July 26, 2007
If Scott Simser wasn’t a movie buff before, he sure is one now.
Mr. Simser, who is deaf, was jubilant after a settlement was announced yesterday by the Ontario Human Rights Commission that will put captioning technology in more theatres across the province.
Major movie exhibitors – Alliance Atlantis, AMC Entertainment, Cineplex Entertainment and Rainbow Centre Cinemas – have agreed to offer captioning technology in 19 theatres across Ontario, resolving a complaint from Mr. Simser and two other hearing-impaired individuals who argued their rights were compromised by the shortage of accommodation for hearing-impaired people in Ontario cinemas.
“I am thrilled to have all us three complainants … secure an important human rights victory that assure that the deaf and hard of hearing enjoy entertainment along with all our families and friends,” Mr. Simser said.
Mr. Simser lodged his complaint with the commission following his frustration after a screening of the James Bond film The World is Not Enough in February, 2000.
He soon found kindred spirits in Gary Malkowski and Nancy Barker, who had also filed independent complaints, and they decided to fight together.
According to yesterday’s agreement, 19 theatre complexes across Ontario will have the captioning technology by the end of 2008, and it will be a required feature for every new cinema built between 2009 and 2013.
Friday, July 20, 2007
Gallaudet University has recently emerged from an ordeal. Robert Davila began his tenure as president in the aftermath of a schism that polarized many on campus. This divide arose from differing visions for Gallaudet today and in the future.
Mr. Davila’s challenge has been to unite all university stakeholders so that Gallaudet may begin to address the accreditation issues brought forth by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education [“Accrediting Agency Puts Gallaudet on Probation,” Metro, June 30].
The board is engaged and believes Gallaudet has made tremendous progress.
Gallaudet today is as organized and as focused as at any point in its history. Mr. Davila and his team are drawing on recommendations from students, the faculty and staff, and alumni to refine and enhance students’ educational experience at Gallaudet. Collaboration to sharpen Gallaudet’s advancement strategy is underway.
For many, Gallaudet is more than a university. It is a beacon of inspiration, of courage and of strength for deaf people around the world. It is imperative that the community ensure the survival of this beloved institution in the years to come.
BENJAMIN J. SOUKUP
Chairman, Board of Trustees