State of California California Department of Consumer Affairs


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The Americans with Disabilities Act requires common carriers offering telephone services to the general public to increase the availability of interstate and intrastate telecommunication relay services to individuals with hearing and speech impairments.

All common carriers of telephone services must offer non-voice relay services that interface with voice services.

The letters "TDD" stand for Telecommunications Devices for the Deaf. MCM refers to any portable device that gives "soft copy".

TTY means teletypewriter. The first telecommunication devices were actually Western Union teletypewriters (TTYs) with phone couplers. Now it is a generic term used by deaf people to refer to telecommunication devices in general. As a device, the advantage of a TTY is that it offers "hard copy" and can be filed for later use (which means the person does not have to constantly watch the display as the message is typed out). The disadvantage is that TTYs are generally not portable.

The Federal Communications Commission enforces ADA Compliance for Telecommunications assistance for the deaf.

Federal Communications Commission
Public Information Service
445 12th Street, SW
Washington, DC 20554
(888) 225-5322
(202) 418-2555 (TT/TDD)

The Department of Rehabilitation offers technical assistance and services for the deaf and hard of hearing. Informs businesses and agencies about requirements for the deaf and hard of hearing.

Department of Rehabilitation
2000 Evergreen Street
Sacramento, CA 95815
(916) 263-8674 (ADA specific)
(916) 263-8672 (TTY)
(916) 263-8671 (fax)

Telecom for the Deaf publishes an International Telephone Directory of the Deaf for individuals who want to communicate with others who are deaf. Telecom for the Deaf
814 Thayer Avenue
Silver Spring, MD 20910
(301) 585-3324 (TT/TTY)
<p>The US Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Disabilities Rights Section enforces the law for deaf citizens.

US Department of Justice
Civil Rights Division
Disabilities Rights Section
PO Box 66738
Washington, DC 20035-6738
(800) 514-0301
(800) 514-0383 (TT/TDD)
(202) 307-1197
(202) 307-1198 fax

The Department of Fair Employment and Housing handles employment and housing discrimination.

Department of Fair
Employment and Housing
(800) 884-1684 (employment)
(800) 233-3212 (housing)

The California School for the Deaf is a public school for deaf students preschool through high school. Dormitories are available for students who do not live at home.

California School for the Deaf
3044 Horace Street
Riverside, CA 92506
(909) 782-6500
(909) 782-6509

Publications available: None are offered by the Consumer Information Center

See also: None

Other referrals: Disabled and Discrimination

Consumer Resource & Referral Guide Consumer Resource & Referral Guide
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