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Why Join TDI?

TDI (formally known as Telecommunications for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Inc.) is a consumer based and consumer focused organization whose mission is to “provide leadership in achieving equal access to telecommunications, media, and information technologies for deaf and hard of hearing people.” TDI is recognized by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as the primary advocate for telecommunications access for people with hearing loss.

TDI speaks for all sectors of the deaf and hard of hearing population, and that includes people who are deaf, culturally Deaf, oral deaf, late-deafened, and deaf-blind. Our hard of hearing constituency includes both hearing aid users and people with cochlear implants. In effect, the constituency that we serve is all people with hearing loss, regardless of their preferred communication method, regardless of whether that loss was present at birth or developed at a later time, regardless of whether that hearing loss is mitigated by some form of assistive listening technology (such as a hearing aid or a cochlear implant), and regardless of whether or not that loss is accompanied by one or more other disabilities (such as blindness). TDI works for access for everyone with hearing loss!

We are in the business of “shaping an accessible world,” and in this era of ever expanding talking technologies that is central and absolutely vital for the familial, economic, and societal well being of deaf and hard of hearing people.  

Consider becoming a member of TDI if you or any of your family or friends have a hearing loss, and you want to support an organization that is dedicated to making this world a better place in which people with hearing loss can live.

TDI, like most non-profit organizations, is continually in a battle for economic survival. The income that it receives from membership dues amounts to only a fraction, but a significant and irreplaceable portion, of the moneys necessary to pursue its mission. Its revenue streams are never certain, but membership dues are the most consistent portion of its income.

According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), “approximately 17 percent (36 million) of American adults report some degree of hearing loss” source. That’s about one out of every five people in the United States! This large number of people with hearing loss is critically important because of the way that we presently live. Our primary entertainment venue is television. Cell phones and pagers are everywhere, allowing us to keep in touch with others almost anytime and anywhere. We rent our movies at the local video store and watch them in the privacy of our own home (with our PJs and slippers on). We seldom really write a letter, preferring rather to use e-mail, instant messaging (IM) or short message service (SMS) on our cell phone. We avoid going to the mall, preferring to do our shopping on the Web and have our purchases delivered to our door. Because of employment and transportation mobility, families are scattered from one end of the country to the other, and family members keep in touch mostly by phone. Today, competing in the global economy requires constant and heavy use of telecommunications technology. So access to that technology is of vital importance to employers, employees and the economic health of our nation. In essence, our lives revolve around technology!

But doing the things that ensure access to that technology for persons with hearing loss takes people, commitment, and money. And TDI has been promoting accessible technology for the past 40 years with few people, big committed hearts, and not much money. So, please resolve to support TDI, and help ensure continued access to telecommunications, media and information technology for deaf and hard of hearing people, so they too can fully enjoy living in the technology based world of today.

TDI Member Benefits

TDI members enjoy the following benefits:

  • The strongest voice in Washington, DC advocating for the rights of deaf and hard of hearing people to accessible telecommunications, media, and information technology
  • Annual TDI National Directory and Resource Guide (The Blue Book)
  • Your contact information listed in The Blue Book  (optional)
  • Quarterly TDI World Magazine
  • Discounted registration to the Biennial TDI Conferences
  • Discounted products from the TDI store
  • The inner satisfaction that comes from knowing that you are supporting an extremely important and worthy cause and helping to “shape an accessible world

 

Every member counts as there is strength in numbers!