Effective use of cards for soliciting assistance to cross streets

The card has a drawing of one person guiding another, and says: 'Please help me to -- CROSS STREET -- TAP ME -- IF YOU CAN HELP -- I am deaf and blind.' The words 'Cross street, tap me' are highlighted in yellow.  
The card has small holes at the top right and bottom left; a neck cord attached to the bottom left corner.  The card is held by a see-through tab at the bottom.


The street-crossing card* pictured here incorporates all the principles of good card design including:

The card is laminated and has a tab centered at the bottom of the card so it can be held without covering up the text (the tab handle is formed by extending the lamination ˝” below the card and cutting off all but about 2” width in the center). To be more visible, the card is large (8”x4”) and is attached to a cord that can be worn around the neck for easy access, since it is too large for a pocket.

*Card was designed by Dr. Gene Bourquin, COMS, CI & CT, CLVT at Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults. Gene has studied the use of street-crossing cards for his dissertation -- for more information, click here. He can be contacted at OandMHK@msn.com.


To get assistance to cross a street, the deaf-blind person stands at the curb facing the street to be crossed, holding the street-crossing card over the shoulder where it can be seen from behind as well as in front. In order to be seen by people approaching from the side, the card can periodically be turned and held at a 90 degree angle long enough to allow people to see and read it (perhaps 30-40 seconds) – turning the card quickly may help draw attention to it.  

A deaf-blind man, Art, smiles and stands at the curb with his left hand holding the card above his left shoulder, to be seen from front and back.  His right arm is extended forward to hold a cane, the tip of the cane is at the curb.  Photo shows same scene as before, but the card has been turned 90 degrees to be seen from the sides.                                                 
When tapped, the deaf-blind person points toward the street that is desired to be crossed.

A man behind Art looks at the card and taps Art's left shoulder. With the man standing behind Art's left shoulder, Art points forward across the street he wants to cross.
If the guide takes the deaf-blind person’s arm, the deaf-blind person uses the Hines break to smoothly and politely take the arm of the guide.

The man's right hand holds Art's left elbow while the man encourages Art to walk forward. Art reaches back with his right hand and grasps the man's right wrist. With his right hand, Art has removed the man's right hand from his elbow and brought it forward, and Art then reaches for the man's right elbow with his left hand.
After the deaf-blind person has the arm of the guide, they cross the street.

The man starts to guide Art across the street. The man starts to guide Art across the street (photo shows it from another angle.

Grateful appreciation to Arthur Roehrig and Frederick Sauerburger for being photographed for these illustrations.


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