A Place of Healing: Deaf Prison

Take No Deaf Prisoners (Unfairly)

Judge Orders Relief for Deaf California Prisoners

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The Hidden Shadows of Stigma

What is stigma and why is it important to be educated about the term, ‘stigma’ that impacts the Deaf community today and tomorrow? Everybody is fighting his or her own personal battles that you know nothing about. Stigma is a huge part of mental health.

Deaf Returnees: Helping Them Through PTSD

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The adage that there is no perfect machine holds true from a Jack-in-the-Box to the criminal justice system. What can Deaf inmates and returnees broken by this system hope to achieve during June, which is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) awareness month?

Especially when this awareness reach extends deeply into the Deaf community to places needing empowerment, healing, and positive steps? What resolution can empower Deaf returnees to build learning, healthy and safe spaces?

Imagine the stories of Deaf inmates and Deaf returnees, their hearts shattering under the fiber of social rejection. Even while they are making a positive change to share their experiences to overcome the depression, they experience bullying, humiliation, and surmounting hardships; the toughest thing.

I believe that there are high and unreported PTSD cases by Deaf inmates and Deaf returnees that the social media needs to acknowledge. The sweeping impact of ignoring Deaf simply for who they are, and the lack of awareness, is not felt enough in the criminal justice system. Just like the marginalization of Deaf returnees in Deaf community, why are they being singled out?

While the United States has put more people in prison than any other country, it does not have resources to help Deaf returnees rebuild their lives once they are released. While there is a growing need, there is also a forgotten movement to end mass incarceration to reduce recidivism. Deaf returnees need inspiration and guidance.

Deaf returnees who are in search of rebuilding lives are at once faced with overcoming steep economic hardship, systematic privileges, unemployment, and lastly, PTSD. Changing the pattern across the country would help Deaf returnees successfully transition from inmate to returnee life on the outside.

The Second Chance Act of 2007, which is having a difficult time getting funding, would most likely hurt Deaf returnees in the long run. Why? So, Deaf returnees would be able to get help and learn how to develop healthy thinking patterns.

One bit of critical information here. Not empowering Deaf returnees enough can become frightfully expensive and mentally taxing. Empowering Deaf returnees would require intimate examination of the territory of their lives and not just a perception of its surface, incorporating new knowledge into other knowledge;

Empowering is a good investment, and the supporters’ efforts pay off. Empowering would gain intellectual and emotional agility and strength so needed in society.

-JT

Copyright © 2019 Jason Tozier

This text may be freely copied in its entirely only, including this copyright message.

Harming Deaf Community: Hate Crime Laws

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Hate Crime in Portland, Oregon is a serious issue. Portland has been a hot spot for hate crimes even though it is invisible just like that. Raised in greater Portland area for 37 years, and studied under world-class hate crime professor where he taught me how to be knowledge about prejudice, hate crimes and violent crimes. My work was and been focusing on Deaf people who were victimized by the hate crimes.

I was very much proud to play a crucial role in Oregon making sure Deaf people who were survivors or victims of hate crime are included in Oregon bias crime statute in 2011. It is one of my proudest life work ever. Thanks to Oregon Coalition Against Hate Crimes (OCAHC), I was grateful for its leadership.

Last August 2018, I attended a congressional teach-in on hate crimes and participated in the discussion where I asked the panel experts, including one who was my professor, a question that was critical enough for the society to see a sociological problem, for example, “Since the 1990s, when hate crimes began to be documented, there hasn’t been one documented incident against Deaf people, although they happen.” that can be found on C-SPAN website with closed captions. It was very important time to ask.

That inspired me to write a column called The Reality (and Invisibility) of Deaf-Targeted Hate Crimes in DEAF LIFE October 2018 issue and gave a lecture: Fighting the Fires of Hate: Deaf America in Crisis in the same month as well.

I got invited to be part of training how to combat hate crime sometime this year with well-known and well-respected organizations and hate crime experts which I am very excited and will bring my knowledge how to combat hate crimes against Deaf people. The biggest problem is that the laws lacks the most where they fail to protect Deaf people from hate crime are ultimately enforced by ignorance. Deaf people needs protection at all cost and stop the hearing privileges that the hate crime laws needs to be updated because for number one reason: Deaf people do not deserve hate.

Once the power is taken away from Deaf people, it makes Deaf people’s lives harder if it has not enforced in hate crime laws to protect them at all cost. Often misunderstood that the stigma about Deaf people are one of the greatest damage control. Hate crime laws should not criminalize Deaf people because of the stigma.

How do Deaf people ensure the public trust is enforced? There is no exit. Where is the sympathy for Deaf victims, survivors, and its families? The mainstream society inflicts harm, which, in turn, affects the Deaf community today and tomorrow.

Yet, Deaf people continue to suffer the cruel punishments because of their identity and practice the culture of fear in sound-oriented society. The violence needs to be stopped.

For lectures: please visit this website below.

https://jasontozier.net/

-JT

Copyright © 2019 Jason Tozier

This text may be freely copied in its entirely only, including this copyright message.