Convincing Government Agencies of your disability
Posted by adbryan on 7/23/2012 at 7:35 PM
I have Stargardts and it has come to the point where filling out applications and trying to access servies for the visually impaired is almost more frustrating than the vision problem is itself.
I know that many of the procedures are there to make sure you have what you say you have. But I have not found a way yet to make this process smoother or easier to go through. From ACt, then to GRE accommodations, and on, it has not been easy to get through the applications or any other hoops they make you jump through to have accommodations. Why is it so hard, or so involved, to prove you need help?
Does anyone else have such headaches?
There is currently 1 reply
Re: Convincing Government Agencies of your disabilityPosted by neva78 on 9/10/2012 at 11:34 AM
It can be very frustrating, especially when you are beginning the process with many new organizations at once. Unfortunately, none of them share info. That protects you, but also makes you work harder. One thing I would suggest is keeping an original of a recent eye doctors report that clearly states your vision disability. It needs to show cause, visual acuity with best correction and if there is any visual field loss. These three pieces of data will help the organization determine your eligibility for their services or for accommodations. The next thing you need to know is what accommodation(s) do you need for the given situation. For example, on the ACT, do you need large print, extra time, screen enlargement or reading for the computer, etc.. Your doctor, especially if it is a low vision specialist, can spell these accommodation needs out in a letter that you keep and only give copies of to anyone who needs them. Being organized about your paperwork and keeping originals is extremely important and can be challenging. Use a file folder system that works well with your vision. Marking the folders with large print or graille lables, using colored folders like red for important papers, marking the date with a highlighter or post it and keeping it current, and being persistent with organizations in a polite way about arranging your accommodations. Last of all, starting early to make your requests is usually less frustrating because you have time to get them all the documentation they want and time to call back and follow up on a regular basis.
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