[Nfbmo] Thank You, Concrete Result, Action Still Needed

Shelia Wright sbwright95 at att.net
Fri Feb 13 04:58:23 UTC 2015



I'd like to start by thanking all my NFB of Missouri  Colleagues who joined
us at the Missouri State Capitol on Monday and Tuesday of this first full
week of February. I'd also like to thank some valuable behind the scenes
work that those of us who had the benefit of fun  and fellowship while we
worked may not be aware of. These were Debbie Wunder and Carol Morgan who
made appointments and thus helped in a different way. Carol Coulter and
Elizabeth Coulter, faithfully prepare the packets we distribute and make
sure Rita can get them in advance and have them for us when we arrive at the
capitol. They are an integral part of our Jefferson City Legislative
Seminar. We missed some familiar faces at the capitol this year and welcomed
some first timers as well. Having said that, every member of our
organization can help by taking action when you receive email messages
asking for help; Also, be sure to help keep those who are in our chapters
who are not on email be aware of how they can help by making phone calls to
their elected officials. Together we can help blind Missourians "Live the
Lives We Want"


As the appointments were being made we heard the House of Representatives
would be having a "Technical Session" on Monday. None of us knew what this
meant other than we were unable to obtain as many appointments on Monday
afternoon as we are sometimes. Well, that sent me on the hunt to find out
what this new term to me meant and why some members would not attend this
session. However, we were able to see Senators and many of the members of
the House who did come in to conduct committee business. There's always a
new twist and an opportunity to learn about our legislative process when we
do Federation work  and no, unfortunately,  we can't predict these things in
advance. However, it was a good day at the Missouri State Capitol.


The concrete progress I referred to in the subject line is that HB 454 -
Accessible Voting In All Elections was assigned to the Elections Committee
sometime on Tuesday. I think that our message about at least giving this
bill a chance to go through the process was heard. Now our push will be to
see that a hearing is scheduled soon and that we have good representation at
the hearing. Good work team. Let's keep in on the legislators radar as a way
they can help blind and disabled Missourians.


I believe that there are a number of legislators that are interested in the
need for a researched based reading media assessment for determining whether
a blind student needs to read braille, print of both braille and print. It
takes a little longer for the House and Senate webpages to show filed bills.
I am very optimistic that if bill language has not already been filed that
it will be very soon. It may be that one of you will receive notice before
Gary or I. Please pass it on if you do.


It's very important to follow-up with those questions raised, information
you promised to provide, and notes of appreciation to those we met with. One
of the things that energizes me is watching members grow, hearing canes in
the hallways at the Missouri Capitol or on Capitol Hill. It's also
energizing to make an impression with individual members and have them
remember who we are and demonstrate this by making sure they make the time
to meet with us. Some of them really do get it. Education is powerful and
this is how we have and will leave a legacy.


Shelia Wright


More information about the NFBMO mailing list