Hi everyone,

I’m sending this email out because we need your help to push the Assembly Chairperson of the Transportation to bring the Truck Driver Bill off the committee.  It seems they forgot the bill that the deaf community been fighting for the last 5 years.  The message is below with a link to our capwiz.  All you need to do is to fill out the form and send the message.  Please forward this to your national organizations or friends and family members in New York state.  We need all help you can to show that driving an 18 wheeler truck is about skills not hearing…


Bill A09309 is Stuck in the Transportation CommitteeTell Transportation Chair Gantt to Allow Deaf and Hard of Hearing Truck Drivers in NYS
To this day, Deaf and hard of hearing people struggle to get CDL Licenses, even with the many technological advances in today’s commercial trucks that current, hearing drivers already take advantage of.

Deaf people already face many barriers in getting commercial drivers licenses even if they meet the requirements with their hearing aids.  But we have an opportunity to correct this.

In 2008, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) released a report that found no evidence that hearing loss of commercial truck drivers effected safety.  With that, many hearing truck drivers have reported that due to the noise of their trucks, they cannot hear anything outside anyway.  Yet there is still a State Law that insists that hearing levels be tested in order to obtain Class A and B licenses.


In 2010, the New York State Senate passed a bill to give a permanent waiver to deaf and hard of hearing drivers of this hearing requirement.  If this bill becomes law, it would reduce the problems Deaf and hard of hearing people have in getting their commercial drivers licenses.  The bill is currently stuck in the Transportation Committee of the State Assembly.

We need your help to get A09309 out of committee and onto the floor of the Assembly.  If  it’s not passed this legislative year, we have to start all over again next year.

Send an e-mail to Assemblyman David Gantt, the Chair of the Transportation Committee asking him to move this bill to the floor, then forward this Action Alert to friends and family members to help deaf people get their commercial licenses, because driving is about skills not hearing.

Thank you,Dean DeRusso
Deaf Systems Advocate
Regional Center for Independent Living (RCIL)

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