[nfbwatlk] FW: braille article

Mike Freeman k7uij at panix.com
Fri Aug 12 22:09:10 CDT 2011


-----Original Message-----
From: wcb-l-bounces at wcbinfo.org [mailto:wcb-l-bounces at wcbinfo.org] On Behalf
Of Denise Colley
Sent: Friday, August 12, 2011 2:47 PM
To: wcb list
Subject: [Wcb-l] braille article

Here is an article Dean Stenehjem sent to the WSSB Board.  I am posting it
in the body of this email.

Denise


Braille Team Recognized by Washington State School of the Blind By Rowlanda
Cawthon, East Team Leader, Communications



An offender at Washington Corrections Center for Women transcribes material
to Braille. The Braille Team at the prison was recently recognized by the
Washington State School of the Blind.

Braille programs are growing in prisons across the country. They have been
developed to address the national shortage of Braille materials for the
blind, and to provide educational and job training opportunities to
offenders. The Braille Team at the Washington Correction Center for Women
(WCCW) was recently recognized for their commitment and accomplishments in
this effort.

WCCW is the only prison in the state that provides professional Braille
transcription services. The program, which was established nearly 15 years
ago, opens the door for offenders to gain marketable skills in transcribing
textbooks, conference materials, newsletters, bills, voter's pamphlets,
religious materials and other documents.

Correctional Industries Manager Roy Pidcock said the offender workers
understand the importance of the work and are dedicated to providing quality
literature to the visually impaired.

"The offenders see value in the Braille program and are committed to the
work," Pidcock said. "Every offender in the program is certified. They work
long days and spend many of their evenings studying several subjects to gain
the necessary knowledge to do the job."

Offenders are hired based on a screening process and evaluation of computer
knowledge, academics and behavior. They must pass the Washington's Braille
Literacy Usage Exam and Library of Congress Literary Certification. There
are also several other certification opportunities that they can pursue to
further enhance their skills.

It's the dedication and hard work of the women that resulted in the Braille
program receiving 2010-2011 Team of the Year Award from the Washington State
School of the Blind said Human Resource Manager Jessica Sydnor who works for
the school.

"There are so many reasons why this group deserves the award," Sydnor said. 
"The pride that these ladies have in their work is humbling. Each and every
member of the team truly cares about the quality of their work. They
demonstrate the highest level of professionalism and genuine respect for
each other and the population they serve."

Most people will never have interaction with the Braille products developed
by the offenders. It's the recipients of the services who experience the
benefits and have the greatest understanding of the importance of the work. 
Braille transcription customers include government, non-profit agencies,
businesses, schools, hospitals, churches and other community organizations.

"It's easy for us to forget that these women are part of our agency," Sydnor
said. "I had the privilege to visit the program for the first time this
year, and it's difficult to describe how inspiring it was to see the women
in action.  We owe recognition to these women and this award is one of the
few ways we can show our gratitude for a job well done."

 


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