The NFB- National Federation of The Blind is the oldest and largest organisation of blind people in the USA, boasting over 50,000 active members with affiliates in all 50 states plus the district of Columbia and Puerto Rico. A powerful advocative voice on behalf of the Blind and the visually impaired in the USA, anyone, blind or sighted, is permitted to join the NFB. However, a majority of members in its local chapters, state affiliates, and nationwide divisions must be blind, this also applies to its officers and board members at every level with exception of the National Organization of Parents of Blind Children.
Their recent 2017 Annual Convention brought together over 2,600 members, delegates, exhibitors and speakers to the Rosen Shingle Creek Hotel and Convention Centre, Orlando. The event strongly focused on raising expectations and opportunities within the US blind community, especially amongst the wider community, whether it be in education, strongly promoting literacy via braille, employment, legal challenges or supporting greater accessibility. With strong political and business links, The NFB is known for its ability to be heard and to be “in the corner” for every one of its members.
Speakers included Congresswoman Val Demings (10th District, Florida), Congressman David Young (3rd District, Iowa) and Jenny Lay-Flurrie, Chief Accessibility Officer for Microsoft.
Over the six days the event boasted a huge range of breakout sessions covering numerous subjects/workshops including the future of assistive AI technologies, an NFB Job Fair, Expo Hall, NOPBC- National Organisation of Parents of Blind Children, sports and recreational events, Educational, Legislative and many terrific social events!
Conspexit was represented at the event. Conspexit is currently prototyping and designing an application that will personally assist people with a visual impairment to gain greater independent mobility, but we’ve also taken on another challenge; raising awareness around sight loss and promoting organisations working every day to improve the lives of the visually impaired.
It was immensely informative to have a member of our team attend this event and to meet so many fantastic people.
Here is the 2017 Presidential Report delivered by the NFB President, Marc Riccobono
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