by Lynne Smith, ASU Student
Soon to be re-opening along the light rail is the American Sign Language Center. This establishment has been closed and under construction since May 2010 and is due to open again this summer 2011. This facility has been designed for def seniors who wish to leave their lives of lonely living and isolation for a habitat amongst other users of American Sign Language. For people whose first language is American Sign Language there is now no longer a reason to be left out of a conversation or to be living in a world where people find it difficult to understand you. The center offers the comforts of safety and security for the elderly. Living in a home like this is ideal for people with this difficulty as it caters specifically to their needs and offers comfort and security.
This complex holds 75 apartment units designed for the deaf and the deaf and blind. The amenities include flashing light signalers for the phone and doorbells; videophone equipped lobby as well as videophones in each apartment. The ASL center looks out for the thorough care of their clients with light fixtures and windows designed to minimize glare, high contrast interior finishes and amplification systems for hearing aids.
All management staff members use American Sign Language to communicate to their clients and American Sign Language is incorporated into the centers culture amongst client activities and social events. This helps break down any barriers clients may have when communicating with others and ensures a relaxed, safe and happy environment.
Development of this apartment complex began in 2006 however due to the credit crisis at the beginning of 2009 it has prevented the completion of construction due to financial difficulties. Now with the help of Federal stimulus money distributed by the Arizona Department of Housing the renovations are near completion.
For more information on the center see http://www.apacheasltrails.com/news.html