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By virtue of the authority vested by the Constitution of Virginia in the Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, there is hereby officially recognized:

Better Hearing and Speech Month

WHEREAS, approximately 15% of adults aged 18 and older report some trouble hearing, increasing to at least 33% of adults aged 65-74; and an estimated 17 million adults experience difficulty speaking; and

WHEREAS, about 28.8 million U.S. adults could benefit from the use of hearing aids and/or assistive technology, but less than 30% of them have ever used hearing aids, and many people with difficulty speaking do not seek treatment; and

WHEREAS, adults with hearing loss or speaking difficulties can face barriers to effective communication; and

WHEREAS, hearing loss prevention can protect residual hearing and hearing loss can be detected through hearing screenings, and treatment is available to improve hearing and speech; and

WHEREAS, Better Hearing and Speech Month was first recognized by President Ronald Reagan on May 21, 1986; and

WHEREAS, the theme of Better Hearing and Speech Month 2023 is “Building a Strong Foundation” which can be achieved with collaborative partnerships among providers; and

WHEREAS, despite communication challenges, individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing, or who have difficulty speaking are successful and productive citizens who contribute to the economic well-being and social fabric of Virginia; and

WHEREAS, the Virginia Department for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing is raising awareness about those who experience challenges speaking or hearing and about available treatment options, assistive technology, and use of accommodations that can improve quality of life which benefits the Commonwealth;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Glenn Youngkin, do hereby recognize May 2023, as BETTER HEARING AND SPEECH MONTH in the COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of our citizens.