house resolution no.129

Rep. Koleszar offered the following resolution:

A resolution to declare September 2023 as Deaf Awareness Month in the state of Michigan.

Whereas, As the deaf population includes a wide range of individuals, from those who were born profoundly deaf and use American Sign Language (ASL) as a primary means of communication to those with a degree of hearing loss who use hearing aids or other forms of amplification and communication modes; and

Whereas, According to the Michigan Division on Deaf, DeafBlind, Blind, and Hard of Hearing, at least 7.4 percent of the Michigan population identify as deaf, deafblind, or hard of hearing; and

Whereas, Michigan benefits from the many contributions of deaf, deafblind, and hard of hearing residents throughout the state; and

Whereas, Michigan is enriched by the diverse and unique heritage, language, and culture of the deaf community; and

Whereas, People who identify themselves as deaf belong to a cultural and linguistic community with shared language, social norms, rules of behavior, and history; and

Whereas, It is important to ensure that Michiganís deaf, deafblind, or hard of hearing individuals have equal access to the many benefits and opportunities available to hearing individuals to live, work, play, and communicate in Michigan; and

Whereas, To commemorate the first congress of the World Federation of the Deaf, which was held in September of 1951, the State of Michigan recognizes the entire month of September as Deaf Awareness Month; and

Whereas, The purpose of Deaf Awareness Month is to increase public awareness of the issues and the culture of people who are deaf, as well as to promote equal access to information and services for deaf individuals, to educate the public about the misconceptions of being deaf, and to learn about the types of educational programs, support services, and resources available to people who are deaf, deafblind, or hard of hearing; now, therefore, be it

Resolved by the House of Representatives, That the members of this legislative body declare September 2023 as Deaf Awareness Month in the state of Michigan.