[Greater-Baltimore] April Minute Message
nfbmd at earthlink.net
Tue Apr 12 18:49:01 UTC 2016
Congratulations to us! The 2016 session of the Maryland General Assembly
was very successful. The General Assembly kept the $250,000 in the 2017
budget that Governor Hogan appropriated for the Center of Excellence in
Nonvisual Access to Education, Public Information, and Commerce.
The Maryland General Assembly passed SB 417/HB 420, the Minimum Wage and
Community Integration Act. These bills will phase out the payment of
subminimum wages to persons with disabilities by 2020. For further
information about this important legislation see the Spring Braille
Spectator which will be on www.nfbmd.org next week.
The rights of disabled parents and caregivers who are involved in custody,
visitation and guardianship cases will be better protected because the
General Assembly passed SB 765/HB 976. If a judge rules that a disabled
parent or caregiver is not capable of caring for a child, the judge must put
his written findings and reasons in the record. The court must offer
supportive parenting services to the disabled parent or caregiver before
making a final decision about the disabled person's capabilities. These
bills also shift the burden of proof to the person that makes the allegation
that the disabled parent or caregiver is not capable of caring for the
Thanks to our advocacy efforts, the Maryland General Assembly did not cut
the 2017 appropriation for the Library for the Blind and Physically
Handicapped. Many thanks to all who visited Senators and Delegates, wrote
letters, sent email, made phone calls and testified in support of our bills.
Blind citizens will have a better future because we took action.
Make your voice heard by going to the polls and voting either on Election
Day, April 26 or by voting early, April 14 - April 21. Then, let NFBMD know
about your voting experience. Please fill out a short survey by May 2. We
are collecting data because the Board of Elections is mandating that
everyone use paper ballots except the disabled. Our ballots will be
segregated because their plan for having nondisabled voters use the machine
is totally inadequate. Since this is a new machine, we want to know what you
think of it. It will not take long to complete this survey, but it is very
important that you do so. Go to https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ZGFL99W.
Remember to look at the local channel of NFB Newsline for ballot information
such as names of candidates and contests.
Help us build a brighter future for blind youth in Maryland. It is not too
late to purchase Gospel tickets for Sunday, April 17, 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm.
The proceeds from this concert will benefit our youth stipend program. We
help youth go to various training programs in the summer so that they may
improve their blindness and gain self-confidence and independence. Place:
Pikesville International SDA Church, 4619 Old Court Road, Pikesville, MD
21208; For tickets: Sabrina Richardson (443) 824-6606, Latonya Phipps (443)
465-8761, Paypal for Will Call: www.nfbmd.org.
Calling All Students.
NFBMD will be awarding two scholarships at the State Convention. However,
the deadline for these John T. McCraw Scholarships is April 15. Email your
completed forms to the scholarship chairman, Jesse Hartle. His email is
<mailto:jesse.hartle63 at gmail.com> jesse.hartle63 at gmail.com. He will send
you an application if you need one. The time to act is now. If you snooze,
you will definitely lose.
We look forward to seeing all college and high school students at the
Stretching Our Limits:
Learning to Lift Expectations Through Exercise seminar. Date: May 14.
Time: 1:30 pm to 6:00 pm. Place: Diamond Cut Fitness at 8525 Murphy Road,
Laurel, MD 20723. Don't forget to bring money for dinner. Please RSVP by
April 22 by emailing <mailto:MDABS at nfbmd.org> MDABS at nfbmd.org or by calling
Chris Nusbaum at 443-547-2409.
Interested in Diabetes?
Don't miss our conference calls on the first Thursday of each month,
sponsored by the NFBMD Diabetic Action Network committee. Do you want to
learn more about the problems of accessible diabetic equipment? Check out
this youtube video and listen to Tom Ley's explanation.
Dates to Keep in Mind.
April 15. Deadline for application for NFBMD scholarships.
April 16. 2-5 pm at AMF Woodlawn Lanes, 6410 Security Blvd, Baltimore, MD
21207. Bowl-a-thon to benefit Maryland Parents of Blind Children. For more
information contact Melissa Riccobono, <mailto:melissa at riccobono.us>
melissa at riccobono.us or Teresa Graham, <mailto:teresagraham3 at gmail.com>
teresagraham3 at gmail.com.
April 17. Gospel Concert to Benefit NFBMD Youth Programs at Pikesville
Seventh Day Adventist Church.
May 5. Diabetes Conference Call, 7 pm. Call 641-715-3272. The access code
May 9. Senior Issues Conference Call, 10 am. Call 712-432-1500. The access
code is 759633#. Discussion Topic: Surviving or Living
May 14. The Stretching Our Limits: Learning to Lift Expectations Through
Exercise seminar. For more information, email <mailto:MDABS at nfbmd.org>
MDABS at nfbmd.org.
May 24. Event to Celebrate Global Accessibility Awareness Day, Towson
University, the building at 7800 York Road, 4:30-7:30.
June 4. NFBMD Board of Directors Meeting, time and place TBD.
June 30-July 5. National Convention, Orlando, Florida.
July 18-29 excluding weekends. Salisbury NFB BELL Program.
July 25-Aug 5 excluding weekends. NFB BELL Programs in Baltimore and Glenn
August 5. Annual Crab Feast, Columbus Gardens, Baltimore, Maryland.
August 18. Possibilities Fair for Seniors Losing Vision at BISM.
August 27. NFBMD Board of Directors Meeting, time and place TBD.
October 28-30. NFBMD 50th State Convention, Baltimore Marriott Inner Harbor
at Camden Yards Hotel, Baltimore, Maryland.
Sharon Maneki, President
National Federation of the Blind of Maryland
More information about the Greater-Baltimore