See this picture with my wife Shirley and my daughter with the Deaf baby in the stroller similar to what happened to us at St Louis EHDI 2012

My wife, Shirley Frelich Egbert and I each both had experienced an embarrassing and humiliating experience during the St Louis EHDI 2012 Conference in the exhibition booth area by Karl White, the director/coordinator of the Early Hearing Detection Intervention (EHDI) conference and the security guards under the direction of Karl White.
I will start with my humiliating and embarrassing experience first before we learn what happened to my wife’s humiliating experience.
I was sitting at the Deaf Bilingual Coalition booth talking with some people visiting our booth and the security guard tapped me on the shoulder and pointed to some people that did not have the EHDI badge outside of the exhibit area and motioned me to go over to this area so the people could talk to me. As I walked over to meet the people, the security guard walked along with me and stood next to me during the time the people were talking to me. It seemed that everything was normal and the security guard acted as if everything was acceptable.
Then all sudden, Karl White rushed up to me in an angry attitude and told me that I wasn’t allowed to talk to these people because they did not have the EHDI badge and that my badge and booth will be thrown out of the exhibit event. I was shocked by his attitude and at the same time became very embarrassed and humiliated by Karl White’s patronizing me in front of the exhibitors and many EHDI attendees in the area.
I told Karl White that the security guard told me to come over to this area that was not part of the exhibit area and I was following the assumed normal procedure by the security guard.
I strongly believe that I was set up by the security guard and Karl White to make me appear disruptive.

My wife, Shirley, came to the EHDI conference to take care of our daughter, Stella Egbert’s six-month old Deaf baby. Our daughter, an early childhood education and elementary principal from Texas School for the Deaf at Austin, Texas came to the conference as a co-speaker. When my wife brought her son down to meet her, she was instead humiliated and embarrassed. She had her grandson in the stroller in the hallway away from the exhibit area, and was confronted by the security guard, telling her to leave the building. My wife was puzzled because there were other individuals in the hallway without badges as well. She was rushed to leave, even when she told the security guard that she needed to put a coat on the baby, but the security guard kept telling her to exit, pushed the button of the handicapped doors, and told her to leave while she rushed putting on the baby’s coat. My wife felt targeted because she was a deaf individual and she felt humiliated to have been rushed out of the building with a baby.
If we substitute the word, Deaf with the word Black, This is pure racism. My wife was targeted because she was a deaf person in the hallway with the other hearing people in the area that were not harassed. This confrontation was as oppressive as racism.
If this whole incident was toward Black people instead of Deaf people like myself and my wife, there would definitely be a lawsuit which we are considering.
Deaf people have and should be allowed to have dignity and we were treated as if we can be treated the way we were by Karl White and the security guards under his order.

It is sad that it had happened.

John F. Egbert

  1. deaf says:

    how horrible. I learned a long time ago that security guards and officers will lie to you. they will not let you know such and such is allowed or not allowed even though they know the rules themselves. they will not prevent you from getting in trouble. I am guessing Karl is after money and power (of medicine of the ear and speech) which is why he picky about badges.

  2. johnfegbert says:

    To deaf,
    Actually, Karl did not want any Deaf that did not pay $275 to be part of EHDI in the EHDI area at the hotel and my wife, Shirley, is the guest of the hotel and have every right to be in the hotel away from the area of the EHDI established boundary area but nonetheless, my wife was harassed because she was Deaf.

  3. deaf says:

    but hearing people, he does not mind?

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