Bill Clinton photo

Remarks by Telephone Relay With Glenn Anderson of Gallaudet University

July 27, 1994

The President. Dr. Anderson? Good morning. I want to begin by congratulating you on your appointment as the Chair of the Gallaudet University Board of Trustees. I also want to thank you for your great career in rehabilitation work, and your earlier help to me when I served as Governor.

I'm glad we can use this telephone network today because I know what an important link it is to millions of Americans.

Go ahead.

Dr. Anderson. Good morning, Mr. President. Thank you very much for your kind words. I am very pleased to have this opportunity to speak with you this morning. Thank you for agreeing to make this relay call. Also, I want to take this opportunity to thank you for your appearance at the Gallaudet University commencement last May. You inspired deaf people all over the country by your appearance and your wonderful commencement address.

Go ahead.

The President. Well, the honor was mine. I was very inspired by the students and their dreams. I also want to say how very proud I am of the strong support we have been receiving from the deaf and disabled communities on health care reform.

Go ahead.

Dr. Anderson. Great. Yes, we very much care about improving health care services, and we are so glad that you have taken the lead in advocating for health care reform.

Hopefully, you will also be able to remind health care providers of how important it is that they be sensitive to the needs of people with disabilities for health care services and for access to reasonable accommodations. I am very inspired by your hard work and will do all I can to support your efforts.

The President. Well, of course, I will be sensitive to those things. And I think you well understand that the only way we can extend those benefits and opportunities to the disabled community is to cover all Americans. If we do that, we will be able to contain costs and empower disabled Americans to work and to live to the fullest of their abilities.

Let me say, also, before we close this conversation, how pleased I am that the ADA is working and giving us things like this telephone relay system. It's a great tribute to the work that millions of disabled Americans have done.

I want to make a special note of the work that your wife, Karen, has done and the help she gave to our campaign in 1992 and our efforts to reach out for all Americans.

Go ahead.

Dr. Anderson. Great. My wife is here with me, and she's grinning from ear to ear. She enjoyed the opportunity to serve you and work in your campaign.

I also want to say, yes, the ADA is working very well. And it will work even better in the years to come. Our conversation this morning is a living example of how well ADA is working.

Go ahead.

The President. I want to thank you again for all you have done to make the ADA work for people in their everyday lives.

It's been a real pleasure to talk with you today. One of my aides told me that your son, Jamal, and I have a picture together that you would like me to autograph. I'd be glad to do that, and I look forward to seeing you again soon.

Signing off.

Dr. Anderson. Great. Many, many thanks for this opportunity. Thank you, again, and you have a great day, too.


The President. Goodbye.

NOTE: The President spoke at 10:26 a.m. from the Oval Office at the White House. The telephone conversation used a new relay service technology which allows deaf persons to communicate by telephone.

William J. Clinton, Remarks by Telephone Relay With Glenn Anderson of Gallaudet University Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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