Advocacy

Knowing your rights is the first step in being the best advocate for yourself! As an advocacy organization, the National Federation of the Blind and the National Federation of the Blind of Virginia stay at the forefront of legislative and policy issues of interest to you.

State Priorities

Find your Virginia Delegate and Senator.

From Nijat Worley, NFB of Virginia General Assembly Legislative Director:

The National Federation of the Blind of Virginia is a powerful force advocating for blind Virginians. Please join us for the Richmond Seminar on January 20-21, 2020 to ensure our voice is heard in the offices of the General Assembly.

If you have never attended a Richmond Seminar, we strongly encourage you to attend and participate in representative democracy in action. Everyone is assigned to a team with an experienced leader. The General Assembly members and their staff are very receptive and welcoming. They know we are organized, articulate, and well versed in the subject matter.

We will put everyone on the team to work, sharing our issues and answering the questions of legislators and their staff.

The issues we will bring to Richmond are still under consideration but will most likely include:

  • Expanding resources for the Virginia Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired;
  • Special Hiring Authority for Virginia State Government jobs; and
  • Web Accessibility standards.

The final list of issues will be presented at the board meeting on Monday, January 20. We have bills being drafted that will need co-sponsors. Chapter Presidents should make contact with their General Assembly members in their local offices before the end of the year. If you need assistance in identifying them, contact Tracy Soforenko.

A meeting with our elected legislators in their home districts will go a long way in establishing the recognition that is needed for our visit to Richmond. All Chapter members are encouraged to participate. If you intend on doing a meeting or need help setting one up, please contact Nijat Worley or Tracy Soforenko.

Our board meeting is scheduled for 1:00 PM Monday afternoon, January 20, which is Martin Luther King Day. lunch will be available at the cafeteria on the premises. The Board Meeting will be held on the DBVI Campus on Azalea Avenue in Richmond.

Our General Assembly visits will be Tuesday, January 21. The affiliate will reimburse transportation expenses and hotel expenses.

Chapter presidents should arrange cost effective transportation for their chapter members. Individuals are expected to share hotel rooms and must obtain hotel reservations themselves at the NFB of Virginia rate. If you need assistance identifying a room share, please contact Joe Orozco via email: jsorozco@gmail.com.

Hotel rooms are available at the Delta Hotel.) The complete contact information is:

Delta Hotels by Marriott Richmond Downtown
555 East Canal Street
Richmond, VA 23219

The group rate is $139 plus applicable taxes. You may begin making reservations at any time by booking it online, or calling the reservations line at 844-781-7397and referencing the National Federation of the Blind of Virginia. Please note reservations must be made no later than Friday, January 3, 2020.

If you run into any problems with making reservations or need assistance at the hotel, please call our Operations Coordinator, Joe Orozco: 202-810-4023.

Chapter presidents must provide an initial list of the names of the individuals planning to attend from their chapter to Nijat Worley by Sunday, January 5, 2020 and additional names as they are known so we can establish and update teams in advance.

Finally, if anyone in your chapter is interested in being a team leader, have them reach out to Nijat Worley directly. If you have any questions, please contact Nijat Worley at 720-219-9517, or nijatnfbv@gmail.com.

Federal Priorities

The 2019 Legislative Agenda includes:

  • Access Technology Affordability Act (ATAA)
  • Greater Accessibility and Independence through Nonvisual Access Technology Act (GAIN)
  • Disability Employment Act (DEA)
  • Transformation to Competitive Employment Act (TCE)

Learn more about these issues.

Use the Senate and House pages to locate your Senators and Representative. Or, you can call the US Capitol switchboard at: 202-224-3121.

Use the form below to track the latest activity on the congressional bill of most interest to you: