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September 12, 2005

CSD Offers Support To Deaf Hurricane Katrina Victims

From: CSD - Sep 12, 2005

Release Date: September 9, 2005

CSD Offers Support to Deaf Hurricane Katrina Victims

AUSTIN, Texas and TULSA, Okla. – 9 September 2005 – To ensure that deaf and hard of hearing victims of Hurricane Katrina are not overlooked in recovery efforts, CSD has made resources available to support emergency responders and volunteers of the Red Cross and other organizations working with the evacuees.

CSD of Oklahoma is one of four regional providers of the Community Emergency Preparedness Information Network for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Persons (CEPIN) Project. Providers are contracted by Telecommunications for the Deaf, Inc. (TDI) under a grant received through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Office for Domestic Preparedness. Texas – in addition to other states in the Midwest and Southwest regions – is served through CSD's Oklahoma office, as well.

"We are doing everything we can to respond to the requests for assistance that have poured into our office," said Glenna Cooper, CSD of Oklahoma division director. "Emergency responders are being provided with resources to assist deaf and hard of hearing people and refer them to appropriate resources in a timely manner."

In Texas, CSD has offered sign language and oral interpreting services to address accessibility and has also made video relay service workstations available.

"CSD's responsiveness will ease the anxiety of displaced victims as they arrive at an unfamiliar location," said Mark Seeger, CSD of Texas executive director. "Probably the biggest challenge we face at this point is locating deaf and hard of hearing individuals and determining the type of support services they need. CSD is depending on the deaf community and emergency response personnel to direct and refer victims."

"All of us at CSD are saddened by the devastation of this natural disaster," said Benjamin Soukup, CSD chief executive officer, "We encourage deaf and hard of hearing individuals and communities everywhere to join CSD in giving with their hearts and reaching out to the victims."

For information on making donations to assist with relief efforts and for continued updates on how CSD is responding to this crisis, go to CSD's web site ( or contact CSD of Oklahoma at (918) 835-7445 or CSD of Texas at (512) 428-1801 TTY and (512) 428-1800 Voice.

ABOUT CSD — CSD, Inc. (also known as Communication Service for the Deaf) is a private, nonprofit telecommunications and human services organization. In its 30-year history, CSD has expanded its communication service offerings and currently manages over 20 call centers in the U.S. CSD offers telecommunications relay services, video relay services, equipment distribution programs and sign language interpreting services, in addition to providing human services at 15 locations in eight states.

ABOUT THE CEPIN PROJECT- The U.S. Department of Homeland Security awarded TDI nearly $1.5 million for the two-year CEPIN Project, which focuses on developing model community education programs for deaf and hard of hearing consumers about emergency preparedness. The four homeland security regions are: CSD (Midwest and Southwest regions), DEAF, Inc. (New England and Great Lakes region), Northern Virginia Resource Center (mid-Atlantic and southeastern region), and DCARA (west coast and Hawaii). For more information about the CEPIN Project, please visit


Contact: David Rosenbaum
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