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  1. It’s Just a Cane

    My name is Ashley Broussard and I am an Orientation and Mobility (O&M) Specialist. I was first introduced to this field near the end of my undergraduate studies at California State University, Los Angeles when I was given an opportunity to observe an O&M lesson. That day at the Braille Institute changed my life forever. Most of the people I saw there were walking around using a long cane and I immediately felt like I was in a new world. It was so unfamiliar to me, and yet, so routine…

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  2. Walking the sidewalk

    I just have to share something that happened to me today that brought a tear to my eye, but also put a big smile on my face. I was leaving Best Buy on York Road in Towson waiting for the light to change when I noticed a young blind man with a stroller and his young daughter beside him waiting to cross the entrance-way to the parking lot. The car in front of me had pulled out too far, blocking their path from the sidewalk. I was about to gesture…

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  3. BlindWays, A Free Crowdsourcing App to Help Blind People Find the Bus Stop

    What is it? BlindWays is a new app for iPhone. If you’re blind and looking for a bus stop using GPS, you could easily be off target and miss your bus — because GPS is only accurate to within 30 feet. BlindWays gives people who are blind audible landmark clues they can identify with their cane, so they know they’ve reached a bus stop and not a ‘No parking’ sign. How does it work? VoiceOver software tells people who are blind what landmarks exist as they approach a bus stop. Not familiar with VoiceOver?…

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  4. When is it OK to offer help? One blind woman’s perspective

    Ever since the Blind New World campaign began, I have really become aware of how people’s perceptions of blindness appear in my everyday life.  Some are very obvious.  Comments like “You are amazing!”, “I don’t know how you do it.” and frequently “I’m sorry.”  These emphasize that people simply cannot imagine life without vision. Tonight I experienced another form of reaction to my visual impairment.  Getting onto the subway with my Seeing Eye dog, a woman kindly offered me another person’s seat.  I smiled and said “No thank you, I…

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  5. It’s not the end of the world

    “Hi sir,” I say to the Lyft driver as I pace a small distance to and from the bank.  “I’m calling to let you know that I’m blind so I won’t see when you arrive, but I’m standing outside of the Chase.” “What Chase?” he asks laughing.  “And blind?” “Where you’re picking me up?” I reply a little worried; this was only my second time using the app. Had I done something wrong? “It’s a bank.” “Oh,” he says.  “At 2219 Broadway?” “Yes,” I breathe a sigh of relief.  It’s…

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  6. Tales from a blind – and independent – traveler

    I think people assume we who are blind live near home, need constant assistance and are afraid to leave our places of comfort. In fact, out on the streets of Boston, I’ve been accosted several times with the inquiry, “Sir, do you know where you’re going?” I usually reply, “Yes, I’m walking to work. Do you know where you’re going?” Travel is an amazing privilege if one can afford the ticket and the time. I enjoy domestic travel as well as international travel when I’m able. I’ve been telling myself…

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