Oregon State Bar Bulletin — NOVEMBER 2008

Clearing the Misconceptions
On behalf of the Disability Services Advisory Council, I would like to thank you for following up on our request for publication of an article addressing the rights of people with disabilities. The article "You Are Us" (February/March 2008) is a good reminder to Oregon attorneys of their responsibilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

However, there remain some misconceptions. For example, with all due respect to the gentleman who made the comment, whether an attorney should have an interpreter present when communicating with a deaf client should not be based on the length of the meeting alone; consideration must be given to the client’s level of comfort with communicating in English. American Sign Language (ASL) is not English. As a result, some deaf people who communicate using ASL have very low reading comprehension skills. A written note may be as unhelpful to them as it would be to a Spanish speaker from Mexico who has limited English language abilities.

The Disability Services Advisory Council strives not only to promote awareness of the problems faced by Oregonians who have disabilities, but to seek solutions as well. We would be happy to assist the Oregon State Bar with future articles that address these problems. We would also be willing to participate in the organization and presentation of continuing legal education programs.

Jack Oliver, chair
Disability Services Advisory Council, Central Point, Ore.

We Love Letters
The Bulletin welcomes letters. In general, letters should pertain to recent articles, columns or other letters and should be limited to 250 words. Other things to keep in mind:

Letters must be addressed directly "To the editor." No reprints of letters addressed to other publications, to other individuals, to whom it may concern, etc., will be considered for publication.

Preference will be given to letters in response to either letters to the editor, articles or columns recently published in the Bulletin.

Letters must be signed. No unsigned or anonymous letters will be printed. The executive director may waive this requirement, if such waiver is requested.

Letters from Oregon State Bar members receive top priority for publication in the next available issue. When responses occur over several issues, the editor reserves the right to cease printing letters on the subject in question.Letters may not promote individual products, services or political candidates. All letters must comply with the guidelines of Keller v. State Bar of California in that they must be germane to the purpose of regulating the legal profession or improving the quality of the legal services available to the people of Oregon.

Letters to the editor may be edited for grammatical errors, style or length, or in cases where language or information is deemed unsuitable or inappropriate for publication. Profane or obscene language will not be accepted.

The Bulletin will not publish letters containing language constituting an attack upon an individual, group or organization.

The Bulletin strives to print as many letters as possible. Therefore, brevity is important, and preference will be given to letters that are 250 words or less. The editor reserves the right to select or withhold letters for publication, and to edit any and all letters chosen for publication. The authors of rejected letters will be notified in writing by the editor.

Send letters to: Editor, OSB Bulletin, P.O. Box 231935, Tigard, OR 97281

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