John and Tom TeBockhorst
August 20, 2002
Our names are John and Tom TeBockhorst, and we
are members of the National Federation of the Blind. We would like to comment
on the Access Board's proposed draft ruling.
We have been members of the NFB for eleven
years, and in all that time, we have used our canes to get anywhere we want to
go safely. We strongly feel we do not need detectable warning tiles on tran
platforms, curb cuts, and other drop offs and ledges. We can find them
perfectly with our canes or dogs. We also feel that we do not need audible
traffic signals. We can cross streets safely by using our traffic training
skills. By stopping when the perpendicular traffic is going and go when the
parallel traffic id going.
My brother went to a orientation center and
learned to cross streets under sleep shades. I learned how to travel
independently by learning from other confident blind people in the National
Federation of the Blind. We learned how to find drop offs, curb cuts, ledges,
and escalators. This is the way all blind people learn to cross streets and
find obstacle, by using our canes.
We feel the money spent to install these
things that blind people don't need could be better spent on things blind
people need. This would include Newsline for the Blind, better Braille
literacy for kids, text books in alternative formats for blind kids at the
same time their sighted peers have theirs, Jobline, blindness skills for
seniors, and many other things that blind people need.
So please take our comments into
consideration and we strongly oppose the Access Board's final draft
guidelines. Keep out of the final ruling about installing detectable warning
tiles and audible traffic signals. Thank you for taking the time for reading
John & Tom TeBockhorst