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
“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
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 (www.c-s-d.org) 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