Civil Rights

Guide to Civil Rights in Massachusetts
Guide from the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office on residents' civil rights, including disability, housing, education, and related resources and publications. See also: Filing a Civil Rights Complaint

Regulations Affecting Deaf and Hard of Hearing Persons
List of laws and regulations, including the Americans with Disabilities Act, Interpreter Law, Children's Hearing Aid Bill, use of sign language in schools,  disability-related tax credits, and more.


Deaf Self-Advocacy Project
Curriculum provided by the National Consortium of Interpreter Education Centers aimed at teaching Deaf people to advocate for effective interpreting services. See also: The Case for Deaf Self-Advocacy Training

Disability Law Center
Legal advocacy on disability issues that promote the fundamental rights of all people with disabilities to participate fully and equally in the social and economic life of Massachusetts.

Disability Policy Consortium
Disability rights activists whose mission is to advance the rights of persons with disabilities throughout Massachusetts by organizing support for inclusive policies and system changes.

Massachusetts State Association of the Deaf (MSAD)
Advocacy for Deaf and Hard of Hearing people in Massachusetts through information, community activism, and social activities. Links to Facebook page.

National Association of the Deaf (NAD)
The nation''s primary civil rights organization of, by, and for Deaf and Hard of Hearing people, to preserve, protect, and promote the civil, human, and linguistic rights of Deaf and Hard of Hearing people in the United States.

Government & Public Services

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) ASL Consumer Support Line
Consumers who wish to receive assistance in ASL for filing informal complaints or for consumer information may contact the FCC's ASL Consumer Support Line at 844-4-FCC-ASL (844-432-2275).

Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Information in ASL
Collection of ASL videos about taxes, tax preparation, and other topics relevant to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

Massachusetts Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (MCDHH)
Established in 1985 to serve in the interests of deaf and hard of hearing of people of all ages living in Massachusetts. See also: MCDHH Resource Directory

Massachusetts Office on Disability (MOD)
Advocacy and services to people with disabilities in Massachusetts to ensure equal access.

Public health insurance program for residents of Massachusetts. See also: Introduction to One Care in American Sign Language and Overview of MassHealth in ASL

A service provided by the Disability Policy Consortium, myOmbudsman serves MassHealth members and their families who are enrolled in specific health plans and addresses questions or concerns about their benefits and rights as a MassHealth member. For assistance, contact the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Ombudsman at 339-224-6831 (VP.) The Deaf & Hard of Hearing Ombudsman works closely with the MassHealth Disability Accommodations Ombudsman.

MassHealth Disability Accommodations Ombudsman
MassHealth's Disability Accommodations Ombudsman provides support to MassHealth members who have a disability and require accommodations or have disability-related concerns that were not resolved via other MassHealth channels. Email: Phone: 339-224-6831 (VP.)

Mass 2-1-1
An online resource for Massachusetts residents seeking information such as disaster/emergency information, and services, such as childcare, veterans' services, and public assistance programs.

Small Business Administration ASL Customer Support Line
SBA's ASL Video Customer Support Line is available for Deaf and Hard of Hearing customers who wish to communicate directly with the SBA over videophone. 1-855-440-4960

Social Security & Medicare

Social Security, SSI, and Medicare - Information in ASL
Informational video in ASL explaining the benefits offered under the Retirement, Disability, Survivors, Medicare and Supplemental Security Income programs. Subtitled. 13 minutes.

American Sign Language and Deaf Culture

ASL Classes

DEAF, Inc.
ASL and Fingerspelling classes offered midweek evenings at the Allston (Boston) office.

The Learning Center for the Deaf
ASL classes offered midweek evenings at the Framingham campus.

Selecting a Sign Language Class
Information and resources related to learning ASL and selecting a class, provided by MCDHH.

Deaf Community and Culture

Collection of vlogs and blogs by Deaf people.

Collection of videos, films, shows conducted in ASL by Deaf people all around the world.

D-PAN (Deaf Performing Arts Network)
Non-profit organization that produces ASL music videos and ASL-related video content, including DTV News, an ASL-accessible source of national news featuring anchors who are Deaf.

Yahoo! Groups listserv with over 2,500 Deaf community members; good for keeping informed about community events and news.

Communication Access, Interpreters, and Assistive Technology

Assistive Technology

Assistive Technologies and Hearing Ear Dogs
Information from MCDHH about assistive technology products and programs, and hearing ear dogs for individuals with deafness or hearing loss.

Ins and Outs of Assistive Technology and Communication Access Options
Information from DEAF, Inc. about assistive technology options for Deaf, DeafBlind, Hard of Hearing, and Late-Deafened people.

Communication Access/Interpreting Services

MCDHH Statewide Interpreting and CART Referral Service
Information about interpreting services, interpreter screening and certification, Communication Access Realtime Translation (CART) services and CART Provider trainings, consultations, technical assistance and more.

See also:
Emergency or After-Hours Interpreter Requests
Request Interpreting or CART Services

Partners Interpreting
Independent service offering video remote interpreting, sign language interpreting, and CART services in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. See also: Request Interpreting Services

Tips for Working with an ASL Interpreter
Tips provided by the National Institutes of Health.

ASL Studies, Deaf Studies, and Interpreter Training Programs

ASL Studies, Deaf Studies Programs - to be updated

Interpreting Education Programs - to be updated

Road to Deaf Interpreting (RDI)
Interpreter training program for Deaf individuals aspiring to become Deaf Interpreters.

Professional Development and Resources for Interpreters

ASL and English Resources for Interpreting in Medical Settings (to be updated)
Information and resources related to medical and healthcare interpreting, and professional development, provided by the Center for the Advancement of Interpreter Education at St. Catherine University in Minnesota, a Regional Interpreter Education Center.

Deaf Interpreter Institute
Information, resources, and networking source for Deaf Interpreters (DI); includes training opportunities and directory of working Deaf Interpreters, provided by the National Consortium of Interpreter Education Centers.

Massachusetts Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (MassRID)
Statewide membership organization representing professional ASL interpreters in Massachusetts.

Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID)
National membership organization representing professional interpreters. See also: RID Standard Practice Papers

DeafBlind Resources

American Association of the DeafBlind (AADB)
Works to ensure that all DeafBlind people achieve their maximum potential through increased independence, productivity, and integration into the community.

DeafBlind Community Access Network (DBCAN)
Increases community and personal independence of DeafBlind adults referred by the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB) by training sighted ASL-fluent Providers and matching DeafBlind adults with a qualified, compatible Provider.

Deaf-Blind Contact Center (DBCC)
Empowers individuals who are deaf-blind to lead independent, productive and social lives by providing accessible communication, social opportunities, and transportation services.

Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults
Rehabilitation program for DeafBlind people to increase their independence.

Massachusetts Commission for the Blind (MCB)
Provides rehabilitation and social services to people who are blind and refers DeafBlind adults to DBCAN to increase independence and full community participation.

Perkins School for the Blind
Education for DeafBlind students ages 3-22.

Braille and Talking Book Library
Free services at Perkins School for the Blind for MA residents who are unable to read traditional print materials due to a visual or physical disability. Registration required.

LGBTQIA Resources

Deaf Gay Napoleon Club
A social club on Facebook for Deaf gay men and advocates in the New England region; also open to Deaf-friendly individuals who sign.

Rainbow Alliance of the Deaf (RAD)
National organization serving the interests of the Lesbian, Gay, Transgender, and Queer community through fellowship, education, advocacy, and outreach.

Hard of Hearing and Late-Deafened Resources

Association of Late-Deafened Adults (ALDA)
An inclusive organization that provides information, support, and social enrichment for all those with hearing loss. Boston chapter meetings are open to all, and generally provided with real-time captioning services (CART).

Hearing Loss Association (HLAA)
A national organization representing people with hearing loss; provides support and resources on for people and their families to learn how to adjust to living with hearing loss.

See also:
Boston Chapter
Find a Local Chapter

Savvy Consumer's Guide to Hearing Loss
Publication by Karen Rockow, PhD that includes resources for information about communication and assistive technology, coping strategies, and information about hearing loss for people who develop hearing loss later in life.

Speechreading Classes and Other Resources for People with Hearing Loss
MCDHH-compiled list of organizations that offer services to people with hearing loss, including speechreading, audiological testing, hearing aid evaluation and maintenance, and counseling.

Health, Mental Health and Substance Abuse

General Health

Deaf Wellness Center, University of Rochester Medical Center
Provides clinical services (particularly mental health) and conducts research and provides training activities pertaining to the mental health, healthcare, and sign language interpreting as it affects deaf and hard of hearing people.

Effective Communication for Health Care Providers
Information for health care providers about working with people with disabilities, effective communication, and best practices. Publication from the Center for Disabilities Studies at the University of Delaware.

Guide to Working with Deaf, Late-Deafened and Hard of Hearing Patients
Communication and cultural competency guide for medical professionals who work with patients who are Deaf or have hearing loss. Written by Karen Rockow, PhD.

National Center for Deaf Health Research (NCDHR)
Conducts health promotion and disease prevention activities through collaborative, community-based participatory research aimed at eliminating health disparities in deaf and hard of hearing populations.

Our Deaf Survivors Center (ODSC)
Provides culturally affirmative support services to Deaf victims/survivors of sexual and domestic violence through education, empowerment, and advocacy; and to promote awareness of cultural and linguistic considerations to service providers working with Deaf victims/survivors.

Project HOPE (Health Outreach, Prevention and Education)
Provides health education, support with managing health and healthcare, and medical and communication access advocacy services that includes HIV/AIDS case management and prevention education services for Deaf, DeafBlind, Hard of Hearing, and Late-Deafened people who want to improve their health and wellness. For health information in ASL, visit Project HOPE’s Deaf Health Channel.

Mental Health

Mental Health Unit for Deaf Persons (MHUDP) at Worcester State Hospital

Resource Directory of Mental Health Services for Deaf Persons (Gallaudet University)

Substance Abuse

Substance Abuse Services Overview (with ASL Video from MCDHH)
Message to the community from MCDHH about ASL-accessible substance abuse services; includes ASL video.

AA & NA Recovery Support Meetings with ASL or CART (Listed by Region)
Monthly list of recovery support group meetings (AA, NA, and Al-Anon) in Massachusetts with ASL or CART services.

Bridgemark Addiction Recovery Services
Nonprofit addiction treatment facility in Warwick, RI that provides a safe and stable environment for clients to learn and maintain a sober, drug and alcohol-free lifestyle; also serves d/Deaf people.

Needle Exchange Programs (July 2016)
Information from the Department of Public Health on proper use and disposal of syringes and needles, and a list of places where they can be disposed, sorted by town.


HIV/AIDS Peer Support Guide
List produced by AIDS Action Committee of HIV support groups and peer support groups in the Greater Boston and Metrowest areas.

HIV/AIDS Services and Resources Guide
Publication by the Department of Public Health listing services by category to assist consumers and providers in making appropriate referrals to HIV prevention, testing, treatment, or other health and social services; includes resources on viral hepatitis, sexually transmitted infections, substance abuse, and needle exchange programs.

Independent Living Services

Greater Boston

DEAF, Inc. Independent Living Services (Boston, MA)

DEAF, Inc. Senior Independent Living Services (Boston, MA)

Cape Cod & Islands Region

DEAF, Inc. Independent Living Services (Hyannis, MA)

Central and Western Regions

Center for Living and Working (Worcester, MA)

Viability, Inc. (Holyoke & Pittsfield, MA)

North Shore Region

DEAF, Inc. Independent Living Services (Salem, MA)

Northeast Region

DEAF, Inc. Independent Living Services (Lawrence, MA)

Southeast & South Shore Region

DEAF, Inc. Independent Living Services (New Bedford/Fall River, MA)

DEAF, Inc. Independent Living Services (Taunton, MA)

Residential Services

New England Homes for the Deaf (Danvers, MA)
Assisted living facility for Deaf and DeafBlind people, also provides residential and health care services.

Thompson House (Danvers, MA)
HUD-subsidized independent living facility for Deaf and DeafBlind.

Subscribe to our newly designed agency-wide newsletter!


Do you want to get updates from DEAF, Inc.?

Please select your preferred contents from DEAF, Inc.

* indicates required
DEAF, Inc. Announcement
Advocacy, Resources, and Education Services (ARES)
ASL Education
DEAF, Inc. Monthly Newsletter
ARES for Seniors
DBCAN (DeafBlind)