Latino Deaf Community and Organizations

Hispanic Family taking a Selfie
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The nation's deaf Latino (or Hispanic) community is continuing to grow, with more conferences, organizations, and websites about deaf Latinos. A good portion of future growth in deaf and hard of hearing organization membership may come from the Latino community.


The National Council of Hispano Deaf and Hard of Hearing (NCHDHH) has evolved from past organizational efforts in the deaf Latino community. It currently has a headquarters office at the New Mexico School for the Deaf in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Some states have deaf Latino associations. Known state deaf Latino associations to date include the Wisconsin Hispanic Association of the Deaf, the Texas Latino Council of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, the Illinois Deaf Latino Association, and the Latino Deaf and Hard of Hearing Association of the Metropolitan DC Area, Inc.

Some colleges have deaf Latino organizations. For example, the Rochester Institute of Technology has a Hispanic Deaf Club. Gallaudet University has a Latino Student Union.


The deaf Latino community holds conferences. The NCHDHH announces conference information on its website. Some state organizations also hold their own conferences.

Role Models

Perhaps the best known deaf Latino role model is Gallaudet University president, Robert R. Davila. Dr. Davila grew up in a migrant family, and his life and achievements are chronicled in the book Moments of Truth: Robert R. Davila, published by RIT Press.

Additional Resources

Some states have organizations that offer services to deaf Latinos. One such organization is Deaf Counseling, Advocacy, and Referral Agency (DCARA) based in San Leandro, California, which has a Foreign-Born Deaf Program. A good resource for parents of deaf and hard of hearing Latino children is Signing Fiesta. This organization sells Spanish and English sign language videos and books, including a video on visiting the audiologist. Signing Fiesta currently offers unique titles such as Historia De La Education De Los Sordos En Mexico Y Lenguaje Por Senas Mexicano, about deaf education in Mexico.

The National Multicultural Interpreter Project, a project that ended in 2000, has a downloadable outline and lecture notes that are part of a curriculum on cultural awareness and sensitivity, Section VI: Hispanic/Latino(a) Knowledge and Sensitivity.

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