Did you know there are over 800,000 individuals who are Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing (HOH) in the United States? Those are a lot of voices to be heard, but many of us have no experience communicating with someone who communicates via ASL (American Sign Language) or lip reading. Imagine going into your local coffee shop, the gas station, the checkout line at the grocery store, a job interview or into your child’s school and realizing that no one can understand you, and you have a very limited understanding of what they’re trying to say. Chances are, you’d feel alone, ostracized, and perhaps a little uneasy or afraid. That’s why the team at Brooks Law Group is making an effort to overcome this issue in our own community with our free upcoming ASL class!
What is ASL, and why does it matter? ASL, American Sign Language, is a means of communicating using hand signals that signify different letters and words. This language provides the ability for those who are Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing, the ability to speak with others. Unfortunately, much like any other language, if the person you’re speaking to can’t understand you, your conversation won’t go very far. While there are plenty of online courses and YouTube videos explaining the basics of ASL, there’s no substitute for in-person instruction. Our class will be taught by an instructor who is fluent in sign language, and equipped to provide each student with a solid foundation in ASL and give them the tools needed to continue in their training of this language if they so choose.
Have you noticed a Deaf individual in your own community? Making even a small effort to better “hear” them will go a long way toward making them feel welcome! Try:
- learning some of the top “conversational” signs (hello is a great place to start!)
- maintaining eye contact when engaging with a Deaf or HOH individual
- using clear and normal lip movement when speaking for those who lip read to communicate
Brooks Law Group has a goal to make every individual feel valued, seen, and heard. Accidents don’t discriminate, and neither do we! We ensure that each client coming to us for help receives equal, quality representation and legal counsel. Your best interest is our top priority, regardless of ability, race, or identity. Following an accident or injury, we offer FREE, no-obligation consultations so you can make an informed decision. Call us to schedule yours! Interested in attending our ASL class? It will be every Monday night in April, from 5:30 – 6:15 at our Winter Haven office. Registering is easy! Simply email your name, preferred email address, and phone number to firstname.lastname@example.org. When it comes to community support, Look to Brooks!