Update from 3rd Meeting for March

Last night meeting at Woodhaven church served a constant reminder of the issues that many deaf/hoh face after a long sought settlement between the Department of Justice and the City of Houston. The truth is the City of Houston has continued to fail in the requirement that has been outlined in the settlement when it comes to meeting the needs of the deaf and hard of hearing individuals. That was one of the main reason to have the March, to bring awareness to the city council of Houston. Brian and Kathy and the other co-founders hope to bring that awareness to the City of Houston and ensure that the requirements are met in the 1998 settlement.

There were about 40 people at the meeting, and some were able to watch the meeting online. Some were there to prepare for the March and others were there to question the integrity of the March and the co-founder’s preparedness. In the meeting, there were more questions than answers and many felt uneasiness in the way the March has been planned. From our observations, we could see many of the audience members did not receive a satisfied answer and was more puzzled than before. However, the March Founders was adamant to go on with the March regardless and mentioned that Brian will be having a meeting with the ADA Coordinator, Robby Laws on the issue of the settlement agreement.

Some has expressed concerns on facts and evidence that could be presented to the City Council in regards to our situation.  Others has expressed that this issue is really a two way street, not just necessarily the City of Houston failure to meet our needs but because we had no one to really follow up with the City of Houston.

So as a result, many of those in the audience had the renew call for an establishment of an organization. An organization that will meet the needs for everyone in the deaf/hoh community. We ask for those to continue to participate and bring more awareness/voice in the establishment for a organization. Please keep an eye on the update on DPHHH.com for information.  Remember this is not about you, but about the deaf/hoh community as whole.  Updates will be coming soon about upcoming meetings in regards to the deaf/hoh community.

About Billy Koch

Billy Koch, a deaf professional who works in the IT industry, currently works for The Methodist Hospital System for MITIE as a IT Project Coordinator. Billy has over 15 years of IT experience behind him. Billy is the son of a deaf parents, and has a deaf brother as well. He grew up in a mainstream program with no deaf education program. He was first exposed to the deaf culture when he attended Gallaudet University for his Bachelors from 91-96. Billy has a MBA from West Texas A&M, and is currently the Executive Director of Greater Houston Deaf Connections, a non-profit organizations that focuses on education, advocacy, and support for deaf and hard of hearing people. He is an aspiring guy who wants to also educate the community of what they can do and what they can achieve.

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