Posts Tagged ‘Social Security Administration’

Pocono woman wins fight: Social Security to stop sending printed letters to blind

By Beth Brelje © Pocono Record, Pennsylvania — The Social Security Administration lost a four-year court battle this week, based in part on a Pocono woman’s testimony. Social Security will now be required to provide accessible communications to 3 million blind and visually impaired benefit recipients and represented payees. Printed letters sent to blind people will not cut it anymore. “It’s a victory,” said Mary Ann Alexander, president of the Monroe County Council of the Blind. “This decision brings us closer to accessing what we need to be independent. We’re whittling away at this chasm that separates blind people from sighted people; it’s a smaller divide now.” Alexander testified in federal court in San Francisco as part of the national class-action lawsuit brought by the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund on behalf of the American Council of the Blind and individual plaintiffs…. READ ARTICLE

Social Security told to modernize for the blind

By Bob Egelko © San Francisco Chronicle — The Social Security Administration must give the nation’s 3 million blind or visually impaired recipients the option of receiving benefit notices in braille or by audio computer disc, a federal judge in San Francisco said Tuesday. Ruling in a nationwide class-action suit, U.S. District Judge William Alsup said that by sending notices only by mail and phone calls, the agency is violating a law that guarantees the disabled equal access to its programs. He ordered the government to make the additional choices available by April 15. The case involves some of the 100 million notices the Social Security Administration sends each year to its 61 million beneficiaries, advising them of scheduled appointments, program changes, tax filings and possible benefit cuts. About 250,000 Americans receive benefits because of blindness, and another 2.7 million blind or sight-impaired people get Social Security for other reasons…. READ ARTICLE

National Federation of the Blind and Blind Social Security Beneficiary File Complaint with Social Security Administration

The National Federation of the Blind … and Margot Downey, a blind Social Security beneficiary from Buffalo, New York, filed an administrative complaint today with the Social Security Administration (SSA). The complaint asserts that the SSA’s Web site violates Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act because it is inaccessible to blind people who use text-to-speech screen access technology or Braille displays to access information on the Internet…. READ PRESS RELEASE