Friday, March 10, 2017

Co-workers learn sign language

Kamal Nasser was born in Kuwait. As a young man, he worked at a museum in Jordan, carefully handling 4,000 year old artifacts. After marrying in 2010, he moved to Columbus, Ohio, in 2013 and worked in warehouses for FedEx and Abercrombie & Fitch. He currently works in the AT&T warehouse in Hilliard. Did I forget to mention he has been deaf since birth? AT&T warehouse manager Jason McGonigle admits "I had never worked with a deaf person, so I didn't know what to expect."

                                                                                                                Eric Albrecht / Dispatch
At first, Nasser and his co-workers communicated by erasable white board, and with hand gestures, but McGonigle wanted to communicate with Nasser directly, so he enrolled in an American Sign Language class offered by the Columbus Speech & Hearing Center. Several other warehouse workers also took the course. A specialist at the Speech & Hearing Center says, "This employer has gone way over the top.  A lot of times people will learn a few signs, but this company has done more than anyone has ever done."

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