Minutes of

Meeting on the Braille Authority September 18, 1976 Burlington Hotel, Washington, DC


American Association of Workers for the Blind Harold G. Roberts American Council of the Blind Durward McDaniel American Foundation for the Blind Loyal E. Apple American Printing House f/t Blind Dr. Carson Nolan Association for Computing Machinery Robert A. J. Gildea Association for Education of the Visually

Handicapped Mary K. Bauman Canadian National Institute for the Blind E. G. Brown Clovernook Home and School f/t Blind Martin F. Droege Library of Congress Kurt Cylke

Richard Evensen

National Braille Association Mrs. Bonnie Richman National Federation of the Blind Dr. Kenneth Jernigan

Mrs. Anderson (Mr. Terry Small, New Zealand Foundation for the Blind attended as an observer)

The meeting was called to order at 9:15 A. M. and the participants were welcomed by

Mr. Roberts who expressed his appreciation to the participants for their interest. He explained that although the Canadian Council of the Blind and the Blinded Veterans Association were unable to be represented, they indicated their interest.

Mr. Roberts then gave a brief background statement describing the developments, which led to the decision of the current three sponsoring organizations, namely AAWB, AEVH and NBA, authorizing a restructuring of the current Braille Authority and an enlargement of the number of sponsoring groups. The following points were stressed.

A. The proposed change was initiated by the Braille Authority and its National Advisory Council, which established an Ad Hoc Committee to study the existing structure and method of financing.

B. The three sponsoring agencies have formally. accepted the basic recommendations of the ad hoc committee because they believe they could lead, if accepted, to a strengthening of the mechanism for the development of new braille codes and the adoption of changes in existing codes which would result from increased financing and greater responsiveness to the needs of braille producers and readers.

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The structure proposed by the ad hoc committee was modified by the current sponsors in order to achieve greater administrative efficiency.

The participants then engaged in a lively discussion, which resulted in clarification of the following points:

a) The terms of office of the current members of the National Advisory Council and the Braille Authority have been extended by the three sponsoring Associations until such time as the proposed new structure is legally established.

b) There are no conditions to the resolution adopted by the three sponsoring associations inviting increased sponsorship of the Braille Authority. Each new sponsor will be entitled to designate one representative to serve on the proposed Braille Authority of North America and each sponsor will have one vote.

c) Although the current three sponsors have jointly proposed a revised structure, the new Braille Authority of North America will be completely free to alter this proposal in any way they deem necessary.

d) With respect to future financing, the existing plan in which each sponsoring organization provides $500 per annum will be continued until such time as the new Braille Authority authorizes a change in light of future budgetary needs. (Since the current sponsors have made their annual payment for calendar 1976, the next payment will be due on January 1, 1977.)

The representatives of the following organizations indicated their willingness to become sponsors of the new Braille Authority of North America: American Association of Workers for the Blind, American Foundation for the Blind, American Printing House for the Blind, Association for Education of the Visually Handicapped, Clovernook Home and School for the Blind, U. S. Library of Congress, National Braille Association, and the National Federation of the Blind.

The following representatives indicated their need to consult with their respective organizations before making a formal commitment: American Council of the Blind, Association for Computing Machinery, and the Canadian National Institute for the Blind.

A deadline of November 15, 1976 was agreed to for providing Mr. Roberts with a written acceptance of the invitation to become sponsors of the Braille Authority of North America (BANA).

It was further agreed that an organizing meeting of BANA will be held on Thursday, December 2, 1976 in Chicago, Illinois. Mrs. Richman and Dr. Jernigan will cooperate in soliciting the most advantageous hotel in which to meet, either in downtown Chicago or at the airport depending on costs and availability of a meeting room.

Page 3 After this selection is made, Mr. Roberts, who agreed to continue as temporary chairman, will

send out a formal notice of the meeting together with a tentative agenda.

After the participants were warmly thanked for their interest and cooperation, the meeting was adjourned at 11:45 A. M.

Respectfully submitted,

Harold G. Roberts