[Pibe-division] Presidential Proclamation for White Cane Safety Day
CDanielsen at nfb.org
Thu Oct 15 21:43:39 CDT 2009
Dear Fellow Federationists:
Below is the text of this years White Cane
Safety Day proclamation issued by President
Obama. As you will read, the proclamation
highlights the importance of Braille
literacy. It is clear that our advocacy on this
issue is having an impact on policy makers at the
highest levels of our government. We continue to
accomplish great things for blind Americans. Happy White Cane Safety Day!
Chris Danielsen etc.
White Cane Safety Day, 2009
By the President of the United States of America
All Americans deserve the freedom to participate
in every aspect of our society and pursue their
full measure of happiness. For blind Americans,
the white cane is a potent symbol of that
freedomaffording them greater independence and
mobility. Today, we renew our commitment to
provide full inclusion and equal opportunities
for those among us who are blind or have low
vision. As Americans, we must nurture a society
that values the unique abilities and individual
contributions of all its people.
Individuals who are blind or have low vision are
less constrained and better integrated in our
country than ever before, but much work remains
to ensure they have the opportunity to reach
their full potential. My Administration is
committed to securing full and equal access to
education and employment for blind Americans and
all those with disabilities. The American
Recovery and Reinvestment Act substantially
increased funding for the Individuals with
Disabilities Education Act, as well as vocational
rehabilitation services, including job training, education, and placement.
For Americans who are blind or have low vision, a
white cane is just one of a wide range of tools
that sustain independence and productivity. In
recent years, refreshable Braille displays and
speech synthesis devices have given these
individuals access to the Internet, unlocking a
new frontier of limitless possibility. As we
encourage the development of new assistive
technologies, we must also improve access to
existing tools. The Braille code has opened a
doorway to literacy for countless individuals,
but far too many blind children in our country
are not learning to read it. By improving
Braille literacy, we will secure a brighter future for these young Americans.
In the 45 years since White Cane Safety Day was
first proclaimed by President Lyndon Johnson,
Americans who are blind or have low vision have
achieved substantial progress. As leaders in
government and business, academics, and the arts,
they have made remarkable contributions to our
Nation, proving that sight is no requisite for
success. We will continue to strive for a more
just and equitable Nation that celebrates
diversity in all its forms and promotes the full
inclusion of all individuals in our communities.
By joint resolution approved on October 6, 1964,
(Public Law 88-628, as amended), the Congress
designated October 15 of each year as White Cane
Safety Day to recognize the contributions of
Americans who are blind or have low vision.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the
United States of America, by virtue of the
authority vested in me by the Constitution and
laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim
October 15, 2009, as White Cane Safety Day. I
call upon all Americans to observe this day with
appropriate ceremonies, activities, and programs.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand
this fifteenth day of October, in the year of our
Lord two thousand nine, and of the Independence
of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fourth.
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