The New Jersey Council of the Blind’s mission is to strive for the betterment of the blind and visually impaired community. The purpose of this publication is to provide a forum for the free exchange of ideas, opinions and information that concern blind and visually impaired people.
We thank Audiovision, the Radio Reading Service of the New Jersey State Library Talking Book and Braille Center for the use of their recording studio to produce the cassette and digital formats that are aired on Audiovision and our website http://www.njcounciloftheblind.org. For more information about Audiovision call 1-800-792-8322 or visit their website at http://www.audiovision-nj.org. We thank John Hart of Audiovision and our webmaster, Dave Casterline for their contributions to the Chronicle. The NJCB Chronicle is also available on Newsline. The Chronicle is read by Bob Lucas. Four quarterly newsletters are sent to members free of charge in either large print, audio cassette or E-mail. You may obtain the current and back issues of the Chronicle and other information from our web site.
The New Jersey Council of the Blind (NJCB) is a 501 (c) 3 corporation. Tax deductible donations should be sent to the Treasurer of NJCB.
Articles to be included in the NJCB Chronicle, requests for copies of the newsletter or membership information should be sent to NJCB, 520 Ewingville Road, Ewing, NJ 08638. They may also be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or phoned to (609) 882-2446. All information must be received by June 1st to be included in the next issue of the Chronicle.
The NJCB officers are: President, Larry Morgan, 53 Pollman Ave., Hamilton, NJ 08619, (609) 588-5012; First Vice President Frank Schack (973) 595-0116; Second Vice President Joyce Sowa (732) 596-9675; Secretary Ottilie Lucas (609) 882-2446 and Treasurer Bob Lucas, 520 Ewingville Road, Ewing, NJ 08638, (609) 882-2446.
The next quarterly meeting of NJCB will be hosted by the members at large on April 26, 2014 at the Grace Lutheran Church at 600 New Brunswick Ave., Perth Amboy, NJ 08861. The cross street is Convery Blvd. Lunch will be served at noon for a cost of $5.00 and the general business meeting will begin at 1 PM. The day’s activities will be over at about 4 PM.
Call Joyce Sowa at (732) 596-9675 to ensure that the members at large will have sufficient refreshments for all attending.
Grace Lutheran Church
600 New Brunswick Ave.
Perth Amboy, NJ 08861
Cross Street: Convery Blvd.
Hello to all. According to the calendar, spring has arrived and not a minute too soon to suit me.
Let me bring you up to date on our activities. We have been busy thanks to some hard working members. The updated NJCB brochures are done and have been distributed in some areas. Already the NJCB scholarship applications are completed and are out there. Before the next meeting I will have a Nominating Committee in place.
I wish to thank the following people for the hard work they have done.
I also would like to thank me for attending and working on the NJCBVI Strategic Planning Committee. I have had the opportunity to work with and network with some of the best in their fields from eye doctors to teachers to counselors and many, many more. Our next order of business is getting our Fall Conference organized. We need help from everyone, so let’s do it.
Larry Morgan, President
iCanConnect/NJ provides communications technology for those with combined vision and hearing loss.
The iCanConnect/NJ program ensures that individuals who have a combined hearing and vision loss and who meet income criteria can access telephone, advanced communications, and information services. In New Jersey, the program is provided through a partnership between the New Jersey Commission for the Blind & Visually Impaired and the Center for Sensory & Complex Disabilities at The College of New Jersey. To learn more about eligibility requirements for iCanConnect and download an application, go to http://www.icanconnect.org/new-jersey or call 609-771-2711.
The NJCB Chronicle, The ACB Forum, Insights, New Jersey Talking Book and Braille Center’s Newsletter, and The Friends of The New Jersey Library for the Blind and Handicapped Newsletter as well as many others are now available on Newsline. You can access these Newsletters with a Newsline subscription and a touch-tone telephone. If you do not have a Newsline subscription, contact Reader Services at the New Jersey Talking Book and Braille Center at 1-800-792-8322 to get signed up for a Newsline subscription. If you have a Newsline subscription, but do not remember your login information, contact Christian Riehl at the above number extension 821. Once you have secured your login information, dial in to the service by calling 1-888-882-1629, or the local dial up number provided to you for accessing the service. Follow the prompts for logging in and reading the Newsletters. Choose option 2 off the main menu for your state’s information channel, followed by option 5 the New Jersey information channel, and then follow the prompts for the Newsletters. Happy Reading.
Vanda Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have approved HETLIOZ™ (tasimelteon) 20mg capsules for the treatment of Non-24-Hour Sleep-Wake Disorder (Non-24). HETLIOZ™ is the first FDA approved medication for Non-24.
Non-24 was first described more than 60 years ago, and is a chronic, circadian rhythm disorder resulting from the misalignment of the endogenous master body clock to the 24-hour day, disrupting the sleep-wake cycle. Non-24 affects the majority of totally blind individuals and it is estimated that approximately 80,000 Americans have the disorder.
“The FDA approval of HETLIOZ™ would not have been accomplished without the heroic efforts of blind patients and their advocates,” said Mihael H. Polymeropoulos, M.D., Vanda’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “We are committed to providing much needed support to patients with Non-24 and facilitating access to this new therapeutic option.”
We expect further information about Vanda’s plans in the next few days, but I wanted to let you know that this major hurdle has been overcome, since many of you, like me, have been waiting for this approval for some time.
It’s Tee Time for Talking Books! TBBC is excited to announce its 3rd Annual Golf Classic to be held on June 10th at the picturesque Old York Country Club in Chesterfield, NJ. If you know anyone interested in golfing, sponsoring, or volunteering, contact Linda Cerce in the Development Office at 800-792-8322 extension 835.
The American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) has announced the 2014 winners of the Migel Medals, the highest honor in the blindness field. One of the 2014 recipients is former ACB President and Executive Director Oral Miller. Prior to his serving the blind, Mr. Miller received his B.A. from Princeton University and his J.D. from University of Chicago Law School. He has been a good friend to NJCB and has been a keynote speaker at two of our previous conventions.
MCAB Chapter Report. Mercer County Association of the Blind has survived this cold and snowy winter and is looking forward to spring. We hosted the NJCB January quarterly meeting at which Daniel Frye, CBVI’s new Executive Director, presented his goals for CBVI to those in attendance. He is enthusiastic and has many positive ideas. He asked Larry Morgan, our Treasurer and President of NJCB, to serve on the Strategic Planning Committee. We will be celebrating Christmas on April 5th at Tessara’s Restaurant. A snow storm was predicted for December 14th so we postponed the dinner to a date which should not be snowy. We are all pleased that “Dusty’s Law” has passed in New Jersey. This law gives some real penalties to any person or any owner of a dog that interferes with guide dogs. We look forward to seeing you at future NJCB meetings and our summer picnic on August 2nd.
BCA Chapter Report. We have a very busy couple of months ahead of us. On Saturday, April 12th we will be holding our semi-annual Spaghetti Dinner fundraiser from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Takeout orders will be available. Reservations are preferred, but not required. For $10.00 you will receive a salad, spaghetti, meatballs, sausage, bread, dessert and a beverage (non-alcoholic). Please call the office at 732-291-0878 if you need more information. The Eatontown Lions 5K Race will be run on May 3rd. The 9th annual Gift Auction will be held on May 30th. This is our largest fundraiser of the year. Admission to the NJBCA Gift Auction is $20.00 per person. There will be a limit of 320 tickets sold. No one will be admitted without a ticket. Purchase price includes admission ticket and one sheet of auction tickets. Call Stacey at (732) 291-0878 to reserve your tickets. Proceeds from all these events go directly to NJBCA. Kudos to the ladies auxiliary for their tireless efforts in making all of these events work for the betterment of the blind.
Legislative Committee. ACB is behind two legislative initiatives that would benefit the blind not only in NJ, but throughout the country. The 1st is the Alice Cogswell and Anne Sullivan Macy Act (H.R.4040). Once enacted, this legislation would ensure that properly designed and individually tailored educational services are in fact provided for the unique needs of all students who are blind or visually impaired and deaf or hard of hearing, including students who may have additional disabilities. The 2nd is the Medicare Demonstration of Coverage for Low Vision Devices Act of 2013 (H.R.3749). This legislation would allow reimbursement for certain low vision devices that cost $500 or more as durable medical equipment. Thus far the only NJ cosponsor is Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D). There are no NJ cosponsors for H.R.4040. Please contact your Congressman and ask him/her to become a cosponsor of these vital legislative initiatives.
Saturday, April 26, 2014: NJCB quarterly meeting at The Grace Lutheran Church in Perth Amboy from Noon to about 4 PM. Check “Meeting Notice” for information and directions.
Tuesday, June 10, 2014: TBBC Golf Outing at the Old York Country Club in Chesterfield. See previous article for more details.
Saturday, July 26, 2014: NJCB quarterly meeting at Camp Happiness in Leonardo, NJ. More information will be in the July issue.
Saturday, August 2, 2014: Mercer County Association of the Blind’s annual picnic at the Trenton Elks. See July issue for details and directions.
Saturday, October 25, 2014: Biennial NJCB Conference at the Grace Lutheran Church in Perth Amboy. Check the July and October issues for more information.
NOTE: Disclaimer. The views and opinions expressed in this newsletter are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions and views of the New Jersey Council of the Blind officers and/or members. The editor reserves the right to edit articles submitted for both space and content.