The FCC Advancement in Accessibility Award Recipient: Accessible Pharmacy

Andy/ December 2, 2021/ Uncategorized

Accessible Pharmacy has been awarded the FCC Advancement in Accessibility Award!  We are grateful, proud and excited. The other recipients include Apple & Communication Service for the Deaf.  Below is a link to the recording of the award ceremony and the transcription. To read about the award, go to https://www.fcc.gov/FCCAAA.

FCC - Advancement in Accessibility Award - RECORDING

CLICK FOR THE RECORDING OF THE AWARD CEREMONY

 

Below is the transcription of the award ceremony:

PLEASE STAND BY PLEASE STAND BY PLEASE STAND BY PATRICK: GOOD MORNING, EVERYONE. WELCOME TO OUR CEREMONY TO HONOR THE WINNERS OF THE 2021 FCC CHAIRS AWARDS FOR ADVANCEMENTS IN ACCESSIBILITY. I AM PATRICK WEBRE, CHIEF OF THE FCC’S CONSUMER AND GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS BUREAU. SINCE 2011, THESE AWARDS, WHICH WE AFFECTIONATELY CALL THE CHAIR’S AAA HAVE RECOGNIZED AND PROMOTED ACCESSIBILITY BY HONORING THE DEVELOPMENT OF TECHNOLOGIES THAT INCREASE ACCESS AND IMPROVE THE LIVES OF THE DISABILITY COMMUNITY. THIS IS THE FIFTH TIME I’VE BEEN PRIVILEGED TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS EVENT AND I CONTINUE TO BE IMPRESSED BY THE CREATIVE APPROACHES THAT THE WINNERS HAVE DEVELOPED TO ADVANCE ACCESSIBILITY BY LEVERAGING TECHNOLOGY TO CREATE A MORE INCLUSIVE WORLD. PREVIOUS WINNERS HAVE RANGED FROM A USB HUMAN INTERFACE DEVICE STANDARD FOR EYE TRACKERS TO THE INTEGRATED DESCRIBED VIDEO BEST PRACTICES GUIDE WITH TOO MANY TECHNICAL INNOVATIONS IN BETWEEN TO NAME TODAY. NOT EVERY CHAIR’S AAA WINNER HAS BEEN A COMMUNICATIONS PRODUCT SERVICE BUT IN LOOKING BACK AT A DECADE OF HONOREES, IT’S CLEAR ACCESS TO ROBUST BROADBAND NETWORKS HAS BEEN A COMMON INGREDIENT, ENSURING THAT EVERYONE HAS ACCESS TO BROADBAND, AND TO THE MANY ACCESSIBLE TOOLS AND BROADBAND CAN PROVIDE IS AN IMPORTANT PART OF OUR WORK AT THE FCC. LAST YEAR, IN RECOGNITION OF THE 30TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT, AND THE 10TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE 21ST CENTURY COMMUNICATIONS AND VIDEO ACCESSIBILITY ACT, THE CHAIR’S AAA REDIRECTED ITS FOCUS TO RECOGNIZE INDIVIDUALS WHO HAVE DEDICATED THEIR CAREERS TO ADVANCEMENTS IN ACCESSIBILITY. THIS YEAR, WE ARE ONCE AGAIN FOCUSING ON INNOVATIVE PRODUCTS AND SOLUTIONS WITH A SPECIFIC FOCUS ON ADVANCEMENTS THAT HAVE IMPROVED ACCESSIBILITY DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC. SO, LET’S GET STARTED. DELIVERING THE FCC CHAIR KEYNOTE ADDRESS, A TRAILBLAZER IN HER OWN RIGHT, I’M HONORED TO INTRODUCE CHAIRWOMAN OF THE FCC, JESSICA ROSENWORCEL. MADAM CHAIRWOMAN.

CHAIRWOMAN ROSENWORCEL: GOOD MORNING AND HAPPY DECEMBER, AND THANK YOU ALL FOR JOINING US. IT’S AN HONOR TO WELCOME YOU TO THE FCC’S 11TH ANNUAL AAA AWARDS. SINCE 2011, THE AGENCY HAS USED THESE AWARDS TO RECOGNIZE ADVANCEMENTS IN TECHNOLOGY THAT MAKES THE WORLD MORE ACCESSIBLE TO PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES. FOR THIS YEARS AWARDS, WE HAVE A FEW SMALL BUT NOTABLE CHANGES. FOR ONE THING, THE FORMAL NAME OF THE AWARDS IS NO LONGER THE CHAIRMAN’S AWARDS FOR ADVANCEMENT INACCESSIBLE ABILITY BECAUSE, WELL, YOURS TRULY. ANOTHER CHANGE IS THAT WE HAVE NARROWED THE FOCUS OF THE TECHNOLOGIES WE WANT TO RECOGNIZE THIS YEAR, FOR REASONS WE ALL UNDERSTAND, WE WANTED TO RECOGNIZE ADVANCEMENTS THAT IMPROVED ACCESSIBILITY DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC. WHEN THE PANDEMIC BEGAN, IT FELT LIKE EVERYTHING CHANGED ALMOST OVERNIGHT, INCLUDING OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH TECHNOLOGY. OUR LIVES MOVED FROM IN PERSON TO REMOTE. REMOTE WORK, REMOTE SCHOOL, AND REMOTE INTERACTIONS WITH FAMILY AND FRIENDS. WE HAD TO LEARN TO USE NEW TOOLS AND NEW COMMUNICATION PLATFORMS AND SERVICES, AND WE ALL KNOW THOSE NEW TOOLS AND PLATFORMS THAT WERE THRUST UPON SO MANY OF US, THEY NEED TO BE ACCESSIBLE. BUT TOO OFTEN THEY WERE NOT. BECAUSE WE KNOW PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES HAD CHALLENGES WHEN TRYING TO MAKE USE OF TELEHEALTH SERVICES, NAVIGATING ONLINE PURCHASES AND PARTICIPATION, AND USING ALL THE CONFERENCING PLATFORMS WE SUDDENLY NEEDED FOR SCHOOL AND WORK. COMPATIBILITY WITH SCREEN READERS OFTEN WASN’T BUILT IN AND THE IMPACT OF SOCIAL DISTANCING REQUIREMENTS AND HOW THAT WOULD HAVE CONSEQUENCES FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES WHO DEPEND ON INTERPRETERS, THAT WAS NOT REALLY ACCOUNTED FOR. THIS IS THE HUMAN COST OF FAILURE TO THINK ABOUT INCLUSION FROM THE START IN THE INNOVATION PROCESS. WE NEED PEOPLE THINKING ABOUT DISABILITIES IN THE ROOM FROM THE VERY BEGINNING, WHEN PROBLEM SOLVING STARTS AND STRATEGIZING COUNTS. THEIR INSIGHT AND EXPERTISE SHOULD BE EMBRACED THROUGHOUT THE CREATIVE PROCESS. BRAINSTORMING, DESIGNING, TESTING BEST PRACTICE DEVELOPMENT, AND OF COURSE, RELEASE. THE BOTTOM LINE IS ACCESSIBLE DESIGN SHOULD NOT BE AN AFTERTHOUGHT FOR SOMETHING THAT WE JUST TRY TO RETROFIT. FOR OVER A DECADE, THE FCC HAS BEEN RECOGNIZING INNOVATIONS THAT PUT ACCESSIBILITY FIRST. INNOVATIONS THAT SEEK TO TACKLE DIFFICULT PROBLEMS. THEY OFTEN FIND BROADER USE CASES BECAUSE GOOD DESIGN IS ACCESSIBLE DESIGN. OUR GOAL THIS YEAR WAS FOR NOMINATIONS HIGHLIGHTING INNOVATIVE PRACTICES, TECHNOLOGIES, AND ORGANIZATIONS THAT CREATIVELY LEVERAGED CAN COMMUNICATIONS AND BROADBAND TECHNOLOGY TO BREAK DOWN ACCESSIBILITY BARRIERS AND INSURE PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES CAN MORE FULLY PARTICIPATE IN OUR CONNECTED WORLD. WE RECEIVED A NUMBER OF NOMINATIONS THAT HIGHLIGHTED EFFORTS TO CONNECT RESOURCES TO ISOLATED INDIVIDUALS LIVING WITH DISABILITIES AND TO PROVIDE ACCOMMODATION FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES AND AN INCREASINGLY REMOTE WORLD. FROM THESE NOMINATIONS, WE SELECTED THREE WINNERS. APPLE, ACCESSIBLE PHARMACY SERVICES FOR THE BLIND, AND COMMUNICATION SERVICES FOR THE DEAF. DURING A TIME OF UNPRECEDENTED UNCERTAINTY AND URGENCY, EACH ADVANCED ACCESSIBILITY IN A WAY THAT MADE A MATERIAL IMPACT ON PEOPLE’S LIVES. THEY CREATED SOLUTIONS TO UNIQUE CHALLENGES THAT AROSE AS A RESULT OF THE PANDEMIC. BUT I THINK EACH OF THEIR SOLUTIONS WILL ALSO FIND BROADER USE CASES THAT OUTLIVE THE PANDEMIC. IN A MOMENT, WE WILL CELEBRATE EACH OF THESE ENTITIES INDIVIDUALLY. YOU’LL LEARN THE DETAILS OF THEIR WINNING INNOVATION AND YOU’LL HEAR FROM A REPRESENTATIVE OF EACH. THEY WILL BE AWARDED AWARDS THAT LOOK LIKE THIS. ONE OF THESE REALLY NICE AWARDS, I THINK, WOULD LOOK GOOD IN ANY OFFICE. I WANT TO BRIEFLY PUT TODAY’S AWARD INTO THE CONTEXT OF THE FCC’S BROADER EFFORTS TO PROMOTE ACCESSIBILITY. EARLIER, I TALKED ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF EVOLVING PEOPLE WITH DESIGN PROCESSES. THIS IS SOMETHING WE TRY TO EMBRACE AT THE FCC IN A RULEMAKING PROCESS BECAUSE WE NOT ONLY WANT TO IMPROVE ACCESSIBILITY FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES, WE STRIVE TO DO SO BY COMMUNICATING AND PARTNERING WITH PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES, SO THAT WE CAN HELP MAKE SURE OUR POLICIES TRULY MEET THEIR NEEDS. GUIDED BY THIS APPROACH, WE HAVE TAKEN STEPS TO IMPROVE ACCESS FOR THE DISABILITY COMMUNITY VIA TELECOMMUNICATIONS, MEDIA, AND BROADBAND POLICY MATTERS. IN FACT, AT THIS MONTH’S FCC OPEN MEETING, WE WILL BE VOTING ON REPOSE ALL TO UPDATE OUR EMERGENCY ALERTING SYSTEM TO IMPROVE, THE ACCESSIBILITY OF EMERGENCY ALERTS INCLUDING FOR THOSE WHO ARE DEAF AND HARD OF HEARING. IN ADDITION THROUGHOUT THE PANDEMIC, THE FCC HAS SOUGHT TO ENSURE THE UNINTERRUPTED AVAILABILITY OF TELECOMMUNICATIONS RELAY SERVICES FOR PERSONS WHO ARE DEAF, HARD OF HEARING, DEAFBLIND, OR HAVE SPEECH DISABILITIES. MEANWHILE, WE HAVE ALSO EXPANDED DESCRIPTION SERVICES TO 10 MORE MARKETS IN 2021, AND ANOTHER 10 ARE COMING ON BOARD IN 2022. WE HAVE ALSO ADOPTED THE 2019 ANSI HEARING EIGHT COMPATIBILITY STANDARDS WHICH UPDATES THE REQUIREMENTS FOR DETERMINING WHETHER WIRELESS HANDSETS ARE COMPATIBLE WITH HEARING AIDS. FOR THE FIRST TIME, THIS STANDARD MANDATES THAT WIRELESS HANDSETS PROVIDE SUITABLE SOUND AMPLIFICATIONS FOR PEOPLE WITH HEARING LOSS. MOVING FORWARD, WE ARE LOOKING AT RECOMMENDATIONS TO IMPROVE THE EFFORTS ASSOCIATED WITH THE NOW 10-YEAR-OLD 21ST-CENTURY COMMUNICATIONS AND VIDEO ACCESSIBILITY ACT, WHICH I’M PROUD TO SAY I HELPED DEVELOP WHEN I WAS A SENATE STAFFER. BACK IN THE DAYS WHEN WE WERE ALWAYS IN THE OFFICE AND HELD THIS KIND OF EVENT IN PERSON, IF YOU VISITED ME AT MY DESK, YOU WOULD FIND A SIGNED COPY OF THIS CIVIL RIGHTS LEGISLATION ON MY WALL. AND OUR EFFORT TO TAKE A FRESH LOOK AT THESE ISSUES KICKS OFF TOMORROW WITH THE SESSION WE ARE HOLDING ON VIDEO PROGRAMMING ACCESSIBILITY TO DISCUSS THE STATE OF CLOSED CAPTIONING ONLINE. FINALLY, WE WILL NOT DELIVER ACCESS AND OPPORTUNITY FOR ALL WITHOUT BROADBAND FOR ALL, AND THE RECENTLY SIGNED BIPARTISAN INFRASTRUCTURE LEGISLATION PROVIDES THE FCC AND OTHER GOVERNMENT AGENCIES WITH A HOST OF NEW TOOLS AND UNPRECEDENTED FUNDING TO MOVE OUR NATION CLOSER TO OUR VISION OF A BROADBAND THAT IS AVAILABLE AS FOR EVERYONE EVERYWHERE. ENOUGH ABOUT THE FCC’S WORK. THIS IS A DAY TO CELEBRATE. I WANT TO THANK EVERYONE WHO PARTICIPATED IN BRINGING THIS EVENT TOGETHER. I WANT TO OFFER MY HEARTFELT CONGRATULATIONS TO THIS YEAR’S WINNERS. ED BARTHOLME OF OUR CONSUMER AND GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS BUREAU WILL TELL YOU ABOUT THE MEDICINE COMPLIMENTS. TAKE IT AWAY. THE VIRTUAL FLOOR IS YOURS.

ED: THANK YOU, CHAIRWOMAN ROSENWORCEL. I HAVE THE HONOR OF SERVING ON THE JUDGING PANEL FOR THIS YEAR’S AWARDS. I’M EXCITED TO INTRODUCE TODAY’S HONOREES. OUR FIRST 2021 FCC CHAIR’S AAA HONOREE IS COMMUNICATION SERVICES FOR THE DEAF, CSD. CSD’S CONNECT DIRECT SUBSIDIARY ENABLES DEAF COLLARS TO CONNECT WITH TRAINED DEAF CALL CENTER AGENTS VIA VIDEO, ALLOWING THEM TO COMMUNICATE WITH EACH OTHER DIRECTLY RATHER THAN RELYING ON THIRD-PARTY INTERMEDIARIES SUCH AS INTERPRETERS. THIS IS OFTEN REFERRED TO AS DIRECT VIDEO CALLING OR DVC. CSD ESTABLISHED AN ASL BASED COVID-19 HOTLINE TO MAKE CRITICAL PANDEMIC INFORMATION READILY AVAILABLE TO THE DEAF PEOPLE IN THEIR NATIVE LANGUAGE. THE HOTLINE SUPPORTS AN OVERALL EFFORT FROM CSD TO PROVIDE ACCESSIBLE INFORMATION ABOUT THE ONGOING PANDEMIC TO THE DEAF COMMUNITY VIA ASL VIDEOS AND A COMPREHENSIVE WEBSITE. HERE, VIA VIDEO, TO ACCEPT THE AWARD IS CSD CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER CHRIS SOUKUP. IF WE COULD CUE THE VIDEO PLEASE.

CHRIS: IT IS A TREMENDOUS HONOR AND PRIVILEGE TO ACCEPT THE ADVANCEMENT IN ACCESSIBILITY AWARD ON BEHALF OF COMMUNICATION SERVICES FOR THE DEAF. I WANT TO CONVEY MY HEARTFELT APPRECIATION TO THE COMMISSION AND ITS NEW CHAIR, JESSICA ROSENWORCEL, FOR THIS RECOGNITION. FUNDAMENTALLY, ADVANCING ACCESSIBILITY IS REALLY ABOUT EQUITY AND BUILDING A MORE EQUITABLE WORLD. 447 YEARS, CSD HAS WORKED TO ELIMINATE BARRIERS AND TO CONFRONT MISPERCEPTION AND BIAS ABOUT THE INCREDIBLE CAPABILITY AND TALENT THAT RESIDE WITHIN THE DISABILITY COMMUNITY. WE HAVE IN PARTNERSHIP WITH ADVOCATES, ORGANIZATIONS AND GOVERNMENT SUPPORTERS ACCOMPLISHED A GREAT MANY THINGS SINCE OUR INCEPTION, AND THE WORLD IS MUCH MORE OPEN TO DEAF AND DISABLED AMERICANS THAN EVER BEFORE. HOWEVER, WE ARE REALLY ONLY AT THE MIDPOINT OF OUR JOURNEY, AND THERE IS STILL MUCH WORK THAT REMAINS TO BE DONE. EQUITY AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS DEMANDS THAT WE CONTINUE TO SEEK OUT WAYS TO ACHIEVE A COMMUNICATIONS EXPERIENCE FOR DEAF AND DISABLED AMERICANS THAT FEELS AS COMPLETE AS THE COMMUNICATION EXPERIENCE ENJOYED BY THE GENERAL PUBLIC. CSD HAS SPENT THE LAST 10 YEARS WORKING TO DEVELOP A NEW CLASS OF SOLUTIONS THAT GO BEYOND RELAY, THAT REDUCE THE RELIANCE ON FACILITATORS, AND PROVIDE DEAF PEOPLE WITH GREATER AUTONOMY IN THE WAY THAT THEY INTERACT WITH CORPORATIONS AND GOVERNMENT. WE INVITE ALL OF YOU TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THESE SOLUTIONS AND TO SUPPORT ITS WIDESPREAD ADOPTION AS AN ESSENTIAL PART OF OUR WORK TO BUILD A MORE EQUITABLE WORLD. AUTONOMY AND EQUALITY IN COMMUNICATION HELPS TO LEVEL THE PLAYING FIELD FOR DEAF AND DISABLED AMERICANS, MILLIONS OF PEOPLE WHO IN SPITE OF OUR PAST PROGRESS TO NEED TO EXPERIENCE ECONOMIC HARDSHIP AND DIFFICULTY FINDING EMPLOYMENT. AUTONOMY AND ACCESS TO A NEW CLASS OF SOLUTIONS WILL REDUCE EMPLOYER HESITANCY ABOUT A DEAF OR DISABLED PERSONS ABILITY TO MEET THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE POSITION THEY ARE APPLYING FOR. I WANT TO EXPRESS APPRECIATION ALSO FOR ALL OF OUR CORPORATE, INSTITUTION, AND GOVERNMENT PARTNERS THAT ARE COMMITTED TO INNOVATION AND THE ADOPTION OF THESE NEW SOLUTIONS. THANK YOU FOR RECOGNIZING THE VALUE OF THE DISABILITY PERSPECTIVE, FOR SEEKING OUT DISABLED EMPLOYEES, AND FOR MAKING THE EFFORT TO ENSURE THAT MORE DISABLED CUSTOMERS HAVE AN EQUITABLE EXPERIENCE INTERACTING WITH YOUR ORGANIZATION. I WANT TO ESPECIALLY THANK THE COMMISSION FOR YOUR ADVOCACY AND SUPPORT OF WORK THAT ADVANCES ACCESSIBILITY.

CHAIRWOMAN ROSENWORCEL: THANK YOU — ED: THANK YOU, CHRIS. CONGRATULATIONS AGAIN TO CSD. OUR NEXT HONOREE IS NO STRANGER TO THE CHAIR’S AAA. IN 2011, APPLE RECEIVED AN AWARD FOR THEIR THEN NEW IPHONE 4. THIS TIME AROUND, WE ARE RECOGNIZING THEIR SOFTWARE INSTEAD OF A HARDWARE DEVICE. APPLE RELEASED A SUITE OF ACCESSIBILITY FEATURES AND UPGRADES TO ITS MOBILE OPERATING SYSTEM IOS 14 THAT HAVE PARTICULAR IMPORTANCE IN THE CONTEXT OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC. PEOPLE DETECTION, SIGN LANGUAGE PROMINENCE, SOUND RECOGNITION, AND VOICEOVER RECOGNITION. THEIR WORK TO INCLUDE SIGNIFICANT ACCESSIBILITY DEVELOPMENTS IN A UBIQUITOUS MOBILE DEVICE PLATFORM HIGHLIGHTS THE FACT THAT ACCESSIBLE DESIGN IS GOOD DESIGN . THE ADVANCES DEVELOPED BY APPLE LEVERAGING MACHINE LEARNING ON IOS 14 ARE AMPLIFIED BY OUR INCREASED RELIANCE ON TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND MOBILE DEVICES DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC. THESE FEATURES ADVANCE ACCESSIBILITY ACROSS MULTIPLE DOMAINS, IN PERSON SUPPORT FOR AMBIENT SOUND AND SOCIAL DISTANCING, FEELING ACCESSIBILITY GAPS FOR ONLINE CONTENT AT A TIME WHEN ONLINE HAS BECOME A PRIMARY OUTLET. FINDING INFORMATION AND SHOPPING ONLINE HAVE BECOME A PRIMARY OUTLET FOR PUBLIC HEALTH INFORMATION AND OTHER ASPECTS OF OUR DAILY LIVES. AND BRINGING RECOGNITION AND SUPPORT FOR SIGN LANGUAGE USERS INTO THE VIDEOCONFERENCING SPACE AT A TIME WHEN THAT MARKETPLACE HAS EXPLODED. ACCEPTING THE AWARD FOR APPLE IS SARAH HERRLINGER, DIRECTOR OF GLOBAL ACCESSIBILITY POLICY AND INNOVATIONS AT APPLE. CONGRATULATIONS, SARAH. THE VIRTUAL PODIUM IS YOURS.

SARAH: THANK YOU SO MUCH. WE ARE SO HONORED TO RECEIVE THIS. ON BEHALF OF EVERYONE AT APPLE, THANK YOU TO THE FCC FOR THIS YEAR’S AWARD IN ADVANCEMENTS IN ACCESSIBILITY. WE ARE HUMBLED TO BE RECOGNIZED TODAY. OR ALL THE HONOREES, THE WORK WE ARE CELEBRATING HERE IS CRITICAL BECAUSE IT LAYS THE FOUNDATION NECESSARY FOR A MORE EQUITABLE WORLD. IT IS WORK THAT STRIVES TO GIVE PEOPLE DIGNITY AND THE TOOLS TO LIVE INDEPENDENTLY. AND WHEN THE FCC SHINES A LIGHT ON ADVANCEMENTS IN ACCESSIBILITY, IT IS SENDING A STRONG AND CLEAR MESSAGE THAT THIS WORK IS IMPORTANT AND DESERVING OF INVESTMENT. SO I WOULD ALSO LIKE TO THANK CHAIRWOMAN ROSENWORCEL AND THE ENTIRE AGENCY FOR THEIR COMMITMENT TO THESE GROUNDBREAKING INNOVATIONS IN TECHNOLOGY. WE ARE GRATEFUL TO YOUR LEADERSHIP IN THIS AREA AND YOUR CONTINUING SUPPORT OF INNOVATION AND INGENUITY. APPLE IS ALWAYS FOCUSED ON CREATING THE BEST PRODUCTS AND SERVICES FOR OUR CUSTOMERS TO LEARN, CONNECT, AND PURSUE THEIR PASSIONS, BUT BLUE WE BELIEVE — WE BELIEVE TECHNOLOGY IS AT ITS BEST WHEN IT SUPPORTS EVERYONE, INCLUDING THOSE WITH DISABILITIES. THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC MADE THIS NEED EVEN GREATER AND MORE URGENT. AS NECESSITY PUSHED US FARTHER AWAY FROM EACH OTHER PHYSICALLY, WE FOCUSED OUR ENERGY ON DEVELOPING NEW WAYS THAT TECHNOLOGY COULD KEEP US AND — KEEP US SAFE. WE LOOK TO SCANNERS AND MACHINE LEARNING ALGORITHMS TO BUILD OUR PEOPLE DETECTING PICTURE WHICH HELPS MEMBERS OF THE BLACK COMMUNITY KNOW WHEN SOMEONE IS NEARBY SO THEY CAN MAINTAIN SOCIAL DISTANCING. WE HEARD FROM A MEMBER OF THE BLIND COMMUNITY WHO SAID SHE WAS ANXIOUS ABOUT LEAVING THE HOUSE DURING THE PANDEMIC BECAUSE SHE WAS NOT SURE HOW CLOSE SHE WAS TO PEOPLE OUTSIDE. AFTER LISTENING TO HER IPHONE DESCRIBED THE PROXIMITY TO OTHERS ON THE STREET THROUGH PROXIMITY DETECTION, SHE SAID I’M EXCITED I CAN BE IN CONTROL AGAIN. IN THE FALL OF 2020, WE ALSO RELEASED OUR SOUND RECOGNITION FEATURE WITH IOS 14, ALERTING USERS TO NOISES LIKE A DOG BARKING, ALARM GOING OFF, OR THE SOUND OF RUNNING WATER. SINCE ITS RELEASE, WE HAVE HEARD FROM MEMBERS OF THE DEAF AND HARD OF HEARING HEARING COMMUNITY THAT SAY IT IS INVALUABLE NOW THAT THEY ARE AT HOME WORKING ALONE. ONE CUSTOMER SAID THAT SHE DISCOVERED HER DAUGHTER HAD LOCKED HERSELF IN THE BATHROOM AFTER SOUND RECOGNITION ALERTED HER TO HER CRYING. THESE ARE JUST TWO OF THE FEATURES WE HAVE INTRODUCED TO HELP OUR USERS NAVIGATE A WORLD TRANSFORMED BY THE PANDEMIC. AND THEY WERE IMAGINED AND MADE REAL THINGS TO THE HARD WORK OF SO MANY TEAMS AT APPLE. THE SOFTWARE DEVELOPERS WHO FUSE TECHNOLOGY AND HUMANITIES SO THAT COMPUTERS CAN ANALYZE AUDIO AND RECOGNIZE IT AS A CRY FOR HELP. THE DESIGNERS WHO APPLY THEIR CREATIVITY TO MAKE PHYSICAL MATERIALS TRANSCEND TRADITIONAL FUNCTIONALITY. THE ENGINEERS WHO EXPAND WHAT WE UNDERSTAND IT IS POSSIBLE SO THAT EVERYONE CAN EXPERIENCE THE WORLD ON THEIR OWN TERMS. AND SO MANY PEOPLE ACROSS COMMUNITIES WITH DISABILITIES AT APPLE AND BEYOND WHO HAVE CONTRIBUTED THEIR INVALUABLE EXPERTISE TO BRING THESE FEATURES TO LIFE. I’M GRATEFUL FOR THAT PARTNERSHIP. I AM GRATEFUL TO THE FCC FOR RECOGNIZING APPLE’S WORK. I’M GRATEFUL TO OUR CUSTOMERS AROUND THE WORLD WHO SHOW US HOW THE TOOLS WE HAVE BUILT HELP THEM CREATE A BETTER AND BRIGHTER FUTURE FOR US ALL. THANK YOU.

ED: CONGRATULATIONS TO APPLE. THANK YOU, SARAH. OUR FINAL HONOREE TODAY IS ACCESSIBLE PHARMACY SERVICES FOR THE BLIND. LAUNCHED IN 2020 AND SPECIALIZING IN THE NEEDS OF THE BLIND AND LOW VISION COMMUNITY, THIS COMPANY HAS BECOME A ONE-STOP SHOP FOR PRESCRIPTION MEDICATIONS PROVIDED WITH AN ARRAY OF ACCESSIBILITY TOOLS SUCH AS BRAILLE, LARGE PRINT, AND AUDIO VERSIONS. ACCESSIBLE PHARMACY PROVIDES THE FULL RANGE OF OPTIONS INCLUDING RFID TAGS AND MEDICATION BOTTLES. WITH A SMART PHONE APP CALLED SCRIPTTALK THAT CAN READ ALOUD MEDICATION INFORMATION WHEN THE BOTTLE IS PUT UP TO A PHONE. OF PARTICULAR IMPACT DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC WAS THE ADDITION OF THE COVID-19 AT HOME TESTING KITS ABOUT IT ACCESSIBLE MATERIAL AND AUGMENTED BY REMOTE SUPPORT FOR SAMPLE COLLECTION AND RESULTS INTERPRETATION VIA THE BE MY EYES APP, WHICH CONNECTS A SIDED AGENT VIA VIDEO TO ASSIST BLIND OR LOW VISION INDIVIDUAL. ACCEPTING THE AWARD FOR ACCESSIBLE PHARMACY FOR THE BLIND IS DR. ADAM — ALEX COHEN. CONGRATULATIONS. THE FLOOR IS YOURS.

DR. COHEN: HELLO. WE ARE SO INCREDIBLY HONORED TO ACCEPT THIS AWARD. IT HAS REALLY BEEN A DREAM COME TRUE. ON BEHALF OF MYSELF AND THE OTHER TWO COFOUNDERS OF ACCESSIBLE PHARMACY SERVICES, DR. JASON FERRET, ANDY BURSTEIN, WE WANT TO START BY THANKING CHAIRWOMAN ROSENWORCEL AND THE FOLKS AT FCC FOR THIS TREMENDOUS HONOR. WE ALSO REALLY MUST THANK ALL THE PEOPLE THAT WORKED SO HARD TO MAKE ACCESSIBLE PHARMACY SERVICES RUN, INCLUDING OUR PHARMACISTS, OUR TEAM OF BOTH BLIND AND SIGHTED CUSTOMER CARE REPRESENTATIVES, SALESPEOPLE, AND OF COURSE, OUR PATIENTS THAT WE LEARN FROM EVERYDAY. I MYSELF AM BLIND. I WAS DIAGNOSED WITH A DEGENERATIVE RETINAL DISEASE 25 YEARS AGO, AND BECAME A PART OF THE COMMUNITY. TO ME, ACCESSIBILITY AND THE PURSUIT OF ACCESSIBILITY IS CONTINUOUS. I FEEL THAT NO COMPANY, NO ORGANIZATION IS INACCESSIBLE WITH MALICE. IT IS NOT INTENTIONAL. HOWEVER, WHEN A PERSON WITH THE DISABILITY HAS ANY TYPE OF NEGATIVE INTERACTION THROUGHOUT THE ENTIRE PROCESS OF LEARNING ABOUT A COMPANY AND PRODUCT TO PURCHASING OR USING THE PRODUCT, IF THERE IS ANY TYPE OF NEGATIVE INTERACTION BETWEEN THOSE TOUCH POINTS AND THE INDIVIDUAL WITH DISABILITY, THERE IS A FEELING OF EXCLUSION, A FEELING OF UNWELCOME, A FEELING OF SADNESS, OF NOT BEING EXPECTED OR WANTED AS A CUSTOMER. IN OUR CASE, LOOKING AT HEALTH CARE AND MEDICATION MANAGEMENT, MEDICATION MANAGEMENT IS INCREDIBLY DIFFICULT FOR EVERYONE. WHEN WE THROW IN THE ADDED VARIABLE OF A DISABILITY, LIKE BLINDNESS OR LOW VISION, IT BECOMES EVEN MORE PARAMOUNT THAT ACCESSIBILITY FEATURES AND A COMBINATION ARE IN PLACE TO HELP SAFEGUARD THOSE PATIENTS AND PRODUCE BETTER OUTCOMES, BETTER HEALTH-RELATED RELATED OUTCOMES FOR THOSE INDIVIDUALS. NOW, WE DID NOT MEAN TO START OUR COMPANY, WE DIDN’T MEAN TO LAUNCH AT THE START OF THE PANDEMIC, BUT IT DID CREATE A RARE OPPORTUNITY FOR US. IN THAT, HAVING THE INEQUITY IN COMMUNICATION, PARTICULARLY AS IT RELATES TO HEALTH CARE INFORMATION FOR THE BLIND AND LOW VISION COMMUNITY, IT PROVIDED US AN OPPORTUNITY WHERE OUR SPECIAL SERVICES AND ACCOMMODATION COULD REALLY HELP IN THESE INDIVIDUALS FEEL MORE INCLUDED ANIMAL COME — AND WELCOME, EVEN WHILE THIS WAS TAKING PLACE. OFFERING HOME DELIVERY, A MULTIPLE NUMBER OF COMMUNICATION PLATFORMS. AS WAS MENTIONED, WE CAN INDICATE WITH OUR PATIENTS THROUGH A WONDERFUL TECHNOLOGY CALLED BE MY EYES. BE MY EYES REACHES ROUGHLY 300,000 USERS, WHICH IS ABSOLUTELY AMAZING, BUT THERE ARE MORE THAN 10 MILLION BLIND AND LOW VISION INDIVIDUALS IN THIS COUNTRY. A TECHNOLOGICAL INNOVATION, AS WONDERFUL AS IT IS, WE DON’T VIEW THIS AS A PANACEA TO FIX ALL PROBLEMS. WE UNDERSTAND THAT EACH PATIENT IS UNIQUE, AND THEY ARE COMING TO US , PEOPLE HAVE DIFFERENT SUPPORT SYSTEMS, EDUCATION, INCOME LEVELS, LEVELS OF TECHNOLOGY, AGILITY, AND KNOWLEDGE, DIFFERENT MALADIES, OF COURSE. SO BY LOOKING AT EACH INDIVIDUAL AS A UNIQUE INDIVIDUAL, IT ALLOWS US TO CUSTOMIZE OUR SUPPORT SYSTEMS IN ACCESSIBILITY. SO WE FIRST BEGAN WITH AN EXCELLENT AND CLINICAL CARE COMBINED WITH SUPERIOR CUSTOMER SERVICE. THEN EVERYTHING ELSE WE LOOK AT WITH EACH INDIVIDUAL PATIENT IS SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED TO ALLEVIATE ANY BURDENS OR CHALLENGES THAT MAY RESULT FROM HAVING A DISABILITY, SPECIFICALLY BLIND OR LOW VISION. NOW, EACH TECHNOLOGICAL INNOVATION THAT WE USE HELPS A CERTAIN GROUP OF INDIVIDUALS, A CERTAIN CLUSTER OF OUR PATIENTS. WITH THAT, IT IS OUR DUTY TO UNDERSTAND HOW INNOVATIONS AND TECHNOLOGIES CAN HELP PROVIDE GREATER INDEPENDENCE, GREATER ACCESSIBILITY AND INFORMATION FOR THESE INDIVIDUALS. NOW, BEING BLIND, OUR PATIENT IS ALWAYS BLIND, FROM POINT A TO POINT Z IN THE PROCESS. SO, THINKING ABOUT MARKETING MATERIALS SHOULD BE ACCESSIBLE. OF COURSE, THE WINDOW TO ANY BUSINESS IS AN ORGANIZATION’S WEBSITE. DIGITAL EQUITY IN THE BLIND COMMUNITY IS SOMETHING THAT HAS BEEN ADVOCATED FOR FOR DECADES NOW. BUT, AS THE CHAIRWOMAN MENTIONED IN HER OPENING REMARKS, ACCESSIBLE DESIGN IS GOOD DESIGN. SO, BY CREATING AN ACCESSIBLE WEBSITE, IT ALLOWS US NOT JUST TO PROVIDE BETTER INFORMATION FOR THE BLIND AND LOW VISION COMMUNITY, BUT IT CAN HELP ANYBODY WHO MAY HAVE DIFFICULTY USING A MOUSE, A VARIETY OF DIFFERENT MOBILITY OR COGNITIVE DISABILITIES. SO, WE DON’T STOP. THE PURSUIT OF ACCESSIBILITY CONTINUES. WE HAVE NOT MET OUR LAST PATIENT. WE LEARN FROM EACH PATIENT. WE RECENTLY GOT DONE WITH A GREAT DEAL OF WORK WITH PATIENTS WITH DUAL SENSORY LOSS WITHIN THE DEAFBLIND COMMUNITY, AND UNDERSTANDING ABOUT THE MASTED — THE BEST METHOD TO MUNICH A TO THOSE INDIVIDUALS. AGAIN, WE HAVE NOT MET OUR LAST PATIENT. WE CONTINUALLY LEARN AND ASK QUESTIONS. HOW CAN WE IMPROVE? HOW CAN WE ALLEVIATE THESE CHALLENGES AND BURDENS? WE ARE ALWAYS LOOKING TO COLLABORATE AND PARTNER WITH OTHER GROUPS, ORGANIZATIONS, AND COMPANIES THAT DEVELOP TECHNOLOGIES TO HELP PROVIDE A MORE INCLUSIVE EXPERIENCE, ESPECIALLY AS IT PERTAINS TO HEALTH CARE. SO IN THE END, WE ARE HONORED TO RECEIVE THIS AWARD, BUT THE PURSUIT OF ACCESSIBILITY AND INCLUSION IS ONGOING AND NEVER-ENDING, AND WE ARE SO GRATEFUL TO COMPANIES LIKE APPLE , WHO CONTINUE TO INNOVATE AND DEVELOP NEW PRODUCTS AND SERVICES TO HELP OUR PATIENTS. WITH THAT, I SAY THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

ED: THANK YOU, DR. COHEN, AND THANK YOU FOR THE REMINDER THAT THE WORK IS NOT DONE AND THERE IS STILL MUCH TO ACHIEVE ACROSS THIS SPACE. AGAIN, CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL OF OUR 2020 ONE FCC AWARDS FOR ADVANCEMENT INACCESSIBILITY WINNERS, COMMUNICATION SERVICE FOR THE DEAF, APPLE, AND ACCESSIBLE PHARMACY SERVICES FOR THE BLIND. BEFORE WE SIGN OFF, I WOULD LIKE TO THANK A NUMBER OF PEOPLE WHO WORKED TIRELESSLY TO MAKE THESE AWARDS A REALITY. FIRST, I WOULD LIKE TO THANK OUR CHAIRWOMAN, JESSICA ROSENWORCEL, FOR HER ONGOING LEADERSHIP ON DISABILITY MATTERS, AND FOR DELIVERING OUR KEYNOTE ADDRESS. MY FELLOW MEMBERS OF THE JUDGING PANEL, INCLUDING DIANE BERNSTEIN AND GERARD WILLIAMS. I WOULD ALSO LIKE TO THANK THE ORGANIZING COMMITTEE WHO ARE PART OF THE CONSUMER GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS BUREAU’S CONSUMER AFFAIRS AND OUTREACH DIVISION. CHANTEL VIRGIL, D’ANDREA WILSON, KAYLA HERNANDEZ, GERARD WILLIAMS, AND SHERRY DAWSON. AND FINALLY, I WOULD LIKE TO THANK EVERYONE FOR TUNING INTO TODAY’S VIRTUAL AWARD CEREMONY. WITH THAT, HAVE A GREAT REST OF YOUR DAY.

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