United States Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) introduced the Technology, Education, and Accessibility in College and Higher Education (“TEACH”) Act February 27, 2014. This bipartisan legislation would help strengthen the accessibility of educational technologies for college students with disabilities. Senator Warren announced her introduction of the legislation at a Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) hearing on “Promoting College Access and Success For Students With Disabilities.”
Almost 10 years after consumer groups filed a petition with the FCC requesting standards for caption quality, the FCC has acted. On February 20, at their Open Meeting the FCC voted unanimously to upgrade TV closed captioning quality.
HLAA is invited to contribute to a panel discussing the future of IP-based Relay Services, by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The FCC is developing and funding interagency research on IP-based technologies. The workshop was convened to gather information on the kinds of research that is needed to improve TRS. The FCC is partnering with the National Institute on Aging for this grant.
HLAA filed comments with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regarding their draft guidance entitled:
"Regulatory Requirements for Hearing Aid Devices and Personal Sound Amplification Products.''
This draft guidance is intended to clarify the distinction between hearing aids and personal sound amplification products (PSAPs), as well as the regulatory controls that apply to each. This draft guidance is not final nor is it in effect at this time.
HLAA filed comments January 24, 2014, with the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board (Access Board) regarding their Notice of Proposed Rulemaking covering passenger vessels.
HLAA Files a Friend of the Court Brief Supporting Equal Access to Captioned Telephones
HLAA provided the Chairman Bob Menendez, Ranking Member Bob Corker and members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee with our letter in support of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) in advance of the Senate hearing scheduled for November 5, at 2 pm.
HLAA received a letter from Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Julius Genachowski inviting us once again to serve as a voting member of the FCC’s Consumer Advisory Committee (CAC) until the charter ends in October 2014.
Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) signed onto a letter penned by Common Cause and signed by 46 allied organizations calling on President Obama to appoint to the Federal Communications Commission commissioners who will uphold consumer protection in telecommunications, promote a diverse and local media ecosystem, and foster universal connectivity to the open Internet.
Two commissioners, Chairman Julius Genachowski and Robert McDowell, have recently announced their departures from the FCC.