The Increase in the Annual Federal Appropriations for 2019 Will Mean Expanded Services to Individuals Who Are Deaf-Blind.
Online PR News – 12-October-2018 – Sands Point/NY – Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths & Adults (HKNC), a division of Helen Keller Services (HKS), has expressed its deep appreciation to Congressman Thomas Suozzi [D-NY3] for securing a one million dollar increase in annual appropriations for 2019 — a dramatic 31 percent increase in funding for HKNC when combined with the year before.
"From day one, Tom Suozzi has been our biggest supporter," observed HKNC Executive Director Susan Ruzenski. "He has always worked and advocated on our behalf. We were the first place he visited after his election to congress and he has delivered on every promise, before or since. Congressman Suozzi is the best champion we have and we are eternally grateful to him for his consistent, considerable support of HKNC."
Established in 1967 as an Act of Congress, HKNC is the only national comprehensive program working exclusively with youth and adults with a combined vision and hearing loss. Prior to Congressman Suozzi's first term in office, federal funding for HKNC had remained unchanged for 16 years, with the exception of one year.
HKS President and CEO Joseph Bruno remarked, "Congressman Suozzi's extraordinary role in championing the need for expanded HKNC services benefits deaf-blind individuals, their families, and service providers here on Long Island and across the United States. Everyone at Helen Keller Services joins me in thanking him for his steadfast commitment to our mission."
The strategic initiatives already set in motion with last year's increase of $2.14 million will be fortified with the additional funding secured by Congressman Suozzi, mandated to create greater access to local resources and employment opportunities. "We are confident that without Congressman Suozzi's remarkable effort to obtain bi-partisan support," concluded Ruzenski, "HKNC would not have realized such incredible success in obtaining this funding."
Headquartered in Sands Point, New York, with ten regional offices across the United States, HKNC provides comprehensive vocational and independent living training to youths and adults who are deaf-blind. It offers support and learning opportunities to professionals and family members, and maintains a National Registry of Persons who are Deaf-Blind. The Center partners with other agencies across the United States to build their capacity to work with individuals who are deaf-blind. For more information, visit www.helenkeller.org/hknc.