The deaf and hard of hearing community’s best possible defense against illness and disease is obtaining accurate information and a commitment to increasing health, knowledge and empowerment of the community.
Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program
Up to 1 million teens become pregnant every year; 3 out of 10 teens become pregnant before age 20; 50% of all children go to bed without a father and 80% of teen mothers do not marry the baby’s father.
GLAD’s program is geared to deaf and hard of hearing adolescents and young adults residing in Los Angeles County and its surrounding counties. Community Health Educators use a sign language approach to reduce teen pregnancy and unplanned pregnancies with a mission to educate young deaf and hard of hearing teenagers.
- Education/Prevention: Our 8-hour “Be Cool… Sign No (to Sex)” prevention program is designed for middle and high school students to make healthy choices. Topics include abstinence, structured decision making, refusal skills, birth control and sexually transmitted infections.
- Outreach: Teenagers receive at least 15-minute one-to-one private sessions with Community Health Educators covering FamilyPACT clinical services, confidentiality, referrals for mental health, domestic violence, and dental, drug & alcohol services. Medi-Cal eligibility/enrollment and communication access needs are included in the discussion.
- “For Males Only:” This rap discussion, for deaf and hard of hearing young males, takes place at adult schools and community-based organizations and is designed to encourage males to take responsibility in avoiding pregnancy, and if they are already parents, the role of the involved father. Discussion topics include providing emotional and financial support to their children, laws about statutory rape, and healthy communication and relationship skills.
- Career Day: Representatives from the Department of Vocational Rehabilitation, EDD, various adult/training schools and colleges come to share resources. Deaf professionals from various backgrounds are invited to share their job-related experiences and accomplishments.
- Advocacy Presentation: Selected students participate in this project by giving presentations to legislators or other elected officials to increase awareness of the causes, cost and impact of teen pregnancy and to increase community support for prevention programs.
- FamilyPACT Clinic Referrals: To reduce teenage pregnancies, deaf and hard of hearing teenagers are educated through our outreach and preventive programs related to sexual and reproductive health. Through the one-to-one sessions, group presentations and deaf events, the young people receive referrals for nearest clinics and learn how to request sign language interpreter services. Funded by California Department of Public Health, Office of Family Planning
Breast Cancer Research and Education
In an effort to design and implement educational programs that are specific to the needs of the deaf community, a partnership between GLAD and the UCLA Division of Cancer Prevention and Control Research/Johnson Comprehensive Cancer Center was established to conduct research on breast cancer prevention and awareness among deaf and hard of hearing individuals. Funded by The California Breast Cancer Research Program and Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
Health Care Access Coalition
A regional network of health care providers, language advocates and other stakeholders is working to develop a strategic plan to improve access to quality health care services for deaf and hard of hearing consumers in Los Angeles County. The Health Care Access Coalition is teaming up to create system change for better access to health care delivery focusing in five areas as follows:
- Health Care Providers: To assist health service providers to become knowledgeable and sensitive to deaf culture and make resources available to increase deaf and hard of hearing patients’ access to health care.
- Health Plans: to assist health plans and insurance companies with compliance with laws including SB853 and to provide technical support to maintain quality assurance between health plans, insurance and medical providers (for instance, who pays for interpreter services – doctors or insurance companies?).
- Deaf and Hard of Hearing Consumers: to educate deaf and hard of hearing consumers about their rights and responsibilities so they can access quality health care.
- Sign Language Interpreters: to provide professional medical-related training for sign language interpreters to be able to interpret fluently in medical settings.
- Legislative: to educate lawmakers about the need for sign language to be added to the SB853 bill so that medical providers and health plans will comply. Funded by The California Endowment.
- HIV Prevention Program: GLAD’s Health Program continues to provide services to deaf and of hearing women who engage in risky sexual behavior. Individual and group sessions include risk reduction counseling, negotiation skills, HIV testing and STD screening referrals, relationship issues and updated HIV/AIDS resources. Funded by U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention and the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health, Office of AIDS Programs and Policy
- HIV Interpreting Services: Free and confidential interpreting services are available to HIV+ deaf and hard of hearing individuals and their families. These services are provided for all HIV-related needs including testing, medical and mental health issues. Clients must be screened to be eligible for services. Funded by U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention and the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health, Office of AIDS Programs and Policy
Teen Zone Website
Teen Zone Website: This fun and interactive place for deaf and hard of hearing teens and young adults can be accessed here: TEEN ZONE