Graduate project

The TTY: a means of communication

This paper attempts to develop a rationale for the development of equal access to telephone communications for people who cannot use the present telephone system without specially adapted TTY equipment. The author has traced the development of various systems purported to answer the needs of deaf people in using the telephone. He points out the frustrations encountered by people who have used these systems and indicates actions which can be taken to alleviate the inequality of telephone service in the United States. the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the amendments to that Act form the legal basis for recommendations to improve telephone communications for people who can neither hear nor speak. The possibility of favorable interpretation of the Architectural Barriers Act of 1968 regarding equal access to telephone communications is presented through the eyes of a lawyer employed by the United States Government. Recommendations for further study of the responsibilities of telephone companies, tax supported agencies, and the media are made in the hopes that they will be pursued toward the goal of equal access to telephone communications for people who can neither hear nor speak.

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