Thursday, June 25, 2020

An Open Letter from Tobii-Dynavox NA President

Hey Tek-ninjas! This open letter is a part of why I love working for Tobii-Dynavox.  This sentiment and the action behind it informs so much of the culture at Tobii-Dynavox both nationally and internationally. It comes from the top down. 

I am Tara Rudnicki, President of North American Market for Tobii Dynavox as well as President of the Assistive Technology Industry Association, ATIA. 

Over the last several months, and especially during the past few weeks, we at Tobii Dynavox have received a surge of important comments and feedback about the way we portray gender and ethnicity, most particular the Black/African American people in our products and services and in our overall communication. We hear these strong messages and we take them very seriously. We do not want to remain passive in an environment of systemic racism of any kind and we agree wholeheartedly that we MUST act.   

We want to make changes to a lot of things we do at Tobii Dynavox. This effort will require time and hard continuous work. However, we have already started to take action. Over the last week we have updated many of our PCS symbols to reflect ethnicity and genders. We will release the next versions of Boardmaker and Snap Core First with the functionality of editable skin tone color and hair variations. We are reviewing our communication channels to better reflect diversity. We are teaming with many others in the industry to bring various voices that are reflective of all of our communities. 

This is just the beginning.  As we work to address these important issues, we want to hear more from you. We want to get feedback from all who use our products and services, and anyone who is part of our community, with ideas and suggestion on how we can improve in all aspects of our business. You can be part of the solution and reshaping the industry to reflect everyone we are so fortunate to support by sharing your comments. We want to hear you. 
Reach out to myself at 508-254-2782 , contact our customer service team at 1-800-588-4548 or simply respond to this message and offer your thoughts in the comments below.  Getting this right will take time, sensitivity, and dedication, but if we work together as a community, we will make it happen.

Happy therapy!

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