Office of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Deaf History month
American Sign Language - ASL Day - April 15, 1817 - 2019


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Communication Access

Communication Access

Trainings for Service Providers
To request a training:
Hearing Loss Awareness - A Common Problem for Older Adults

Communication Technology

Communication Technology


Community Outreach

Community Outreach


SLI Contracts & Resources

Sign Language Interpreter Contracts & Resources


Social & Human Services

Social and Human Services

Training & Presentations

Training and Presentation

Trainings for Community Members
To request a training:



Quick Links



Public Videophone
Available to Community Members
Outgoing Calls Only
9 am - 4 pm
Lobby Area
Blake West Building
4450 - 10th Ave
Lacey, WA  






For your information...

Hearing Aid Consumers

Please click on document to see this information on wireless technology and hearing aids
Hearing Aid Consumers informationHearing Aid Consumers information 2





Medicaid Coverage for Hearing Aids Starts January 1

Approved by the legislature last year, coverage of hearing aids for adults on Medicaid will begin January 1, 2019.  The coverage limited, as it only restores coverage that existed before 2011, but it will give eligible adults some hearing aid coverage, where they have none at present.  People with 45 db or more hearing loss in their better ears will be eligible for one hearing aid.  This will be bundled with the hearing evaluation, ear mold and three follow-up visits to the provider.  New hearing aids may be obtained every five years.  Two hearing aids may be approved under certain circumstances and requires prior approval.

Cochlear Implant replacement and repair will also be covered and new CIs may be covered with prior approval. Batteries for hearing aids and CIs are not covered.

The WA Health Care Authority (HCA) is still developing the regulations for this coverage but will operate under interim "emergency" regulations until the final rules have gone through the internal review, public comment and adoption processes.  HCA will have a comprehensive web site with information including

Frequently Asked Questions

Contact: Jean Gowen, PA-C, MPH
Clinical Program Manager - Hearing Hardware Program

Did you know?

April 15 is National ASL Day

deafeducation - twitter  #languagedeprivation #signlanguages

"As we celebrate this day (which is also the last day of the Deaf History Month which started on March 13), we must also remember two things: language deprivation is still happening right here with Deaf children in the USA every single day and 2) that ASL is not the only sign language used in this country-we have Lengua de Senas Mexicana (LSM), Japanese Sign Language, Cuban Sign Language, Plains Sign Language, Ukrainian Sign Language, and oh, so many more!!! Let us aim for full equity and inclusion of ALL sign languages and for all children. #happyASLday (psst, International Sign Language Day is in Sept - get ready!) #languagedeprivation #signlanguages (the National ASL Day image above is from @adventuresindeafed)"

Americans celebrate Gallaudet University's 155th anniversary during National Deaf History Month, March 13 - April 15.  Jack R. Gannon, a notable deaf author, historian, and museum curator once wrote the book called "The Week the World Heard Gallaudet."    

April 7 - 13 is the National Library Week 
Friends of Libraries for Deaf Action (FOLDA) honors Gallaudet University Library Deaf Collections and Archives for giving back to both deaf and library communities over years. 

April 9 is the National Library Workers Day 
FOLDA acknowledges Gallaudet University former library students of the late Lucille Pendell, Gallaudet Librarian, for giving back.  From Linda Bove, first Deaf librarian on TV to late Edith Kleberg, first NAD librarian, and to Suzanne Levesque, who still works for the same department of the DC Public Library since 1964!  55 years so far.  She acknowledged Gallaudet Library for what she is today for giving back.

NOTE. The library of the future. Deaf Culture Digital Library (DCDL) will benefit all library staff at Academic (i.e., Gallaudet, RIT/NTID) , School (i.e., deaf school), Public (i.e., Library of Congress)  and Special (i.e., museum, non-profits, business) for shared deaf resources and promoting deaf culture (e.g., heritage, family, education, sports, political, organizational, popular and other cultures).

If you have stories to tell about Gallaudet and your positive library experience, please share them with people in your local community. Anywhere in America!

Alice L. Hagemeyer
Book author
Honorary member of ALA and founding president of FOLDA-USA Section of the NAD (now called Deaf History and Culture Month Section) 

If you are interested to keep up with National Deaf History Month and Deaf Culture Digital Library, please join National Association of the Deaf(NAD), NAD Sections, State Deaf Associations, and/or other NAD Affiliates. We do not want to flood the State House of Representatives and the U.S. Congress with people clamoring for “rights and equity” without a wall backed and well prepared bill. 

For more information about the history of Deaf Culture Digital Library and National Deaf History Month, please contact us.

Alice L. Hagemeyer & Alec McFarlane

Interesting Reads of ASL and Deaf Culture

Hearing Loss Information

People with hearing loss who are oral and do not sign are often left out of the opportunity to socialize as their local community centers and senior centers are not “hearing friendly.” That is, they often lack the technology or fail to use even basic amplification of their programs where people who are hard of hearing might participate. There is one place where we know that people with hearing loss can be welcomed and know that their communication needs can be met. This would be a local HLAA chapter meeting.

If you are interested in starting a local HLAA chapter or hearing loss support group in your area please contact and share your ideas. We’d love to hear from you.