; and¬†me with no knowledge on how to deal with the deaf. That part did not bother me. I just pursued his case like I would any other defendant. I saw … Continued