The Connecticut Council of Organizations Serving the Deaf (CCOSD), Inc. was established on December 1, 1969 in West Hartford, and chartered under the laws of the State of Connecticut as a non-profit organization on April 6, 1971.
The CCOSD is the first state-level coalition-type organization of the deaf to be established in the United States. Although the national Council of Organizations Serving the Deaf became defunct in the mid-1970’s, the CCOSD has remained active since the inception.
The CCOSD has one major goal – to serve the deaf and hard of hearing residents of Connecticut through their local and autonomous member organizations of or for the Deaf.
As the CCOSD enters in its third decade, it maintains its responsibility to define and defend equal rights for the Deaf citizens of the state. It looks back on some important milestones:
- Initiated an Adult Basic Education for the Deaf in 1970
- Formed a Special Department of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) staff position in 1974
- Supported a coordination of the Services to Deaf DVR clients
- Advocated the passage of an Interpreter Law in June 1973
- Established the permanent State Commission on the Deaf and Hearing Impaired as signed into the law on May 31, 1974
- Established Deaf Senior Citizens in the Greater Hartford area in 1976
The Connecticut Council of Organizations Serving the Deaf, Inc. has a basic objective that is to promote and serve the best interests and welfare of all Deaf citizens of Connecticut. The CCOSD serves as a catalyst for cooperative efforts and actions of its member organizations.
The CCOSD affirms its commitment to the goals:
- Elimination of socio-economic barriers which deprive the Deaf citizens of the traditional American way to opportunity and advancement.
- Elimination of discriminatory practices which deny the Deaf citizens to rights to jobs, careers, and promotion.
- Protection of legal rights of the Deaf citizens through publicity about a Deaf person’s right to a qualified interpreter, as based in the Interpreter Law of 1973.
- Promotion of Adult Basic Education and Continuing Education Programs for the Deaf residents as avenues to personal self-enrichments.
- Provision for liaison between the State Commission on the Deaf and Hearing Impaired, and other state and national organizations serving the Deaf, so as to better identify and understand the problems of Deaf people.
- Provision for sharing and exchanging information about deafness and the needs of Deaf people.
- Dissemination of general information about deafness and its problems to the public at large, state agencies, and others.
- Coordination of services, assistance and expertise to our member organizations.