KCDHH Mourns Death of Senator Tom Buford
KCDHH staff is offering their condolences after the death of a
longtime lawmaker and friend.
State Senator Tom Buford, a Nicholasville Republican
and friend of KCDHHs, passed away at the age of 72. He represented a
number of central Kentucky counties over the past 30 years, was a
member of the Kentucky School for the Deaf (KSD) Advisory Board, and
was a member of the Senate Appropriations and Revenue Committee, Senate
Banking and Insurance Committee and the Senate Licensing and
“I am deeply saddened to learn of the passing of
Senator Buford,” said KCDHH Executive Director, Virginia Moore. “He had
a profound impact on our agency, and helped us navigate the legislative
waters supporting the interpreter licensure bill, expansion for funding
for the TAP (Telecommunications Access Program) distribution, continued
funding for KSD and quality of education for all. He will be greatly
Governor Signs Order Ending Restrictions
On June 11, Virginia Moore interpreted Governor Beshear marking
his final regularly scheduled COVID-19 briefing by signing an executive
order ending all Kentucky restrictions and thanking Kentuckians for
their hard work and sacrifices that saved countless lives in the
commonwealth. The Governor also lifted the statewide mask mandate for
most settings and ended capacity limits for restaurants, bars, and
other public venues. Masks are still required in medical settings and
nursing homes. The Governor also thanked close partners in the state’s
fight against COVID-19 over the past 15 months, including KCDHH’s
Get Your Vaccine to Register for ‘Shot at a Million’
If you are a permanent resident of Kentucky who has
received at least the first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19
vaccines or the one dose of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine,
you are eligible to register for a “Shot at a Million.” Permanent
residents of Kentucky are eligible even if they received the vaccine in
a different state.
Entry requires Kentuckians to provide personal and contact information,
including: name, birth date, email address, phone number, home address
and the name and location of the place that provided you with the
vaccine. Entry also requires agreement to the official rules of the
drawing and agreement to allow the Kentucky Department for Public
Health to verify your vaccination information. The website also offers
information about eligibility, how to find a vaccine appointment,
frequently asked questions and official rules. Click on the logo below
to access the website.
CDC Recommends Masks for Unvaccinated
If you’re unvaccinated, there are many types of masks you can use
to protect yourself and others from getting and spreading COVID-19.
When choosing a mask, choose one that fits snugly. A cloth or
disposable mask should be worn anytime you are indoors or outdoors with
people who don’t live with you.
Some masks are designed and tested to ensure they perform at a
consistent level to prevent the spread of COVID-19. These masks are labeled
to tell you what standard they meet. To find out more about the
different types of masks, click on the logo below.
New State Laws In Effect June 29
Most new laws approved
during the Kentucky General Assembly's 2021 session went into effect on
Constitution specifies that new laws take effect 90 days after the
adjournment of the legislature unless they have a special effective
date, are general appropriations measures, or include an emergency
clause that makes them effective immediately upon becoming law. Final
adjournment of the 2021 Regular Session occurred on March 30, making
June 29 the effective date for most bills.
Laws taking effect
that day include measures on various topics and can be found here.
KDE Provides Meals in Summer Food Service Program
From June to August, the Summer Food Service Program,
federally funded and administered by the Kentucky Department of
Education (KDE), will provide meals at no cost to children age 18 and
under who are from low-income families.
KDE partners with more than 170 school districts and
community organizations statewide to offer nutritious meals,
educational activities and recreational fun while school is out of
Last summer, more than 1,500 sites helped serve over
17 million meals to Kentucky children. The number of Summer Food
Service Program meals and meal sites has increased annually for the
past five years as awareness of, and participation in, the program has
There are several ways to find a Summer Food Service
•Text “Food” or “Comida” to 877-877
•Visit www.fns.usda.gov/summerfoodrocks or
Read the complete article by clicking on the logo
KCDHH/Heuser Institute Hosts Booth
Kentucky State Fair Dates Set for August 19-29
The Kentucky State Fair announced the most affordable
experience in more than a decade with three special
days for fairgoers to enjoy. Early bird tickets go on sale at 10 a.m.
July 2 through August 5 for $8 per person, which includes parking.
Early bird admission tickets can also be purchased
online at kystatefair.org/tickets or at participating Kroger locations.
Prices increase on August 6. Admission at the gate is $10 per person
and parking is $10 per vehicle.
Advance all-day Thrill Ville ride wristbands are $25
and can be purchased online at Ticketmaster with your admission ticket,
in-person at participating Krogers or at
In addition to announcing early bird tickets and
Thrill Ville wristbands, the Kentucky State Fair announced the return
of two popular special promotional days and a new morning event to
welcome more families
from across Kentucky.
Sunday, August 22: Military Sunday will
honor veterans, military members and their families with free admission
and optional discounted midway wristbands. Military I.D must be
presented at the entrance and will include up to four people. Parking
is not included.
Tuesday, August 24: Senior Day returns
with free admission for fairgoers ages 55 and up. Parking is not
included. There will be activities for seniors throughout the day.
Wednesday, August 25: The first ever
Sensory Friendly Morning will take place from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. with
free admission and midway tickets to family and fairgoers with sensory
processing differences. The midway will operate with minimal lights and
music during that time to create an enjoyable fair experience for those
with sensory sensitivities.
For more information on the 2021 State Fair, click on
the logo below and make sure you visit
the KCDHH booth located in the exhibit hall.
Governor Proclaims Interpreter
On June 16, Virginia Moore, Executive Director,
Rachel Morgan Kincaid, Executive Staff Interpreter, Rachel Rodgers,
Interpreter Referral Special, and Rebecca Kreutzer, volunteer Deaf
Interpreter attended a proclamation were in attendance as the Governor signed
a proclamation declaring June 16
“Interpreter Appreciation Day.” The Governor stated that when
KCDHH opened the door to language access for the deaf and hard of
hearing in Kentucky, he opened the door to access in all languages.
According to the director of the Office for Globalization, Kentucky has
diverse communities that represent over 100 countries and speak more
than 120 languages. The proclamation stated:
•There are nearly 700,000 deaf and hard of hearing Kentuckians
who benefit from the work of KCDHH; and
•Team Kentucky interpreters donated hundreds of hours
to protect their neighbors from COVID-19; and
•Interpreters made sure every person in our
commonwealth knew they were part of Team Kentucky and that we would get
through this together; and
•Interpreters across Kentucky are preparing our
people to reach across borders – and cultural barriers in their own
communities – to solve big problems; and
•Many Team Kentucky interpreters have been recognized
as Kentucky Colonels due to their extraordinary service to the
•All Team Kentucky Interpreters won the Kentucky
World Languages Association’s Amici Linguarium (Friend of Languages)
Award for their dedicated leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Pictured (left to right) is Rachel Rodgers, Rebecca
Kreutzer, Governor Beshear, Virginia Moore, and Rachel Morgan Kincaid.
LAD Picnic/Vaccine Day Hosts Over 100
KCDHH staff attended Deaf Vaccine Day on June 19 at Louisville
Summer Picnic in Fern Creek Community Center. KCDHH and the Cabinet for
Health and Family Services (CHFS) Department for Behavioral Health,
Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities partnered with the
Louisville Association of the Deaf (LAD), Louisville Metro Department
of Public Health and Wellness, and the Fern Creek Community Center to
host Deaf Vaccine Day. Over 100 individuals participated in the LAD
picnic and several received their COVID-19 vaccine. Interpreters were
provided for those who were interested in receiving their vaccines.
Most of the 100 attendees had already received their vaccinations, but
eight more deaf individuals were vaccinated that day.
Team Kentucky Named
PRSA Communicator of the Year
On June 24, Governor Beshear, Virginia Moore, Dr. Steven Stack,
and Team Kentucky posed for a photo in the Governor’s office, as they
were honored by the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA)
Bluegrass Chapter with the 2021 Communicator of the Year award. This is
the second year that Virginia Moore has won the award. She shares this
year’s award with Dr. Stack. The Bluegrass Chapter serves
communications professionals in Louisville, Kentucky and the
surrounding areas, including Southern Indiana. Pictured below (left) is
the “Team Kentucky” communications team and (right) Virginia Moore with
This Summer, Let
Your Kids Go Wild!
Four Kentucky children (18 or younger) will each win
$1,000 to put toward a college savings account this year by
participating in a summer reading program at their local public
library. The Kentucky
Department for Libraries and Archives (KDLA), the Kentucky Higher
Education Assistance Authority (KHEAA) and Kentucky Saves 529 have launched Go Wild! College Savings Summer
Reading Sweepstakes as part of the 2021 summer reading program. The
sweepstakes runs through August
13. After signing up children for the summer reading program at
their local public library, parents, grandparents, or guardians can
enter each child for the sweepstakes by clicking on the logo below.
Endler Smith Named to ELP 2021-2022
KCDHH’s Jessica Endler Smith, Telecommunications Access Program
(TAP) Coordinator, was one of 15 employees selected to participate in
the 2021-2022 class of the Education and Workforce Development
Cabinet’s Emerging Leaders Program (ELP). As part of Lt. Governor,
Jacqueline Coleman’s, initiative to develop talent and create a
pipeline of up-and-coming leaders, the Human Resources Training and
Employee Relations kicked off its inaugural pilot leadership
development program on June 30. Participants meet the first Wednesday
of the month for workshops, trainings, and presentations. The program
also has a project component that will be the crux of the program,
requiring individuals to develop and present their project for
approval, then present the results to a review panel in an
& Voices SuperHEARo 5k Photos
The Kentucky Hands & Voices SuperHEARo
5k was held at White Hall State Historic site, Richmond, on May 28.
Participants were encouraged to dress up as their favorite hero. Awards
were given for “Top Overall Male” and “Female Finishers,” “Best Dressed
Male” and “Female Superheroes,” “Best Dressed Wonder Pet.” Registrants
also received a Finisher’s Medal. See event photos below.
Two Kentucky High
School Students Learn
UAH GenCyber Camp
Two Kentucky high school graduates were among fifteen deaf and
hard of hearing (DHH) high school students from at least nine states
learning about cybersecurity and computer technologies during the fifth
annual GenCyber Camp for deaf and hard of
hearing students. The camp took place at the University of Alabama in
Huntsville (UAH), a part of the University of Alabama System. From
Kentucky, Tia Moors, (below, right) graduate from Kentucky School for
the Deaf, and Haley Toler, (below, left) graduate from Rowan County
High School, Morehead. For more about the program, visit the website here.
American Football Film
Makes Noise About
Audible is a new coming of
age documentary short from Netflix that follows high school athlete Amaree McKenstry and his
friends during their senior year. This 38-minute documentary is about
the team’s final semester. It starts with the brutal loss of a game
that breaks a 16-season winning streak, taking in the ordinary trials
and tribulations of adolescence, as well as some of the particular
challenges of preparing to step out of the deaf community to face adult
life in the hearing world. The soundtrack fades in and out, blurring
and unblurring to reflect what the players
themselves hear of it, and keeps in all the advertent and inadvertent
noises the students make as they communicate in American Sign Language
(ASL). It is also set against the backdrop of grief for teammate Teddy
Webster, lost to suicide. It finishes with the homecoming game, where
the team meets with either triumph or disaster. The video opened on
Netflix July 1. To read more about the review, click on the photo of McKenstry below.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many of the sites that normally
host summer camps for deaf and hard of hearing youth are facing a lot
of uncertainty. As a result, KCDHH has compiled the list below to serve
as a starting point for parents to search for camps that will be
available summer, 2021. (Before
registering for summer camps, most camps require that participants
receive their COVID-19 vaccination. Use vaccines.gov to schedule an
Note: Deaf and hard
of hearing children have the same rights to attend summer camp as their
hearing peers, and cannot be denied admission due to their hearing
loss. The Americans
with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires that summer camps (both
private and those run by towns or municipalities) must provide
reasonable modifications of their policies, practices and procedures
when necessary to enable campers with disabilities to participate fully
in camp programs, unless the camp can demonstrate that the necessary modifications
would fundamentally alter the nature of the services and activities
offered by the camp. Camps must provide reasonable accommodations
unless they can prove it would pose a danger to other campers or cause
an undue financial burden. This applies to sports camps as well as
traditional camps such as 4-H and Conservation. Always sign up as soon as possible
and let the camp administrators know that your child needs a specific
accommodation. Even when a
specific accommodation may not be feasible, there are often options
that can still provide a happy camp experience. The parents/caregivers and camp
administrators should work together to identify the best accommodations
for the child. If you feel like your deaf or hard of hearing child is
not being provided the necessary accommodations for their camp
experience, please let us know, and we will be happy to help advocate.
Virtual Camp Discovery
Focused on serving children, ages four to 12, who are DHH, kids
of deaf adults, or children who use sign language, but all are welcome.
Explore Your Future, Rochester, NY
July 18-July 21
For DHH college-bound students exploring their futures after
high school graduation.
If you know of
other camps, please send them to us at email@example.com.
Conference: August 6-8
Registry of Interpreters (KYRID) and the Bluegrass American Sign
Language Teachers Association (BGASLTA) will host a joint conference at
the Louisville Galt House on August 6-8. Nine sessions with 13
Professional Studies hours (CEUs) will be available. Early bird
registration is now available. For registration information, conference
schedule and workshop descriptions, visit the website here.
These Boots are Made for Leading
The Hands & Voices
Leadership Conference brings together family leaders from all over the
world to develop skills, to receive training on providing leadership to
others and to impact local systems. It is the only conference of its
kind devoted exclusively to teach family members with children who are
deaf or hard of hearing to be effective agents of change. The
conference will be held at the Franklin Marriott Cool Springs,
Franklin, TN. For information and registration, visit the website here.
Register: ALDAcon 2021: Passport to Accessibility!
Invite your family and friends to this year’s
Association of Late-Deafened Adults (ALDA) Convention in Niagara Falls,
New York, October 6 to October 10. Engage in workshops designed for the
deaf/Deaf, hard of hearing, and hearing family and allies. Explore the wonders of Niagara Falls on both the United States and Canadian
ALDA looks forward to seeing you at the 2021 ALDAcon
in Niagara Falls, NY! Simply complete the online registration or print
and submit your registration via mail – click
here. The early bird rate has been extended
until July 16.
DeafNation Conference July 31 to August 4, 2022
With DeafNation canceling its 2021 conference, you can
now register for the 4th DeafNation
World Expo & Conference that is set for July 31 to August 4, 2022.
Click on the logo below for more information.
Deaf Women United
Opens Registration for 2023
Deaf Women United has
opened registration for the 2023 conference that will be held in
Chicago, July 26 to July 30. The early-bird rate is available through
February 28, 2023. For more information, click on the logo below.
Deaf Soccer Association Hosting Youth Clinic
The USA Deaf Soccer Association is holding
a Youth Soccer Clinic for children of all ages on Sunday, July 18, at
Louisville’s Champions Park, 2050 River Road. The clinic will be from
9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. For more information, click on the logo below.
Ohio Association of the Deaf Day Special Events
The Ohio Association
of the Deaf will be hosting:
Deaf Day at King’s Island: June 26
and October 16
Deaf Day at Cedar Point: August 14
and October 2
or click here for
July’s KCDHH Spotlight Q&A is
Nancy Perry, who represents the Kentucky Association of the Deaf (KAD)
on KCDHH’s Commission Board. Nancy’s hometown is Franklin, KY. She
graduated from the Kentucky School for the Deaf (KSD), Danville, KY.
She went to Gallaudet College for a few years and then transferred to
the National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID), Rochester,
NY with a major in Applied Arts (AA).
She also earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA). Her current
occupations are Freelance Arts & Graphic Design, Deaf interpreter
for more than 20 years, teaching ASL in the Bowling Green, KY community
college for more than 25 years, and ASL tutoring. She has been a KAD
representative with KCDHH since 2017. Read more here.
Over-The-Counter Hearing Aids Update
Some people avoid purchasing hearing aids because of their hefty
price tags: Costs for a single hearing aid range from hundreds of
dollars to more than $4,000, and Medicare and most private insurers often
do not cover the expense. Not surprisingly, affordability is a
“significant barrier” to purchasing hearing aids, according to a paper
in The Hearing Journal, a
hearing health care publication.
However, the types (and prices) of hearing aids available to
consumers could soon change. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is
in the process of drafting proposed regulations for over-the-counter
(OTC) hearing aids, a brand-new category of hearing aids. Once approved
and regulated, OTC hearing aids will likely be more affordable and
accessible to consumers than most other FDA-approved hearing aids on
the market right now. Read the full story here.
For Health Care
Ways HL Patients
Can Alleviate Social Isolation
Did you know that patients with
hearing loss (HL) are 7.5 times more likely to report social isolation?
And with social isolation comes other significant mental and physical
health impacts. That’s why social connectedness is such a crucial
component for better overall health outcomes for health care
professionals and their patients. This brief, Technology Can Reduce Patient Isolation, explores research
on the topic as well as available technologies that can help health
care professionals. Click here
to read more.
Apple’s Sound Recognition for Iphones
If you are deaf or hard of hearing,
you can use Sound Recognition to have your iPhone alert you to
important sounds like car horns and doorbells. See how it works in
Apple’s video on YouTube here.
Xbox Party Chat Adds TTS and STT
Team Xbox believes gaming should be inclusive, approachable, and
accessible to everyone. That includes making it easy for gamers to play
and communicate together. Party chat, used by gamers around the world
to talk to their friends while playing, now supports converting speech
into text and text into speech. Each of these features can be used to
help gamers who are deaf or hard of hearing and/or cannot or choose not
to speak. Learn more here.
365/Office 365 Licenses to Support Live
Speaker Attribution in Teams
Microsoft will soon expand support for live transcription with
speaker attribution within Microsoft Teams. Live transcription can
identify who is speaking and attribute text to a meeting participant.
The transcription appears in real-time during the meeting and is also
available for review later. It's a handy feature for people who are
deaf or hard of hearing or people who are in a loud environment. Read
IF YOU HAVE AN EVENT YOU’D LIKE TO
ON THE CALENDAR, PLEASE EMAIL US AT:
COVID-19 Vaccine Resources
Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention (CDC)
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and
Other EEO Laws
Kentucky Governor News
The official Team Kentucky source for Vaccine
Registry of Vaccine Location
KCDHH COVID-19/Vaccine Important Links
for Deaf and Hard of Hearing
KCDHH Facebook Page
For those who have deaf family members who use sign language, consider
downloading Sorenson Wavello and/or the ZVRS Sivo app on your smartphone. This app
makes it possible for you to see your loved ones on your screen next to
Other KCDHH Resources:
Telecommunications Access Program (TAP)
Landline or wireless equipment for
Kentucky residents who are deaf, hard of hearing, speech impaired or
have both a hearing and vision loss.