York Area Council of the Blind and ForSight Vision Partnered for White Cane Day
On October 15, 2014, staff of ForSight Vision assisted members of the York Area Council of the Blind to celebrate White Cane Day. The Council members went to York College and worked with students to demonstrate independent travel skills using a white cane.
In 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson first proclaimed October 15th as “White Cane Safety Day.” The original purpose was a safety reminder to promote courtesy and special consideration to blind people who are navigating America’s streets and roadways. Since this first observance, White Cane Day has taken on greater meaning as a time to celebrate the self-sufficiency of people who are blind or visually impaired and their right to participate fully in society.
Pennsylvania’s White Cane Law states: “The driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to any totally or partially blind pedestrian carrying a clearly visible white cane or accompanied by a guide dog and shall take such precautions as may be necessary to avoid injuring or endangering the pedestrian and, if necessary, shall stop the vehicle in order to prevent injury or danger to the pedestrian.”
The York Dispatch was on hand for the event... click here for photos.
On August 25, 2014, U.S. Rep. Scott Perry toured ForSight Vision to learn about programs available to the vision impaired.
The Congressman was informed of the vision aids available to those with limited sight, as well as support programs, technology, and employment at ForSight Vision.
The emphasis of the visit was the capabilities of the vision impaired, not their disabilities. Bill Rhinesmith, President of ForSight Vision, conducted the tour.
Perry visited the shop area where visually impaired employees are working on a major project for the Library of Congress – the recycling of Talking Book shipping containers and the reformatting of the digital cartridges.
Thanks to Congressman Scott Perry for taking a tour of ForSight Vision.
We had nice media coverage for the event, as follows:
Many thanks to the York Daily Record for the May 15 article about the Amblyopia Support Group we’ve started here at ForSight Vision. If you don't know much about amblyopia, this article will help as it uses print and video featuring one of our young participants, 3-year-old Tate Messinger.
The program is led by Danielle Crull, a Master Certified Optician. Danielle is assisted by Leora Wiest, our Prevention of Blindness Specialist and Danielle’s daughter Jax, a Certified Optician. We are thrilled that we now have this group to help children with amblyopia and their families. While we have been providing free preschool vision screenings in York County for over thirty years, we never had the resources to provide this service. Our partnership with Danielle and her optical business, A Child’s Eyes, now gives us that expertise.
Eye glasses for children 3 months to pre-teens are now available at A Child’s Eyes, a new optical shop inside ForSight Vision, 1380 Spahn Avenue in York.
The mother-daughter team of Pediatric Master Certified Optician Danielle D. Crull and Certified Optician Jax A. Crull operate the shop in office space provided by ForSight Vision. The walls of the shop are lined with samples of eye glasses frames, from the very smallest to fit a seven-month-old to those that would appeal to older children.
Danielle Crull is the only optician specializing solely in children’s glasses in the area. Talking about fitting an infant for eye glasses for a vision problem, she said “the earlier it is corrected, the better it is.” Many of the clients she works with are children with amblyopia, often called “lazy eye.”
A patch is placed over the lens of the “good eye” to force the brain to re-focus the eye with the vision deficiency. To explain the reason for the patch over the lens, Danielle has written a book for children, parents, and teachers entitled, “Apple Patty Patches.”
Bill Rhinesmith, President of ForSight Vision, notes: “We do pre-school vision screenings here. When we determine a child has amblyopia or other vision problems, we refer them to a vision professional. With Danielle here, we can now reach out to parents to counsel and educate them on how to effectively deal with their child’s vision problem.
Appointments for Tuesdays and Thursdays can be made by calling Danielle Crull at A Child’s Eyes, (717) 422-3035.
Mayor C. Kim Bracey of York issued a Proclamation declaring October 15, 2013, to be White Cane Day.
ForSight Vision joined the Mayor downtown on the square to pass out information about the White Cane Law which provides blind or vision impaired individuals using either a white cane or a service dog the right-of-way in traffic.
York's White Cane Day is part of a series of events throughout the state by the Pennsylvania Association for the Blind in celebration of Blindness Awareness month (October, 2013).
A Bit of White Cane History
Did you know that we have lions clubs across the nation to thank for the existence of the white cane? In fact, the first white cane initiative came out of the Peoria, Illinois Lions Club in 1930 after which the concept spread throughout the U.S. and even abroad.
Joining the Mayor in the picture (from left to right) are Rodger Simmons, President of the York Area Council of the Blind, Mayor Bracey and Tony Heath, Access Technology Specialist at ForSight Vision.