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Amid all these perks, hearing help is absent
Theater owners have missed or are ignoring a huge segment of the potential movie-going population: those with hearing challenges (“The lap of luxury for moviegoers,” June 21). I would love to go to a theater, enjoy exorbitantly overpriced popcorn and have a true movie experience, but hearing loss makes that impossible. Here’s what it looks like: The intrigue and action draw you in. The actors move face to face and utter the lines on which the entire plot hangs, and as they speak those stunning words, they drop their voices for emphasis, the background music swells and they say “mosd fpoisdnf ekgoi dsne foigje!”
The boomer generation is aging and our health issues are multiplying. Sadly, hearing is a sense that is often less and less accessible to many of us. Many of us have the wealth and time to enjoy entertainment, but the entertainment industry ignores us. Even top-of-the-line hearing aids and the occasional headsets are not enough to overcome severe-to-profound hearing loss. But other technology exists; why not use it?
Several years ago, I researched shows with accommodations for the hearing challenged. I discovered that such accommodations applied to only one midafternoon show, one day a week, and not for the movie I wanted to see. So I’ll rent or stream the show of my choice, queue up the closed-captioning function, make my own snacks and stay home.
Laurie Brandt, Savage
YMCA SWIMMING LESSONS
Accommodations must apply to sign language
American Sign Language (ASL) is a recognized language here in the United States and at colleges and universities (“Lawsuit over interpreter asks: What’s ‘reasonable’ for the Y?”, June 20, and Readers Write, June 21). My question is: Where is equal access? Why does the Y have a right to not abide by the Americans with Disability Act?
All forms and signs are now printed in English, Spanish and Hmong. Why is this different for someone who uses ASL? This is not a matter of who this family is, who they married or their children. It is the law, and they are entitled to the same benefits of the Y as any other family who would attend there. They are not asking for the moon; they are asking to be treated like any other family taking their child to the Y for swimming lessons.
It is called dignity and respect.
Sara Lundquist, Benson, Minn.
Employers could help prevent ‘inside jobs’
It was upsetting to read “7 indicted as a fraud ring that stole $1M” (June 19). Hiring practices come with little assurance that our personal information will never be compromised. It’s quite scary, especially when considering ordinary employees have access to extraordinary data. Whether it is a temporary worker in the call center at MNsure, a teller at the bank, a receptionist at the doctor’s office or a government worker seeking eligibility for a client, we are all vulnerable. Due diligence is required when vetting these employees so “inside jobs” are few and far between. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. Background checks, personality tests and job history should be used to determine security clearance. For victims of fraud and identity theft, the deleterious ramifications are severe and life-damaging. Employers take heed!
SHARON E. CARLSON, Andover
The Opinion section is produced by the Editorial Department to foster discussion about key issues. The Editorial Board represents the institutional voice of the Star Tribune and operates independently of the newsroom.