Advocates and Legal Help
We sometimes find ourselves in the unenviable position of having to “fight city hall”. Of course, it may not really be city hall; trying to deal with any established bureaucracy can be a real exercise in frustration. Maybe your struggle is to get appropriate accommodations at work, to fight an insurance company over benefits, or to get an appropriate placement or IEP for your child.
In any of these situations, you are at a real disadvantage, because the organization you are battling made the rules, and you probably don’t know what the rules are. What you need is someone on your side who does know the rules and is willing to help you in your battle; what you need is an advocate.
If you’re in this situation, a good place to start your search might behttp://www.iser.com/CAadvocacy.html. It lists advocates from all over the United States. Their focus is special education advocacy. But if they can’t help you with your particular issue, I bet they can put you in touch with someone who can!
If an advocate doesn’t provide enough horsepower, you might consider an attorney. I recently stumbled on a website entitled “Legal Network for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing”. It has a list of attorneys from all over the country who work with deaf and hard of hearing people. If you need an attorney who has some experience with people with hearing loss, this might be a good place to start. Point your browser to http://www.legal-deafhh.org.
And finally, you might try looking up your city in our Local Hearing Loss Resource Directory. We just might have already identified a hearing loss advocate or lawyer in your area.