“New Amsterdam” Adds Sandra Mae Frank, Deaf Actress, as a Doctor

Sandra Frank, light skinned in blue dress with dirty blond hair

New York, August 19 – Deaf actress Sandra Mae Frank has joined NBC’s “New Amsterdam” as Dr. Elizabeth Wilder.

It is important to note that Frank is being added as a doctor, as many medical shows feature disabled actors as patients, but not as people who are helping others. Actors Rachel Handler, who is an amputee, and Matthew Jeffers, who is a little person, previously have been cast in roles as medical professionals. New Amsterdam overwhelmingly has been an example of best practices since Season 1, through casting authentically, including Lauren Ridloff and Eileen Grubba; working with consultants to ensure accurate storylines; and including conversations about diverse topics within the disability community.

Frank is a trained stage and film actor. Ever since she made her mark in Deaf West’s “Spring Awakening” on Broadway, she has been doing various projects from music videos, theater productions, films, and TV. She is also the production manager of Deaf Austin Theatre, a nonprofit theater company in Austin, Texas. Most recently Frank was featured on NBC’s Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist, performing a song in ASL.

Read the rest at https://www.respectability.org/2021/08/new-amsterdam-sandra-mae-frank.

Important Notice – Bylaws Suspension

Requesting our current Delaware Association of the Deaf Bylaws to be suspended due to covid and low recent turn out.  The reason for this is to resolve our election obligations and Bylaws will be restored once elections end.  This also applies to a motion made in June to have an in person election which we tried to do on September 9, 2021 but only 2 outside people (non-board members) came.  The deadline to object is Tuesday, September 28, 2021.  Contact delawaredeaf at gmail com or use the contact us link (at top of page in menu). 

Once we resolve this emergency issue, we will schedule a zoom meeting for our election instead. 


Reminder: History Book Festival presents The Invention of Miracles by Katie Booth with Feta Fernsler, DAD President discussing the book (Sept. 23, 2021, 5pm)

More information and registration at https://delawarelibraries.libcal.com/event/8155484 or https://www.historybookfestival.org/author-events.  It will be in ASL, closed captioning available discussing people around Alexander Graham Bell in a historical/factual perspective based on Katie’s 15 year research on the topic.  Questions are welcome.

History Book Festival presents The Invention of Miracles by Katie Booth with Feta Fernsler from Delaware Association of the Deaf talking about the book on Thursday, Sept 23, 2021 at 5pm via Zoom. Register for the event at bit.ly/HBF-BOOTH or the link in post here.


New Visor Card rolled out (Sept. 14, 2021)

front side of new visor card titled 'I am Deaf or Hard of Hearing' along with some communication tips below it for the police and icons to indicate communication preferences. back side of visor card with various icons for common automobile issues including violations, help issues, type of ticket, etc.

DOVER — It’s less wordy and communicates through more images.

Best of all, the redesigned visor communication card just might save a life.

A host of project partners attended a rollout ceremony in front of the Dover Police Department early Tuesday afternoon to extol the benefits of holding the card.

The automobile visor cards are designed to allow better communication between law enforcement officers and those who are deaf or hard of hearing during a vehicle stop.

Through an interpreter, Delaware Association of the Deaf President Feta Fernsler signed that, “I noticed that the old visor card used a lot of English.

“It was very wordy, so in the event of a traffic stop, law enforcement doesn’t really have time to sit and read a novel.

“Also, the driver may not be fully fluent in English, which is very common given that (American Sign Language) is their primary language.

“I wanted to make sure that the communication between law enforcement and deaf and hard of hearing drivers was as efficient and safe as possible.”

As to the redesign, Mr. Fernsler explained that, “We switched to the icons to represent what they would need to communicate most often to help reduce the stress level on both parts.

Read the rest of the article at (from Delaware State News) – https://baytobaynews.com/stories/updated-visor-card-facilitates-communication-between-delaware-police-and-deaf-or-hard-of-hearing,58454.

Pictures of the event can be found at https://www.delawaredeaf.org/about-us/pics/nggallery/dad-pics/visor-card-sept-14-2021.

News announcement prior to event – https://www.coastalpoint.com/news/state/new-communication-cards-designed-to-help-law-enforcement-deaf-hard-of-hearing/article_6a9ec894-14f1-11ec-b2bd-f3bc2af270d4.html.


** To request the new visor cards, contact Loretta Sarro at Delaware Office for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing or file an application which is listed at https://labor.delaware.gov/divisions/dvr/dodhh.  Deaf Outreach and DAD may have some in stock for use at events. **


Reminder: DAD Meeting update (September 9, 2021)

Food update below….

DAD Biannual meeting and elections details finalized!

Date: September 9, 2021, 11p-4p

Where: American Legion Pavilion, 113 American Legion Rd, Lewes, DE 19958

What: Biannual meeting and elections for new officers.  Any bylaw changes will be discussed then also provided we get changes NOW as bylaws state we must send out changes before the meeting.  Activities will be provided and we encourage you to bring things to do too (i.e. bean bag toss). 

Confirmed: food and drinks distributed  (Feel free to bring appetizers or something.  We plan on Capsulla’s subs and water.)


Covid notice: Please follow CDC or state Covid guidelines during the meeting.  We will be meeting outside as meeting inside is not possible due to covid restrictions.  That means masks if social distancing is not possible to respect everyone’s health.  Covid vaccinations are strongly recommended to reduce complications. 


Disney+ movies and SignUp in ASL

ASL Captions for Disney+ Movies just launched via the Google Chrome Extension “SignUp”. This extension allows the user to have on-screen ASL signing alongside children’s movies on Disney+!!!

SignUp enables the viewer to switch on a movie and, simultaneously, a small pop-up window will appear with an interpreter signing in ASL!!! The movies that are currently available, with more to come, are: Moana, The Incredibles, Zootopia, and Despicable Me.

You can access the extension at: http://www.signupcaptions.com/

Screenshot below from Maine Hands and Voices