Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Text of King 5 Item about Lt. Gov Habib and the WA Senate's new Roll Call System

For National #Braille Literacy Month, RantWoman plans to collect several news items about the new Braille Roll call system developed through a partnership between the WA Department of Services for the Blind and the WA state senate.

RantWoman apologizes for bibliographic sloppiness and lack of a direct link to the King5 site. Readers please use your search engines if you really need the link.

The text of the story
The state is implementing a new braille system to accomodate incoming lieutenant governor Cyrus Habib. (Photo: KING)

OLYMPIA, Wash. - The state is implementing a new braille system in the Senate to accommodate incoming lieutenant governor, Cyrus Habib, who is blind.

The Lieutenant Governor of the State of Washington has a very important responsibility in the State Senate; he or she controls the debate and calls on senators to speak or introduce bills.

That role has always been oral. When a senator wishes to speak, he or she stands up and asks for the floor. However, there was an unusual challenge facing the Senate with Habib.

To prepare for his position, he worked with staffers to install a brand new braille system.

Each senator now has a control panel at his or her desk that triggers his or her name to be displayed in braille at the podium.

"It was a very unique situation," said Paul Campos, deputy secretary of the senate, who explained the system took seven months to install and cost $70,000.

Habib tested the system Thursday, and staffers reported it worked very well.

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