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Governor Brownback does it again!

June 6, 2015

Shame on Gov. Sam Brownback

The Kansas State Government—Gov. Sam Brownback—was given five figures to create accessibility kiosks at the capitol building in Topeka. What we got was kiosks manned by people who will walk you through how to use the computers to get information. There are no sign interpreters for the deaf, who can actually read directions rather well. But, worse, there is absolutely no accessibility for the blind. There is no Braille. There is no voice screen reader program. Gov. Brownback’s task force for accessibility in the capitol building only recognizes physical handicaps as accessibility needy disabilities. Narrow minded and wasteful. Yet Gov. Brownback and the State of Kansas laud this effort as a great leap froward in making government (and sanitized history) accessible, fulfilling some kind of mandate. Though no one in the blind community sees it this way.

The local and State chapters of the NFB (Nat’l Federation of the Blind) will be going to the capitol and making a hands-on assessment and submitting their reports to the State and the NFB. Lord help Brownback and Kansas when the NFB gets involved! There will be considerable embarrassing and, perhaps, shaming PR.

This kind of half-assed accessibility that counts out some handicaps is in violation of the ADA, which sanctioned use of the money. Some of this money might better have been spent in educating Brownback and his State employees in what the ADA is and what accessibility entails—most certainly not in hiring new State employees whose job it is to walk the physically handicapped through how to use the kiosk computers, as if the physically handicapped are mentally handicapped. It is obviously the State employees who are mentally deficient—and by extension Gov. Brownback as he signed off on the program and gave his approval upon completion.


From → Non-fiction, Politics

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