Perspectives will be updated regularly with profiles and guest blogs from our members and allies, essays, news, photos, videos, and other features. Come back often!
The following is the transcript of Bob Williams’ eulogy delivered at the March 8, 2023 memorial service for CommunicationFIRST’s late Board member Judy Heumann. The service was live-streamed by the Adas Israel Congregation in Washington, DC, and a captioned, ASL-interpreted recording can be viewed here. Bob’s eulogy begins at time-stamp…Read More
Like others in the disability community and around the world, everyone at CommunicationFIRST is devastated by the untimely loss of our badass colleague, Judy Heumann. Judy was elected to our Board of Directors in June 2019, months before CommunicationFIRST publicly launched. She played an indispensable role in helping the organization…Read More
Content Warning: This post discusses police brutality against disabled people. On January 26, 2023, police in Huntington Park, California, fatally shot a 36-year-old Black man and double amputee, Anthony Lowe. Police had been called because of allegations that Lowe had stabbed someone. Video footage of the incident shows Lowe “[outside…Read More
I hear their painful cries jut up from cracks on the street.
The block is a scorching frying pan,
frying my brothers on the pavement.Read More
A Working Definition and Request for Input For centuries, people with significant speech disabilities have been treated as if we should not be seen or heard. Our ability, right, and basic need to express ourselves have been routinely overlooked and denied. Our words have been questioned because we do not…Read More
Guest blog by Jordyn Zimmerman, M.Ed. On November 18, 2022, CommunicationFIRST Board Chair Jordyn Zimmerman gave an invited presentation at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)’s Annual Convention in New Orleans entitled, “SLPs as Gatekeepers: Reimagining, Challenging, and Pushing Our Assumptions.” The presentation generated lots of discussion, with one attendee commenting,…Read More
Bob Williams Testimony on behalf of CommunicationFIRST on the Rights of Children and Youth to Effective Communication and Quality Health Care in Pediatric and Other Health Care Settings Supporting Access for Everyone (SAFE) Initiative https://safedbp.org/ October 6, 2022 Good afternoon. I am Bob Williams, Policy Director of CommunicationFIRST. We are the…Read More
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CommunicationFIRST joins other disability rights advocates to express dismay at the public and media response to a current political candidate’s communication disability. Over the past few weeks, the media has focused unduly on communication-related accommodations reasonably requested by the candidate, and cast the candidate’s apparent audio processing…Read More
On October 3, 2022, CommunicationFIRST submitted comments to the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on its proposed rules to implement and enforce Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act. These regulations include protections for people who cannot rely on speech to be heard and understood, and require…Read More