Tuesday, February 21, 2017

My Privilege

During ASL HERE a recent workshop, a question was posted for all the attendees. How can you use your privilege to benefit the Deaf Community?

I've done some online searching -- most of it is focused on racism.

Can a hearing person experience audism? When my wife and I go to restaurants or other places we quickly become attention-getters when people notice us Signing. We've even experienced loooong waits because of people being afraid of trying to communicate with us. I've had people make me out to be a "saint" for marrying a "disabled" woman. Um. She's a wonderful woman and much more of a "saint" than I am.

Here are some things I've thought of on how I can use my privilege. Let me know what you think.

1. Use your hearing privilege to call out audism. When you see a TV on in a public space, comment on how it would be nice if the captioning was on.

2. Use your economic privilege to support Deaf-owned businesses and organizations.

3. Use your hearing privilege to educate others when appropriate. The best scenario is that a Deaf person would be the one to educate.

4. Watch for jobs at your work place and recommend Deaf people for them. Cause HR to question if answering phones really is necessary for the job. Remind them that there are alternative forms of communication like texting.

5. Use Facebook to announce Deaf related information such as important laws being passed.

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