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News and Views April 2016

National Federation of the Blind of Arizona
News and Views
April, 2016

In This Issue
Greetings from Our President
Word on the Street
Guess Who Just Took Another Trip Around the Sun
NFB Praises Clinton about Remarks on Employment for people with Disabilities
Accessibility Survey
New Opportunities for Careers in Rehabilitation for the Blind
Facebook Using AI to Help Blind People See Images
A lot More Needs to be Done to Help Blind People Use the Internet
Cabbage, Bread, and Dough
Deaf Blind Access Technologies and Strategies
Phoenix Ends Vending Machine Fight Over Blind entrepreneurs
Book Shelf, 2 Selections
Writing in the Dark
Healthy Choice, Healthy Living, Self Esteem
Travelling Safely
Protect Your Apple ID by Enabling Two Factor Authentication
Auction! Auction!
East Valley Tupperware Fundraiser
West Valley News
Arizona Association of Blind Students Seminar
East Valley Raffle
The Recipe Box, Crockpot Sloppy Joes
Debbies List
Stay Connected
Grins and Groans, the Usual Endings


The NFB of Arizona newsletter has been produced in a way that makes it easier to stroll through the articles. If you are using JAWS, System Access, NVDA, or Window Eyes, press the letter H to move through the headings. If you wish to go back to a previous article, simply press the shift key + the letter H. For MAC users, press Control Option Command plus the letter H and to go backwards through the articles press Control Option Command shift plus the letter H.

Greetings from Our President

Hello, fellow Federationists,

What a glorious spring! Our chapters and divisions are planning events and engaging members. The Arizona Association of Blind Students are holding their Spring Seminar at SAAVI April 9 in Tucson and all blind students are invited for the all day Saturday seminar. Please RSVP to student president, Isaac Swinger by phone or email immediately!

520 609 4830, or,

Our East Valley is engaged in fundraisers in which all of can be involved (see the stories which follow to see how participating in these fundraisers can benefit you personally). Our Tucson and East Valley chapters are planning their spring picnics in May. Check with your chapter president to see how you can be involved!

Blind college and grad students can apply for one of two Arizona state scholarships until May 31. One scholarship is for $1,000.00 for traditional students, and the other $1,000.00 scholarship is for students who work full time and go to school part time. One of the scholarship application requirements is an interview with affiliate president, Bob Kresmer, so email or phone him if you are interested in competing for these scholarships.

The Arizona affiliate board allocated funds to provide up to $500.00 each for financial assistance for NFBA members to participate in our July National convention. This is specifically for members who have already participated in his or her first national convention, but are unable to completely afford to participate a second time! If you qualify and are interested, please contact Bob Kresmer quite soon.

The NFBA Technology committee is offering to assist NFB Newsline users in using the various and expanded features of NFB Newsline. We have found that, sometimes new users find the service overwhelming or confusing, or are not confident in exploring the new options available on Newsline. If you need a little tutoring, Please email or call Technology committee chair Sharonda Greenlaw at,

602 281 5955, or,

Please enjoy this monthly newsletter, and let us know about your news to share with your fellow Federationists,

Bob Kresmer

888 899 6322

Word on the Street

Sorry folks! No items were sent in for this month.

Got any news to share with us? Send it in to:

We look forward to sharing your news with our extended family here within the NFB of Arizona.

Guess Who Just Took Another Trip Around the Sun

Happy Birthday to the following NFBA members!

April 13, Matt Mazak, from Mesa.

April 16, Sami McGinnis, from Mesa.

April 28, Rocky Smith, from Tempe.

April 30, Brad Kuhn, from Phoenix.

Please help us build our birthday list, by sending your first and last name, date of birth, (year optional), and the city you live in to:

NFB Praises Clinton about Remarks on Employment for People with Disabilities

By Chris Danielsen

The National Federation of the Blind commented today on recent remarks by Hillary Clinton in which she called for ending the tiered minimum wages for people with disabilities. Mark A. Riccobono, President of the National Federation of the Blind, said: The National Federation of the Blind applauds Secretary Clinton for stating boldly and unequivocally that she rejects the discriminatory practice of paying workers with disabilities subminimum wages. We call upon the other presidential candidates to join with us and over seventy five other organizations of people with disabilities in supporting the repeal of Section 14(c) of the Fair Labor Standards Act, and to reject the misconceptions and low expectations that have for too long kept people with disabilities from achieving our dreams.

A provision of the Fair Labor Standards Act dating from the law's enactment in 1938, known as Section 14(c), allows facilities to apply for special wage certificates that permit them to pay workers with disabilities subminimum wages. About three thousand entities pay more than 250,000 workers with disabilities wages as low as pennies per hour, according to 2016 statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division.

>h2>Accessibility Survey

By James Alan Boehm

Greetings. We are students at Middle Tennessee State University and invite you to participate in our research project. We are conducting a study to understand the problems or barriers that you encounter when reading health information, visiting a doctors office, clinic, or pharmacy. The survey will only take about 20 minutes of your time. Individuals who complete the survey can choose to enter a drawing for one of two, twenty five dollar Amazon gift cards. Together, we will make a difference.

New Opportunities for Careers in Rehabilitation for the Blind

By Fredric K. Schroeder, Ph.D.

Structured Discovery Cane Travel (SDCT) and Structured Discovery Rehabilitation have been demonstrated to be among the most innovative and effective forms of rehabilitation training for individuals who are blind or visually impaired. Louisiana Tech University has operated its Orientation and Mobility program on this model successfully for 18 years, with upwards of 90 percent successful employment and employer satisfaction rates.

Louisiana Tech is excited to announce that along with its O&M program, it has expanded its training and is launching a brand new concentration in Rehabilitation Teaching for the Blind.

Scholarships are now available for qualified individuals seeking one of the following degree paths:

Master of Arts in Industrial/Organizational Psychology with Concentration in Orientation and Mobility.

Master of Arts in Counseling and Guidance with Concentration in Rehabilitation Teaching for the Blind

Orientation and Mobility Graduate Certification

Why me?

· The field of educating and rehabilitating children and adults who are blind is deeply rewarding and life-changing.

· The job market is wide open; currently, we receive four times the number of employer requests than we have graduates to provide.

· Training occurs on campus in Ruston, Louisiana, and can be completed in as little as one year.

· No prior background or experience in blindness is necessary, we will teach you everything you need to know.

· Scholarships are provided on a competitive basis to qualified persons and can cover costs for attending the university.

· Scholarship also support travel to conferences, trainings, and field based experiences at Structured Discovery training programs.

Who can Apply?

Individuals must already possess a Bachelor’s (B.A.) degree from an accredited university, have a grade point average of 2.5 and obtain a minimum of 287 (Verbal and Quantitative) on the Graduate Records Examination (GRE). Individuals must also be willing to attend courses on campus in Ruston, Louisiana on a full time basis.

What is the Catch?

· Payback through service is required. Agreement to receive scholarship funding requires commitment for you to work in the field of rehabilitation for two years for each year of scholarship support you obtain.

· Scholarships cover at least tuition and fees but may cover living and travel costs as well.

· You have to move to Ruston, work hard, study harder, and have the heart to be an O&M or Rehabilitation Teacher of blind persons.

Where do I get started?

For program details, visit:

Send an email for more information to:

Call Edward Bell to discuss your application:

318 257 4554

Facebook Using AI to Help Blind People See Images

By Shaomei Wu, Hermes Pique, and Jeffrey Wieland

Every day, people share more than 2 billion photos across Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp.

While visual content provides a fun and expressive way for people to communicate online, consuming and creating it poses challenges for people who are blind or severely visually impaired. With more than 39 million people who are blind, and over 246 million who have a severe visual impairment, many people may feel excluded from the conversation around photos on Facebook. We want to build technology that helps the blind community experience Facebook the same way others enjoy it.

That is why today we are introducing automatic alternative text.

Automatic alternative text, or automatic alt text, is a new development that generates a description of a photo using advancements in object recognition technology. People using screen readers on iOS devices will hear a list of items a photo may contain as they swipe past photos on Facebook. Before today, people using screen readers would only hear the name of the person who shared the photo, followed by the term quote, photo quote when they came upon an image in News Feed. Now we can offer a richer description of what is in a photo thanks to automatic alt text. For instance, someone could now hear, quote, Image may contain three people, smiling, outdoors. Quote.

This is possible because of Facebooks object recognition technology, which is based on a neural network that has billions of parameters and is trained with millions of examples. Each advancement in object recognition technology means that the Facebook Accessibility team will be able to make technology even more accessible for more people. When people are connected, they can achieve extraordinary things as individuals and as a community, and when everyone is connected, we all benefit.

We are launching automatic alt text first on iOS screen readers set to English, but we plan to add this functionality for other languages and platforms soon. While this technology is still nascent, tapping its current capabilities to describe photos is an important step toward providing our visually impaired community the same benefits and enjoyment that everyone else gets from photos.

A lot More Needs to be Done to Help Blind People Use the Internet

By Casey Williams

Huffington post

For the blind, navigating the digital world can be as tricky as moving through the physical one.

Some companies have tried to make their sites easier for the world’s 39 million blind people to use. Facebook, for instance, just introduced a new image recognition feature that lets blind users quote, see quote, photos on the site.

But blind advocates say fixes like Facebook’s do not solve the biggest obstacles blind people face online.

Quote, We think it is pretty cool, quote, Mark Riccobono, the president of the National Federation of the Blind, told The Huffington Post. Quote, But we get concerned about flashy technology. Quote.

Quote, For the average blind person, it is not whether they know something is in a photo or not that determines whether they can do online banking, pay their bills or buy groceries, quote, said Riccobono, who is blind.

Even as the Internet becomes an increasingly necessary feature of modern life, much of the web is difficult for blind people to use effectively.

A range of technologies exist to help blind people navigate the web. Braille keyboards and text to speech programs convert text to audio, which allows blind people to consume information on the web aurally. The devices can also transform speech into text, which allows blind people to quote, type. Quote. These devices often work well with thoughtfully designed websites. But they hit snags when sites have elements that are not clearly labeled or are incompatible with keyboard shortcuts, which blind people rely on.

Quote, Websites that have been designed from the beginning with accessibility in mind are easy for blind people to use ­ they are easy to navigate, you can jump around pretty effectively and get information as effectively as a sighted person, quote, Riccobono said. But, he said, many sites still have quote, artificial barriers quote, that make performing basic online tasks difficult for blind users.

One of the biggest barriers is unclear labeling. In order to describe what is on a given webpage, text to speech programs comb through the source code for labels that describe the page’s elements. They then say those labels aloud. If elements are not clearly labeled in the source code ­ if a checkout button, say, is just labeled quote, image quote, ­ it can make navigating the page very frustrating for users who rely on spoken descriptions to move around the site.

Quote, If I go on an eCommerce website and put stuff in my cart, but get to the payment screen and have trouble because the checkout buttons not labeled ­ that is a high degree of frustration, quote, Riccobono said.

Web developers can use accessibility guidelines for blind users when designing their websites. But even when they refer to those guidelines, web companies do not always do a good job implementing them, Riccobono said.

Quote, If you do not test [your code] for accessibility, and a problem arises and it is not dealt with, then the code gets launched anyway, quote, he said. Once finalized, it can be difficult to retrofit websites to improve accessibility.

Blind advocates have urged the Obama administration to update the Americans with Disabilities Act to include explicit standards for web accessibility for blind users. While President Barack Obama initially seemed amenable to the standards ­ in 2010, he named them among quote, the most important updates to the ADA since its original enactment quote. Last year his administration quietly postponed consideration of new web accessibility standards until 2018.

For Riccobono, updating the ADA is a necessary step toward equal access for the blind.

Quote, We need to do in the digital world the same thing we have done in the physical world, quote, he said. Quote, The lack of standards makes it very difficult for businesses to understand when they have met a high standard of accessibility. Quote.

Cabbage, Bread, and Dough

by Marc Maurer

The power of a nation may be measured by its capacity for moral suasion, by its intellectual accomplishments, by the cultural artifacts which result from the efforts of its people, by its military might, or by the magnificence of its architecture. Most of these tests are a measure of what the country has already done, not what it will do. There is, however, a less well known and more pervasive standard for indicating the position or power of a nation. This is the willingness of others to accept its money. Historically within a region of the world the currency of one nation predominates. The Roman denarius traveled with the Roman army during the conquest of Europe and the Middle East. The influence of this Roman coin was so great that it remained a standard unit of money in parts of Europe from the time of the Roman Empire until the French Revolution in the late 18th Century.
In the latter half of the 15th century and during much of the 16th Spain built and maintained the most powerful naval force in the western world. Spanish explorers sent treasure ships to the mother country from Central and South America. Because of the large amount of gold and silver that came into the European economic system, there was a period of major inflation. However, the predominance of Spain in the world was felt in the economies of European countries. The business of the Continent was conducted largely with Spanish money.
In 1588 an English fleet defeated the Spanish armada. At about the same time English explorers circumnavigated the globe. By the 19th century there were English colonies in every part of the world. It was said that the sun never set on the British flag. The monetary system of the world also changed. The British pound sterling became the international currency. London became the banking center (and, to some extent, the power center) of the world.
In the first half of the 20th century the most readily accepted international currency changed again. President Theodore Roosevelt called a summit conference to discuss monetary standards and to stabilize world trade. The dollar became the predominant unit of international exchange. Whenever the money of a country was to be valued, the standard of measure was the U.S. dollar. At the same time the military power of the United States was regarded as second to none, and the intangible commodity called yankee ingenuity was envied and admired.
If a nation is to be a predominant world power, its money will have preeminence in world trade. Whether it is that the nation makes the money important or that the money makes the nation important is immaterial. It is true that no important monetary system has ever been established except in connection with a powerful nation. It is not that preeminence in economic affairs is necessarily a precondition to a countrys becoming a world power. However, a nation which holds preeminence in its currency will inevitably be among the most powerful in the world.
Until recently there were those who wondered whether the Soviet Union would conquer the world. It now appears that this will not be the case. However, if there should be a threat from the Soviets in the future, it is unlikely to be determinative unless a major portion of world trade begins to be transacted in rubles.
One of the significant currencies in the world today is the Japanese yen. During much of this century Japan has been a major participant in world affairs. In the early nineteen hundreds the naval power of Japan defeated Russia. During the past twenty five years the Japanese have increasingly captured important segments of the American and European markets. It is worth wondering whether the military power of Japan failed to achieve victory in World War II because the Japanese had not achieved sufficient economic strength at that time. Perhaps more attention to monetary matters would have won more battles for Japan.
Such speculation is given heightened plausibility when we remember that one of the weapons used in war is usually counterfeit money. The theory is that if a sizable amount of well made counterfeit money is distributed in the enemy country, it will cause disruption of the economic system because of fear of accepting that country's currency.
We in the National Federation of the Blind devote a great deal of time and effort to fund raising. This is among our most significant activities, not only because of the money we generate (though that is of tremendous importance), but also because fund raising requires us as blind people to adopt roles essential for success. The transformation of a segment of society from one class to another demands that many members of that class undertake tasks which they have not traditionally performed. To do fund raising we as blind people must organize our time, offer a service to others, consider the problems of administration, solve the difficulties of transportation, recognize the need to establish systems of accounting and security, and cope with all of the other details incident to the operation of a complex structure of daily performance and coordinated effort. Whether they say it or not (and, for that matter, whether they even know it consciously), most people begin with the underlying notion that this level of sophisticated activity is too much for the blind, and unfortunately many of us who are blind (at least subconsciously and by our behavior) agree. We of the National Federation of the Blind reject this idea, not only in specifics but also as a general principle of philosophy and commitment. Make no mistake. The money we get through fund raising is important, but even more valuable may be the establishment and continuation of the patterns of daily conduct made necessary by the demands of funding our movement, the patterns of self respecting, responsible, first class human beings.
The moral of the story is clear: Build a program, raise money, believe in ourselves and our cause, and behave like the successful people we are and are increasingly becoming. Let us do these things, and we will inevitably be preeminent in matters concerning the blind. This message is not aimed just at state and chapter leaders. It is meant for all of us, from the newest member to the national president. Find a way to recruit Associates; join the PAC Plan; raise money to buy DIG policies, for yourself and as a chapter project; sell candy or cookies (the task is not too humble); seek donations from corporations and individuals; and find imaginative ways to attract contributions. These activities will be helpful to the organization because they will broaden our economic base, but they will be at least as important to you and me (and also to the organization as a whole) because in the process of building, we will move ever closer to our final goal of first class status and full membership in society. Day by day the average Federationist is becoming increasingly more self assured, confident, knowledgeable, and successful.

Deaf Blind Access Technologies and Strategies

By Deborah Kendrick

Access World

Ask any seasoned deaf person if they would prefer coping with no sight or no hearing and, pretty consistently, you will get the answer that it is far easier to be deaf than blind. On the other side of the sensory arena, ask any seasoned blind person the same question and you will get an absolute declaration that blindness is the easier sensory loss to address.

In either case, part of the solution to working around a sensory loss is to use the other in its place. Blind people learn to see what is around them by using sound. Deaf people learn to hear what is around them by fine tuning their sense of sight.

When the sensory input channels for both sight and hearing are diminished or diminishing, the challenge of finding methods for communicating, participating and, in short, fully engaging in the joys of life loom larger, but are never insurmountable.

In the 21st century, where technology blossoms exponentially on an almost daily basis, there are plenty of work arounds to be found. Because AccessWorld regularly addresses the use of technology for those who are blind or have low vision, this article will look at the combined vision/hearing disability from the vantage point of someone who has little or no hearing and a secondary disability of impaired vision.

Approaching the problem is simply for perspective in this article. There are an estimated four million Americans with combined vision and hearing disabilities and as we live longer, that number is steadily increasing.

Tell it Like it is:

With any disability, candor simplifies. If you have central but no peripheral vision, carrying a long white cane informs those around you that you have difficulty seeing, rather than allowing them to assume that you are rude or clumsy.

Similarly, if you tell those around you that you have difficulty hearing, they will generally speak up. If you do not tell them, you leave room for the mistaken assumption that you are not paying attention or not very smart!

Take Charge of Your Own Sound Environment:

When you are blind or visually impaired, your hearing does not magically increase, but your attention to what you hear does. Hearing becomes more acute. In a social context, this means you listen more carefully to what is being said and how. Many blind people work in professions where the nuance of communication is essential, psychology, social service, law, and journalism, and individuals find that these nuances can be gleaned using clues other than the visual ones of body language and facial expression.

But if your hearing has decreased, the game changes somewhat. Perhaps you can hear just fine in a quiet room if the person speaking to you is three or six or perhaps eight feet away, but if the environment is noisy or the person addressing you is at a greater distance, their voice is inaudible or unintelligible.

The solution is to do everything you can to take charge and create an audio environment that works for you. At a meeting or in a restaurant where there will be ambient noise, choose a seat with a wall behind you. Thus, only the sound in front of you will come into your ears. Select a seat that is centrally located, placing you within equal range of as many of the voices as you want to hear as possible. If there is a choice, always choose smaller rooms over larger ones, and smaller groups over larger ones as well. In a lecture or performance situation, sit in the first or second row, and as directly in front of the person speaking or performing as possible. If background music is playing (and competing with the sounds of human voices that you want/need to hear), ask if it can be turned off or the volume decreased. Apply the same principles in your own home or the home of a friend or family member. If people are gathered for a meal, choose the most centrally located seat at the largest table. If the focus of the gathering is to share a movie, sit close to one of the speakers.

Sound Technology:

It may sound clichéd, but there has been no better time to experience hearing loss than in the 21st century! Digital hearing aids are tiny and powerful. Many of them are nearly invisible and, while the sound may not be exactly what it would be if your biological hearing was perfect, the enhanced volume and clarity such devices can provide is astonishing.

As with any change, there is an adjustment period involved in learning to hear with hearing aids. You may experience the sense that your clothes are crackling or your hair is, that your own footsteps are clattering, or that the commonplace sounds of running water or opening food packages are suddenly raucous. When hearing aids are new, fine tuning them to the individual takes a bit of time and expertise. Three or four trips to the audiologist, along with some patience and a willingness to analyze the situation, will improve your experience and have you reveling in the joy of hearing birdsongs and human conversation again with ease.

But hearing aids are just the tip of the technological iceberg when it comes to hearing loss. Bluetooth speakers and headsets can enhance the volume and audio clarity of your TV, telephone, audio book player, and more. A high performance Bluetooth sound bar, for example, can be paired with your TV, tablet, smartphone, and more, to deliver room filling sound that is loud and clear for everyone.

Similarly, both wired and Bluetooth headsets can bring the sound from most electronics directly to your ears. Using a headset with your iPhone, for example, makes it much easier to hear and understand any audio from the phone, whether you are listening to music, an audio book, spoken GPS directions, or the other person in a phone conversation. In addition to the earbuds included in the purchase with most smartphones, there are a number of high performance wired and Bluetooth headsets to augment volume and clarity. Look for ones with inline volume controls.

Direct Connections:

In addition to the variety of external speakers and headsets designed to enhance sound for everyone, the person who wears hearing aids has even more options for a direct connection to sound. From wearables to mini microphones, the hearing health marketplace is exploding with a smorgasbord of direct connection devices. Want to be sure you hear every word of a movie playing on your television? There is a device that can plug into the auxiliary port on your TV and deliver its audio directly into your hearing aids. The same technology can be used for direct delivery of sound from virtually any electronic device in your home or work environment.

Want to be sure you hear everything a presenter has to say? Ask him or her to clip a small microphone like device to a jacket (or wear it around the neck) and every word will sound as though it is being spoken directly into your ear. Again, the same device could be used by a friend or family member walking with you through a mall or amusement park. Even though he or she is 20 feet away, with a direct connect FM or Bluetooth device in hand, all commentary regarding the route you are taking or the description of sights around you will be easily heard and understood.

The guidance of an audiologist will be needed to select the best wireless hearing accessory, and to make sure that one is selected that is compatible with your particular hearing aids. You will also need the assistance of an audiologist or other hearing professional to pair your new accessory appropriately with your hearing aids. Phonak makes several excellent accessories but there are other manufacturers as well.

Sometimes, tweaking your hearing technology to play nicely with your vision technology can be a challenge, but as more people experience a combined vision and hearing loss, the larger the pool for sharing tips and tricks becomes. The bottom line is, just as you learned that life can be lived to the fullest without perfect vision, so you will also learn in time that impaired hearing can be accommodated with technology.

Phoenix Ends Vending Machine Fight Over Blind Entrepreneurs

By Dustin Gardiner

The Republic

Blind people in Arizona are supposed to get first dibs on opportunities to operate vending machines in government buildings, but Phoenix had been in a long running dispute with the state on following that law.

This spring, though, the tussle is ending after the city inked an agreement with a state agency that advocates for entrepreneurs who are blind.

In January, the city and Arizona Department of Economic Security signed a contract to let people who are blind manage drink and snack machines at dozens of facilities throughout Phoenix, from libraries to recreation centers. Those operators will take over those vending sites in the coming months.

For Adam Bevell and other blind vending machine operators, the deal has been years in the making and offers a chance to improve their financial independence. On Friday, Bevell stocked machines at his first new city facility.

Quote, It has been quite a struggle, quote, Bevell said of the push to get into city facilities. Quote, I am ecstatic. We have been looking forward to this for quite awhile and kind of holding our breath. Quote.

When The Arizona Republicfirst reported on the standoff a year ago, a DES official said the city had been evasive and uncooperative about making an agreement. But public attention and legal persuasion from the state helped change the tone, state officials said.

Timothy Jeffries, director of the Arizona Department of Economic Security, hailed the agreement as a victory for people who are blind.

Quote, I am always glad when people recognize the wisdom to be found in laws, quote, Jeffries said of the city. Quote, In my opinion, it should not take that law to inspire us to be innovative, to productively engage (blind people). Quote.

Jeffries is referring to a state law that was at the center of the conflict between Phoenix and blind advocates and entrepreneurs. Known as the, mini Randolph Sheppard Act, it gives operators who are blind priority to manage vending machines and cafeterias on state, county and city property.

The law is the states version of the federal Randolph Sheppard Act, which Congress adopted in 1936 to create jobs for people who were both blind and unemployed during the Great Depression.

Phoenix's move affects a handful of operators, but the opportunity could be life changing as many blind people struggle to find work. Unemployment among people who are visually disabled is more than 70 percent, according to the National Federation of the Blind.

Bevell, 40, said access to city facilities will allow him to get closer to his goal of growing a business large enough to support himself, his wife and their four children.

He began his career as an elementary school teacher, but felt forced to quit his job in his late twenties when he lost most of his sight due to a condition called retinitis pigmentosa, a genetic degenerative eye disease. He started losing his vision as a teenager, but the condition accelerated in his twenties.

Losing his eyesight so far into adulthood was devastating, Bevell said. He struggled with feelings of worthlessness and depression as he tried to figure out what to do next. His wife took on two jobs just to support the family.

Then, Bevell said he found a new sense of self worth and independence when he enrolled in the states Business Enterprise Program several years ago. The program trains people who are visually impaired to run their own businesses operating vending machines, cafeterias, coffee shops and snack bars in public facilities.

Quote, It is empowering to feel like you are making a difference, contributing to society. For me, it is very gratifying. Quote.

Some such operators primarily work behind the scenes and hire employees to restock vending machines for them, but Bevell plays a role in every part of his business. On a typical day, Bevell and his brother in law, who drives, make numerous stops to restock vending machines at government buildings throughout central Phoenix.

But Bevells dream of building a larger business has been on hold. He said he has been waiting almost three years for the city to let him expand.

On Friday, the wait ended when Bevell stocked his first new vending machines at a city water facility. His route already included one city building, but Phoenixs agreement with DES will allow him to add many more. He said he also expects to hire another employee.

When Bevell learned about the deal with the city, he said he was so excited that he waited until he got home to tell his wife. She teared up when she heard.

Quote, I could not tell her over the phone, quote, Bevell said. Quote, Being able to break that news to her, I cannot even put it into words. It is overwhelming, honestly. We see it as a blessing. Quote.

The agreement allowing blind entrepreneurs to operate more vending locations did not happen easily. DES officials said the issue was resolved after the Arizona Attorney General's Office got involved and reiterated that state law gives such operators priority to run vending sites on city property.

Yvette Roeder, a city spokeswoman, said the city will lose revenue as a result of its agreement to let operators who are blind take over vending machine locations, but she said the city does not have an estimate for how much it might lose.

When asked about criticism from DES officials, Roeder responded briefly, saying Phoenix is working to quote, transition the vending locations as quickly as possible. Quote.

In 2014, Phoenix attempted to find a company to operate vending machines without offering the opportunity to blind entrepreneurs first. The city sought bids from vending companies, and bids were to be evaluated based on how much revenue they could generate, among other criteria.

State law prohibits the city from collecting money from vendin gmachine entrepreneurs who are blind. Phoenixs request for bids prompted objections from the state, and Bevell and other entrepreneurs said the city appeared to be chasing dollars at their expense.

The city received no qualifying submissions and pulled the request for bids. City officials began negotiating with DES, but those talks became tense after the city included a lengthy list of requirement for vending machine operators. DES said the final agreement is mutually beneficial.

There are a handful of blind businesspeople who operate vending machines in Phoenix buildings, but many of the machines have been run by other companies that pay the city to use its space. Now, they will take over more of those locations.

Jason Sauer, who manages the state program, said the new agreement could signal the first step of an improved partnership after repairing years of a lack of communication. He said the city and DES are halfway there in resolving the issue.

Sauer said the relationship stands to bring more opportunities. The state is now negotiating with Phoenix for blind people to operate other vending machine sites. DES and the city also recently made an agreement to operate a coffee kiosk in the lobby of City Hall, which currently houses a Starbucks.

Quote, I think their understanding of what the law is or is not, and I think also understanding what the blind vendors’ capabilities and abilities are, (has) evolved quite a bit, quote, Sauer said.

Book Shelf, 2 Selections

Do you love to curl up with a good book? Been meaning to read that best seller? Here are two book selections that you may wish to read! If you have a book that you absolutely loved and want to share your thoughts about it with us, please send in your write up to:

Book Number 1, The Residence: Inside the Private World of the White House


Written By Kate Anderson Brower

Reading time: 10 hours, 52 minutes.
Read by Carol Jacobanis.
Genre: Biography, U.S. History
Journalist Kate Andersen Brower offers an intimate account of daily life in the White House for its service staff who tend to the needs of the First Family. Brower includes first person anecdotes, interviews with staff, and archival research to illuminate the details of life in the White House. Some strong language. 2015.
Download The residence: inside the private world of the White House

Book Number 2, The Templar Legacy: A Novel of Suspense


Written By Steve Berry

Reading time: 15 hours, 41 minutes.
Read by Paul Michael.
Genre: Suspense Fiction
Cotton Malone, retired top operative of the U.S. Justice Department, comes to the aid of his former supervisor Stephanie Nelle, who is pursuing the legendary treasure of the Knights Templar. Violence, strong language, and some descriptions of sex. Commercial audiobook. 2006.

Download The Templar legacy: a novel of suspense

Writing in the Dark

By Robert D. Sollars

The second meeting of the Writing in the Dark, writers group was conducted on April 4 at the Arizona Center for the Blind & Visually Impaired (ACVBI), located at 31st & Roosevelt, in Phoenix. The group was specifically formed to help blind writers gain the necessary knowledge so they may publish their work.

We read the following items at this meeting;

The poem The Power Within by Toni Young, Vice President, was presented and was put into the handbook as an inspiration for the group as a forward.

Other writings by members were also read. They were:

What the Hell am I Doing? By Robert D. Sollars

Chapter 1 of a memoir by Kevin Ford

Chapter 1 of a memoir by Judy Hartmann

After these readings were completed, then, some tricks, tips, & etc. were shared by Sollars on getting published and the trials & tribulations of being a writer.

The next meeting will be at the ACBVI office on June 1st at 4:30 PM. Jen Wolfe, owner of Wolfe Creative, in Phoenix, will be our guest speaker. She will discuss the writing & editing process for serious writers.

The group is serious about writing & getting published and the groups goals are to push everyone forward on that goal with educational items, experience, guest speakers, reading of individual writings, as well as writing exercises.

If you wish to become involved please call Sollars at, 480 251 5197.

Healthy Choice, Healthy Living, Self Esteem

By Lawrence MacLellan

Hello everybody, this month I would like to chat about self esteem, confidence, and feeling good about yourself.

Good health involves a well rounded approach: drinking water, cutting back on sugar, getting enough sleep, and exercising. This months topic deals with being confident within yourself, which can make a difference in your health.

A few years ago I attended a meeting that involved about 30 blind people. The people running the meeting were chatting about the importance of finding work and taking some kind of university or vocational training. They talked about what options were available to blind people and the information was good, the ideas were good, and it sounded hopeful.

I pointed out that I felt that blindness can be a disability but that lack of confidence was just as much of a problem for some people, and that comment opened up a real floodgate of conversation.

Blind people have so many limitations set on them, starting with their parents, teachers and their community. It is very easy to set limitations on ourselves, especially when others have set the bar so low for us. I am sure they are doing this to protect us and they cannot see how they would be able to do anything if they, themselves, were blind.

There are a lot of amazing blind people that have gone beyond most peoples expectations, and I would say to them, hats off to you.

But, for the people that struggle with self esteem, you are not alone. Like in the meeting I attended years ago, I think that most people do not want to talk about it, and so I have 3 questions for you.

1. Is lack of confidence stopping you from making healthy changes in your life?

2. Are you just not motivated to make any changes. You are okay just the way you are?

3. Are you not motivated because deep down, you are not confident?

Now, it is true that if you are working, you have more income. More income means more options and it seems that most people that have a job, do have more confidence, and so not having a job can affect your self esteem. This could be said for the sighted world as well. So you are not alone.

I believe that when someone is confident and sure of himself, this positive attitude is adding to what makes them a healthy person.

You still need to do all the other things as well, like eating better, exercising, drinking water and yes you guessed it, getting the right amount of sleep.

The following are a few ideas on how you might gain a little more confidence, and please remember, this is only my opinion. You may have your own ideas on the subject but if this helps even one person then I have done my work.

1. Chat to others about what is going on in your life. Do not keep it a secret.

2. Keep in touch with the sighted community, get to know your neighbours. Get involved in a church group, library or some other group of sighted people.

3. Get in better shape, do the things that you need to do to feel better, exercise, lose weight and start taking better care of yourself. Feeling good will boost your confidence.

4. Set goals, start with things that are not too difficult , this would include hobbies, crafts or any projects that gives you a sense of accomplishment.

5. Learn new things, expand your knowledge. Learn more about your computer, learn from books and from the people that are in the know.

6. Ask for help, there is no shame in asking. It is not a sign of failure. Most people would be glad to help. Do not let your pride get in the way.

7. Make new friends, get outside more. Be more visible in your community. It is hard for people to get to know you if you never leave your home.

8. 8. Avoid the people that do not treat you right. Hang out with people that are nice to you. You do not need people that put you down. It is better to have 1 or 2 good friends that are good to you then lots of people that pull you down and keep you stuck.

9. Be nice to people, help when you can and treat others as you would like them to treat you. It feels good to go the extra mile for someone else.

10. Remember, what goes around, comes around, and so being positive can only work to your advantage.

Until next time, make the change you want to see.

In the words of Woody Allen, Eighty percent of success is showing up.

Traveling Safely

By Robert D. Sollars

That time of year is here again. No, I am not talking about allergies. I am talking about vacations and being safe when traveling to somewhere unfamiliar. These tips and ideas will also go for those innumerable touristy spots around this little marble.

Many of the tips that I have given you in the past also apply to when you are traveling. But I will reiterate them and add a few more.

1. While in a hotel room, keep the door locked and the security latch engaged at all times. The security latch is a device that most hotels will have on their doors to keep someone out, even if they have a key.

2. Keep your cash, credit cards, or other forms of payment in small amounts while out and about, and never flash them around. For men, try to carry your wallet in your front pockets to keep pick pockets at bay. Women try to keep your purse small and the strap around your neck with it tucked under your arm or in front.

3. Never buy so much that your hands are full or your vision is impaired, more than it may already be, when walking back to your hotel or car. This would be prime time for a thief to notice that you are a tourist. And that means they can take advantage of you.

4. Never buy anything out of the trunk of a car or back of a semitruck. If you do, get ready for a scam. The box you get could be full of rocks or something else that weighs about the same. And scammers will show you a sample of the real thing to get you to buy.

5. Despite the fact that you are on vacation, try to keep your wits about you and know what is going on around you. Situational awareness is of paramount importance when you’re in an unfamiliar place. And even with a trusted friend or family member one of you has to remain on alert to any potential danger or issues.

6. Always get a receipt for everything you purchase, whether you use cash, credit, or debit cards. This will allow you to audit your bank statement after you get home and dispute any fraudulent charges that may appear. Remember scammers can, and will, steal receipts out of trash cans and spend your money if they have your card number.

These tips are just as efficient and important for those taking trips here in the United States, as well as North or South of the border, or away in Europe, Africa, or Asia. Try not to worry about crime while traveling. Try and have fun while your are busy exploring the world! And, hey, do not forget my souvenir.

Protect Your Apple ID by Enabling Two Factor Authentication

Reprinted from the Blind Post Ads

We use our FaceBook, Google, and Apple IDs every day. Many of these now include mobile payment systems and tons of other personal information we would not

want thieves to have, so lets look at how to protect each of them, starting with the Apple ID.

What Does iCLOUD Two factor authentication Protect?

Apple uses trusted devices to prove that you are the person.

Signing in to your Apple ID on a new device

Making a purchase from the iTunes or Ibooks stores from a new Device

Getting Apple ID support from Apple

How It Works:

When you do any of the activities mentioned above, Apple sends a four digit code that will appear on a secondary trusted device. This can e your Windows

PC and iPhone, for example.

I highly recommend that you set up your quote, trusted, quote, phone number because it is easier to retrieve the code via text message.

Once you have it, enter each digit into the corresponding edit field.

Now you can proceed with making your purchase or account changes.

Please note that this is not the same as Apple’s two step verification. In fact, if you have been using that feature, you must turn int off before enabling

the new two factor authentication on your Apple ID.

A Word Of warning About Third party Apps:

I use Fantastical as my calendar app. The other day I got a message that informed me that my iCloud password was incorrect. I entered it and pressed ok.

The dialogue reappeared.

I was positive both my Apple ID and password were correct, so what was going on? I read the dialogue again and noticed it mentioned app specific passwords.

This means that it is possible to go to the quote, manage my Apple ID quote, page and give a specific third party app access to your iCloud account by creating a specific

password used only for that purpose.

Apple will store these passwords so that you can review them later. I copied the one I created to One password as well as into Fantastical so that the

Quote, incorrect password quote, dialogue would disappear.

I have heard that some users must create a new app specific password per device, but this has not been the case for me.

If you must set up a quote, trusted quote phone number or change the answers to your security questions, expect a two to three day waiting period.

I recommend that you change them by making your answers random, meaningless phrases so hackers are less likely to guess them. If you are not the creative

type, feel free to use One password, or your password manager of choice.

Store your answers in a safe place you can access easily.

To some people, entering a code every time you sign in on the web sounds too painful. If you decide the extra layer of security is worth it, here is how

to enable it:

On your iOS device, go to settings then iCloud.

Double tap on your name and Apple ID at the top of the screen.

Enter your password when prompted.

Next, tap on, password and security.

Finally, double tap on, two factor authentication to turn it on. You should receive your first verification code on your verified trusted device. Since

these are difficult to see with voice over, I recommend that you double tap on the quote, send a code via text message quote button.

You have now successfully made your Apple ID a bit more secure.

Auction! Auction!

By Debi Chatfield

Do people tell you that you make the best fudge and chocolate chip cookies in town? Do you have an old iPhone lying around that you no longer use, because you have upgraded to the latest and greatest? No longer using that Victor Stream as often as you used to do? Or, maybe your speciality is creating a beautiful afghan, or hand crafting a vase out of wood?

Looking for a place to donate these items? Well, we have got just the place for you! Donate them to our 2016 NFBA Fall Auction coming up in Tucson, from September 9 to 11.

Help us now to collect items for donation. All proceeds go to our state affiliate for continuation of our important programs, education, and sharing of our philosophy.

Important details:

· Items must be $20 or more in value. Items below $20 should be donated to the Door Prize committee.

· Items should be hand delivered to your chapter or division President, no later than September 5.

· Please email a description of your item, such as, the brand name, condition of the item, age of the item and any pertinent information you feel the winner of the item would need to know, and send it to:

· Auction item descriptions will be displayed on our website at:

It is due to the generosity of you, the members of the NFB of Arizona, that we are able to continue providing so many resource and outreach opportunities to those who need to know what we have to share; the truth about blindness! So, thank you for your donation, and let’s get busy and make this auction the best we have ever had!

Here is another one of our items up for bid at this years convention! Write in and get your items on the list as well!

Digital Talking Stem Thermometer

Donated by Debi Chatfield

This unit has a clear talking voice, and a Centegrade to Farenheit exchange. It also contains a low battery indication. Also includes a proactive probe cover with clip.

East Valley Tupperware Fundraiser

By Megan Homrighausen

Dear Arizona Federation,

Lets get this Tupperware fundraiser started!

Saturday, April 9

3pm to 6pm
4158 East Hope Circle

Mesa, AZ 85205

You are invited to join us for a Spring Tupperware Fundraiser to support the East Valley Chapter of the National Federation of the Blind of Arizona. Your donations help blind people get scholarships, as well as sending them to conventions, where they learn that they truly can live the lives they want. If you are unable to attend, you will be able to participate by following the below link:

Order online starting April 1st through April 30th.

Please share this information with your family and friends.

Thank you for your help in spreading the word! If you have any questions, please contact me at,

480 510 6196

West Valley News

By Marcus Schmidt

For those who did not make it to our last meeting, here are the results of our chapter elections:

Marcus Schmidt, President

Nicki Jeffords, Vice President

Kristen Johnson, Secretary

Kay Spears, treasurer

John Bolton, Board Member

Lori Kirsop, Board Member

Arizona Association of Blind Students Seminar

By Isaac Zwinger

The Arizona Association of Blind Students would like to welcome you to a Spring Seminar being held at the Southern Arizona Association for the Visually Impaired in Tucson, Arizona, at 3767 East Grant Road. Our agenda will be essential, enriching, and lots of fun. Our theme for the seminar is, transition. it will be held on Saturday, April 9, from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM, and the registration is free. All we ask is some general contact info, such as your name, email, and phone number. We look forward to seeing you there!!

If you would like to contact me, just email or call at,

Or, 520 609 4830.

East Valley Raffle

By Debra Smith

The East Valley Chapter will hold an exciting raffle, with a $1000 cash Prize to be awarded. The raffle is a way for ticket sellers to earn money to be put towards a state or national convention. For every $100 worth of raffle tickets that an individual sells, $50 Will go towards the individuals cost of attending a convention. Monies raised from this fund raiser will not only benefit the East Valley Chapter, but will be shared with the state affiliate as well.

This 6 month sale begins February 20, and will finish August 20. All money and tickets must be turned in by the August East Valley Chapter meeting. Individuals from other chapters are also welcome to sell tickets, so that they may earn some money to go to convention as well. We will get checks to people at least a week prior to our state convention.

Someone has asked, if they sell $100 worth of tickets, but they are not going to convention, can they still have the $50? No, this is a fund raiser for the chapter, and funds can only be used for the state or national conventions. Also, if you turn in a total with an odd amount, such as $130.00, you will only receive $50.

If a member gets busy and wants to use their share for national convention, then let me know in June and we can work the details out.

Tickets are $5.00 each.

Ways to sell raffle tickets:

Make a plan. Make a list of family events, and make sure you take your tickets with you. Send a letter or email to each of your friends and family members, and tell them what you are doing, and why the NFB is important to you. Ask them to purchase a ticket. Develop a Facebook page. After you sell a raffle ticket to someone, make sure you send them a personal thank you note. If we do this fund raiser in the future, thank them again and give them an overview on the past years fund raiser . Be sure to ask them to support our organization again.

We will have volunteers from the fund raising committee to help you develop a Facebook page and to write letters if you wish. We will also develop a webpage, where people can purchase the tickets online.

Please, do not hesitate to ask for help. The current members on the committee are Debi Chatfield, Joe Goode, Garret Mooney, Brittney Bomboy, Megan Homrighausen, and I. If you would like to join us, please let me know.

You may contact me with questions at,

480 299 4541

The Recipe Box, Crockpot Sloppy Joes

By Debi Chatfield


2 pounds, lean ground beef

1 medium, onion, chopped

2 cloves, garlic, minced

1 cup, ketchup

1/2 bell pepper, seeded and chopped

3 tablespoons, Worcestershire sauce

3 tablespoons, brown sugar

2 tablespoons, prepared mustard

2 tablespoons, cider vinegar

1 1/2 teaspoons, chili powder

hamburger buns


In a heavy skillet, brown ground beef with onion and garlic. Drain off excess fat.

Combine ketchup, bell pepper, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, mustard,

vinegar, and chili powder in slow cooker. Stir in ground beef mixture. Cover and

cook on LOW setting for 5 to 7 hours. Serve spooned over hamburger buns, with a

side salad or French fries.

Serves 6 to 8.

Debbies List

No, this is not Craigs List, but it is the next best thing! If you have something to sell, or announce, send us your ad, and we will post it, as long as there is space available in the newsletter. Send your ads to:

** Would you like to stay safe at home, school, work, online, and everywhere in your daily life? I may be able to help you. I can come to your location and give a presentation on multiple areas of security and safety concerns.

Presentation topics range from situational awareness, home security, workplace/school violence prevention, and holiday shopping safety. I can offer helpful tips for our Arizona community. Being blind myself, I have adapted these valuable techniques for our specific needs. Contact me at, 480 251 5197, or

with Blindness Security Workshop in the subject line. My fee is variable depending on travel distance. I look forward to assisting all of you with your security needs. Have A Safe Day!

** With Spring on its way, now is a good time to be thinking about the upcoming cycling season! There is an email list, specifically focused on empowering the blind into the arena of bicycling. We are a friendly community, dedicated to helping you to reach the next level, in your fitness goals.

Even if you do not own a tandem, there may be local opportunities that we can uncover, together. So, click on the below link and come join us. Introduce yourself and enjoy the ride! Federationists greatly encouraged!

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.
Ron Burzese, NOMC
916 716 5400

** Welcome to Leblond Tech Services, where we put our 20 years of experience to work for you.

Whether your needs are personal or business related, we have the solution that is right for you and easy on your pocketbook.

We offer Instruction in the latest mainstream and specialized technologies, such as Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook, Power Point, Access, Dragon Naturally Speaking, JAWS for windows and much more.

We also set up and configure all forms of hardware, from single computers to business networks

For more information go to,

** Are you blind and a lover of craft making? Would you like to share your love
of crafting with other like-minded people? Would you be interested in
learning a new craft taught by and geared specifically for blind folks? If
the answer to any of these questions is yes, then visit the NFB Crafters
Division website at
We offer a free email list for discussion of all crafts with friendly folks
ready to help in any way.
We also offer classes in both phone conference call as well as email
formats, which are only available to members of our division. The cost for
membership is $20 per year allowing a member to take as many classes as they
wish. Having offered 72 classes in 2014 in a wide variety of crafts, you are
certain to find classes to peak your interest.
Check out our membership page, join during our early bird special in March,
and get four months free.
For questions, please contact our president Joyce Kane at,

Cathy F.

** a Useful, Stylish New Idea!
When you go out for a walk, or running to class, are you looking for a way to easily carry your water bottle and cellphone, in a way that would be both stylish and practical? Are you looking for something that can hold many items, yet is not heavy on its own? Well look no further than the Invisibag! This is a stretchable belt like strap that clips easily around your waist. It contains two zipperred pockets, one for a conventional water bottle, and one that is the perfect size for your smartphone. With the water bottle pocket you will be able to carry around a water bottle, without the need to carry a purse or backpack, as it simply hangs from your belt. The cellphone pocket allows you to carry your cellphone in a safe, secure environment. You can feel your cellphone vibrating, yet it is difficult to steal as one must open the zipperred pocket to get the cellphone out. And when you're done using it for the day, just take all your items out and let it sit around your waist. it is so light you will not even notice.
As these are imported products, you will not find them anywhere on the U.S. market. I personally handle all the importing and costs myself. I'm asking only $20 per each one.
Please send me an email at, if anyone is interested.

Harrison Tu

** Join a Free Voice Chat Site Community on the Web!

Would you like to meet other blind or visually impaired individuals from across the country and around the world? Do you like challenging interactive games, old time radio, learning about adapted cooking techniques, a monthly book club, product presentations, chess instruction, computer tech help, Bible Study, a blindness support group, a weekly talent show, iPhone discussions, and much more? Join our free chat community at:

Stay Connected

Sending this newsletter to friends? Tell them they can receive this monthly newsletter by subscribing to:

If you have any changes in your contact info for the state roster, chapters, or divisions, please write to:

and we will send your info to the appropriate people and make the necessary corrections.

Contact our President, Bob Kresmer at:

888 899 6322, or write to:

If you would like to submit an announcement or article for publication in this monthly newsletter, please send your submission to:

Grins and Groans, the Usual Endings

Submitted by Bob Kresmer

Have you heard the story of the magic sandwich? Well, nevermind, it is just a bunch of bologna.

What do you get when you cross fish with elephants?

Swimming trunks.

Can February March?

No, but April May.

Debi Chatfield


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