Monthly Meetings: We meet monthly on the third Saturday at 10 am. Since COVID-19 began, all our meetings are virtual using Zoom. To be notified of every meeting, and get the Zoom link, please email us and ask to be on our newsletter email list.
Anyone affected by hearing loss is welcome, whether it’s your own or a family member’s or friend’s. You don’t need to join or pay any dues to participate in our meetings.
Who We Are Our Portland chapter is dedicated to providing a supportive atmosphere for you to meet other hard of hearing people and learn about issues related to hearing loss. We have monthly chapter meetings open to anyone interested in hearing loss. We are one of many local chapters of the Hearing Loss Association of America, HLAA.
New to Hearing Loss? If you’re just starting to learn about hearing loss, please check out hearingloss.org/, the website of our national organization, the Hearing Loss Association of America. There is so much useful information there; click on all the topics: Hearing Help, Support, Online Community, Events, Advocacy and Membership.
Newsletter We send out an email newsletter before each monthly meeting and occasionally send other messages. Please click on this link: Sign Up for Our Newsletter to be added. We welcome you!
If you'd like to get e-news messages from national HLAA, you can sign up by going to hearingloss.org and click on "E-NEWS SIGNUP". They send about two messages each week.
Membership Individual membership in the national Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) costs just $45.00/year. For information or to join, go to HLAA's home page, www.hearingloss.org. These dues support activities of the national organization in Rockville (Maryland) and entitle you to membership in the local and state organizations. HLAA’s very helpful quarterly magazine Hearing Life is sent to all HLAA members.
It is not necessary to be a member to attend Portland Chapter monthly meetings; everyone affected by hearing loss is welcome. We do welcome your donations directly to our chapter, HLAA – Portland, as well (tax deductible, 501-c-3), mailing address above!
Our Chapter Meetings
Our current meeting time is 10 am on the third Saturday of each month. Since COVID-19 began, we meet virtually, using the Zoom platform.
To confirm the day and time for a specific meeting, sign up for the newsletter using the link above or email us at email@example.com
Our monthly chapter meetings are real-time captioned (CART). When we meet in person, we use an induction loop amplication system (usable by wearers of hearing devices equipped with telecoils).
In response to feedback from the group, we are having open discussions at most meetings, rather than scheduling a professional to speak on a specific topic. So please come with your questions and concerns about anything to do with hearing loss, yours or a loved one’s. If you use any device or gadget to help cope, such as an assistive listening device, please bring it to show to others.
Our current Board Members President: Mark Foster Vice-President: vacant Treasurer: Sonia Reynolds Secretary: vacant Members at large: Judy Barnes, and Marv Lurie
Board membership is limited to seven people. All must be current members of HLAA, our national organization.
Newsletter Editor: Anne McLaughlin
2023 Convention: New Orleans, June 27-July 2, New Orleans Marriott
Heads Up! HLAA's next Annual Convention will be at the New Orleans Marriott in New Orleans, LA, June 29 - July 1, 2023. Workshops to be offered will include:
Over The Counter Hearing Devices – A Consumer Perspective
Workplace Accommodations for Accessible, Inclusive Employment
El Estigma en la Perdida Auditiva (The Stigma of Hearing Loss) HLAA’s First
Workshop in Spanish
How to Make Yourself Heard
Wireless Resources for All
Advancing the Narrative of Hearing Loss to Support the African American Community
Captions Conversation – The Global Alliance for Speech-To-Text Captioning. Possible
The HLAA convention is always a very welcoming event for people with any level of hearing loss. It gives attendees a chance to learn about coping techniques, new technology, develop leadership skills, and much more, to meet others who understand hearing loss, and – maybe best of all – to enjoy all this in an environment where everything possible is being done to assist your participation: live captioning, hearing loops, and speakers who pay attention to your hearing needs. Plus the virtual Exhibit Hall offers you a look at the newest technology: captioned phones, assistive listening devices, “shake and wake” alarm clocks, and much more.
Chapter President Mark Foster provides an explanation of Assistive Listening Devices (ALDs) as well as useful links for ALDs and using technology with hearing loss. Download It Get information on Oregon Communication Project (OR-CAP), an organization that works with hearing-impaired members to gain compliance with Oregon state and Federal disability law. OR-CAP’s past successes include open captioning at Portland Trail Blazer games at the Moda Center. Learn more about OR-CAP here
Flash, Shake & Wake: Portland Fire Dept. Offers Free Alarms for Portlanders with Hearing Disabilities
A Portland Fire and Rescue program provides free specialized alarms to Portlanders with hearing loss. These alarms utilize bed shakers and strobe lights to warn those who can’t hear audible alarms about imminent danger from either fire or carbon monoxide. The program is jointly funded by FEMA and the City of Portland.
Portland Fire and Rescue staff install the alarms and provide information on using them. For details and to submit an application, go to https://www.portlandoregon.gov/fire/68951. If you do not live within Portland city limits, check with your local fire department for a similar program.
Accessibility of Public Services
Talking back to your TV set
Do you have a complaint about the captioning on your TV? To make a complaint, first contact the local broadcast station or your cable or satellite provider. To get the station’s contact info for captioning issues, go to https://publicfiles.fcc.gov/ and enter the station's call sign, e.g., KATU or KPTV, or the zipcode for cable providers.
A Portland success: Captions on TVs in Public Places; How can we make this requirement truly effective?
In 2015, the Portland City Council voted unanimously to require that televisions in public places in Portland must display captioning. The requirement applies also at places where membership or an entrance fee is required, such as TVs at gyms.
The ordinance relies on us to help inform local businesses and get them into compliance. For help informing local businesses of the requirement and, if necessary, enforcing it, go tohttps://www.captionsonnow.net/
No-Cost Captioned Phones and Tablet Computers Available on Loan
The State of Oregon Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has three programs to assist Oregon residents with telephone communications.
The Oregon Lifeline reduces monthly telephone bills for Oregonians receiving qualifying benefits.
A relay service that allows a person with a hearing or speech disability to place and receive phone calls.
The PUC's third program is the Telecommunication Devices Access Program (TDAP), which loans adaptive telecommunication devices at no cost and with no income restrictions to eligible Oregonians. TDAP can provide only one device per person. Loaned assistive devices include captioned phones, amplified phones, and iPads.
Movie Lovers: There are many captioned movies in the Portland area
In the greater Portland area, there are at least 10 movie theaters where you can see movies with captions.
Several local independent theaters provide CaptiView caption decoders for many movies. They are Cinema 21 on NW 21st Avenue, the Center for an Untold Tomorrow ( formerly the NW Film Center) at the Portland Art Museum on downtown’s South Park Blocks, the Hollywood Theater on NE Sandy Blvd., and all the McMenamins theaters (Bagdad, Edgefield, St Johns Theater & Pub, Mission Theater, Kennedy School, Grand Lodge in Forest Grove, Old St Francis in Bend, Olympic Club in Centralia and Anderson School in Bothell WA).
All three Cinemark/Century theaters offer free caption CaptiView decoders for most movies. All Regal theaters offer Sony decoder glasses as well as occasional Open Captioned screenings.
At each theater, you just need to ask for a captioning device when you arrive at the theater. You may be asked to give a phone number or leave your driver's license as security. A Caveat: Because not all movies are distributed with captions encoded, be sure to check with the theater beforehand to make sure the movie you want to see is actually captioned. For Cinemark/Century only: go to the chain website or fandango, enter your zipcode, pick a venue from the resulting list, the "CC" icon indicates movies with captions. Fandango’s listings for some theaters do not include captioning info. For other theaters, contact the theater directly.
Cinemark/Century: Go to cinemark.com. Showtime listings indicate whether captioning is offered.
Cinema 21: Call the theater 503-223-4515, during open hours or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The theater website is at cinema21.com but doesn't give info on which movies might be captioned.
Hollywood Theater: Call the theater 503- 493-1128, or email info [at] hollywoodtheatre [dot] org. The theater website is at hollywoodtheatre.org/ but doesn't give info on which movies might be captioned.
For the national Regal chain venues, the website Fandango also indicates when/where captions are offered; type in your zip code for local showtimes and look for "Closed Caption" or “Open Caption” above each movie's list of show times.
When will more theaters offer and publicize captioned movies? That's probably up to you / each of us.
None of the venues that already have captioning devices does very much to publicize their devices or the movies that have captions. Please consider giving these theater managers polite and constructive feedback on the availability and use of these devices, and ask them to publicize their availability better. For the theaters that don't offer caption decoding devices, or open captioned screenings, please let them know you would love to patronize them but need captions. Most movies are now distributed with captions. Theater managers can choose to turn them on so everyone can see them ("open captioning") at selected screenings (a low-cost option), or they can purchase and provide viewers with caption decoders like the ones at Cinema 21, Hollywood, McMenamins and Cinemark/Century venues. But if no one ever asks them for captions, they're unlikely to take either step. So ask them.
We would appreciate hearing from anyone who knows about any other local venues that provide captions in any form (e.g., using devices like those used at the chains, or regularly scheduling and publicizing open-captioned screenings). Email us at email@example.com.
Captioning at Local Live Theater
Three local venues offer open-captioned performances of productions on their stages: Portland Center Stage, Artists' Repertory Theatre and Broadway In Portland. Each venue usually offers a single open captioned (OC) performance of most or all of their shows. Check their websites:
Artists Repertory Theatre: no info on website, contact: 503.241.1278 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
"Being a patient with a hearing loss does not have to be frightening but preparation is needed. It is important to contact the hospital as far in advance as possible to discuss and request aids or services that may be needed. Hospitals should have a designated person/office to whom such requests should be made and to whom patients can contact in the event the hospital fails to provide the requested accommodations.
"The following are recommended questions to ask your doctor and hospital prior to your stay, such as:
"Can your hearing aids/cochlear implant processors stay in/on during surgery or until you fall asleep?"
Our parent organization, the Hearing Loss Association of America, regularly offers one-hour webinars (interactive online seminars) on topics of interest to people dealing with hearing loss. They are first shown live, usually on Wednesday afternoons about once a month.
For future webinars, and recordings of past webinars, go to https://www.hearingloss.org/programs-events/webinars/schedule-recordings/ Webinars are recorded and can be watched later. If you're participating in a live webinar (not watching a recording later), you can usually send in questions for the speaker. All HLAA webinars are free and captioned. If you've never watched a webinar before, give it a try. It can be fun as well as informative.
Now you know WHO we are and WHERE to go, so come check us out! We'd love to meet you!
HLAA-OR Board in person meetings location
Until further notice all meetings are virtual by Zoom
Reimer Conference Room Bldg. Albany General Hospital 1085 6th Avenue SW Albany, OR 97321 Need Directions?
What Our Members Are Saying
"Hearing Loss Association of America gave me the ability to articulate without anger...now I know this is just life and I need to deal with it...one of the benefits of Hearing Loss Association of America is sharing information about the latest medical technology"