Archive for July, 2012

Healthy Living for Protecting Hearing

HearingAs a person ages the natural aging process impacts the body in numerous ways. Individuals who have not followed a healthy lifestyle, one that includes exercise and proper eating, may experience muscle and joint problems. Weight gain may also become a problem as the body’s systems age. Discomfort with normal body movements may develop and water retention may become a problem.

In addition to the effects the natural aging process has on muscles, joints and weight maintenance, the senses are also affected, specifically, hearing. Hearing may decrease to the point of needing a hearing device such as a hearing aid. But just as an individual is able to make healthy changes to his or her diet and increase regular exercise to improve the condition of the joints, to build muscles and to manage weight, an individual is able to take steps in protecting his or her hearing so that the progression of hearing loss is interrupted.

Environmental Noises

Individuals need to be aware of the environmental noises they are exposed to daily. For those working in loud environments such as construction workers, factory workers, mason workers or those who work in a loud establishment, ear plugs should be used as a regular precaution and preventive measure to protect hearing. Ear plugs can be purchased at any pharmacy at a low cost.

The Use of Headphones

Listening to music with headphones greatly increases the chances that hearing loss will be progressive. This is especially true if the volume is set so high that outside noises cannot be heard. Not using headphones is the best action an individual can take to stop this contributory factor that aids in hearing loss. If this is not possible, when listening to music with headphones, a person can be sure the volume is set to a safe level if the sounds of the environment can still be heard (such as people talking or cars passing).

These are two preventive measures individuals can take to prevent hearing loss. They are easy to apply and require little effort that returns huge rewards in maintaining hearing and preventing further hearing loss.

When Hearing Loss Interferes with Daily Activities  

If hearing loss has progressed to a point where having a conversation in a quiet setting is difficult, consulting a doctor for hearing tests is recommended. With the assistance of a professional, he or she can advise a person with hearing loss on the best course of action.

If it is determined that a hearing aid is needed, be informed and knowledgeable. In following the tips above you will be able to help protect your hearing in the long run.

John O’Connor – Guest Blogger


July 31, 2012 at 11:14 am Leave a comment

Action Alert: Tell your Senators to Ratify the CRPD Today!

We are one step closer to ratification! On July 26th, the 22nd Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the first step in the process to ratify the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) was completed!

 The United States Senate Foreign Relations Committee held a mark-up hearing and voted the treaty out of committee by a 13-6 count. It is our hope that the CRPD will be brought to the floor for a full vote by the members of the Senate within the next few days.

 The CRPD is a non-discrimination treaty seeking to achieve the same goals as the ADA and other existing disability laws in the United States: to empower individuals with disabilities to achieve economic self-sufficiency, independent living, inclusion, and integration into all aspects of society. The CRPD is important to all people with disabilities because it embodies equal treatment and non-discrimination in access to employment, educational, and housing opportunities.

The treaty needs at least 67 Senators to vote “aye” in order for it to be ratified. We need you to call your Senators and tell them to support bringing the treaty to the floor for vote, and to vote in favor of the treaty once this happens.

Act Now:

Call, write, or email both of your senators today! Identify yourself as a constituent and urge your senators: “Please bring the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) to the floor immediately and support ratification of the treaty!”

July 30, 2012 at 6:05 pm Leave a comment

Without the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act)

I have a hard time imagining what my life wouldTony and Sheri be like without the ADA.  It’s true that I had my disability for a long time before the ADA became law in 1990 (I was born with Friedreich’s Ataxia, but it really didn’t begin to have a negative impact on my life until I was about 25 years old which was in 1993; I didn’t even start using a wheelchair until 1998!), but access certainly wasn’t as big a deal for me then as it is for me now.

The ADA has opened so many doors for me (that’s just a figure of speech; I’m not talking about doors with automatic openers…although they’re nice too!) to do so many things that make my life so much more enjoyable and better in general, that without it there is no way in the world I would be as independent as I am now.

Because of the ADA, I am able to go out with my wife (who is also a wheelchair user) to eat at restaurants, to attend sporting events, to the theater, or even just window shopping.  Curbcuts, ramps into buildings, elevators, and accessible transportation all play a huge part in my life almost each and every day.

Does the ADA make everything perfect for me?  No, of course not, but I don’t expect that to be the case.  I want the same opportunities as every other American, and that includes the opportunity to fail.  I am an American who uses a wheelchair; I just want my rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

By Tony Trott – Peer Mentor

July 26, 2012 at 10:44 am 6 comments

We’re Pushing the CRPD Forward!

The hearing has been moved to Senate Dirksen Office Building, Room G-50.  It is no longer in Hart 216, it will be in Dirksen G-50.  Hope you can make it!

Beloved Colleagues in the Struggle for Justice:

I love you!  Justin loved you and continues to love you!

Today I have an urgent message to share with you and solicit your support/actions.

Back in 1994 in Sydney, Australia, Justin had an honor of sharing the podium with Most Reverend Desmond Tutu on the subject of Human Rights and Disability.  Justin appealed to the global leaders, “…In most nations people with disabilities are segregated from the mainstream of culture.  The hard truth is that individuals with disabilities will never be able to fulfill their magnificent potential until their rights are mandated and enforced by law, and implemented in real life by a society that empowers…  We must convince every nation to enact and implement laws and policies that protect the rights of the new humans, and empower them to fulfill their potential…”

On Thursday, July 12, at 9 am, the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee will hold a hearing in the Senate Hart Office Building 216 Senate Dirksen Office Building G-50 on the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.  I urge you, your colleagues and friends to attend this vital hearing.  Arrive early!  For further details from USICD and DREDF, please scroll down below my message.

Colleagues, now is the time.  The US has a chance to join once again the ranks of world leadership in the area of disability and human rights.  Let us show our Senators how much we care about and support ADA and CRPD.  Let us wake them up on July 12th!  “CRPD, Yes!”


Together, but only together united in love and truth, we shall overcome!

Leading On Together No Matter What!

I love you!


July 9, 2012 at 1:07 pm Leave a comment

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