For many years, I was focused on volunteer work related to public education about stuttering, a speech condition that I had the good fortune to successfully deal with, many years ago – in July 1987, to be exact, when I attended a three-week speech clinic in Edmonton.
The three weeks that I spent in Edmonton were followed up with several years of focused, disciplined, daily practice aimed at consolidation and maintenance of my newly-aquired fluency skills.
In the past 10 or 15 years, I have to a large extent left volunteer work on behalf of people who stutter behind.
Yet, every once in a while, a phrase runs through my head.
That phrase is: “Those of Us Who Stutter.”
That phrase will stay with me forever.
I often used that phrase in my media relations work, on behalf of people who stutter, and in discussions – over many, many years – with other people who stutter.
From time to time, I’m still involved with such discussions.
Radio interview with CSA member Daniele Rossi
Recently, I received a message from Daniele Rossi, who as a volunteer remains active with the Canadian Stuttering Association (CSA).
He shared some information about an upcoming radio interview.
On Nov. 27, 2017, Jaan Pill wrote:
I received your email about: (Public outreach) Radio interview on CJAM.
It’s great that you have the opportunity to take part in this interview. You will do a great job.
By way of offering some ideas for reflection, as you prepare for the interview, below is the outcome of an interview I did with Jane Taber of the Globe and Mail for a piece entitled “Stuttering 101” published on Dec. 9, 2010 as the following link notes:
DECEMBER 9, 2010
Stuttering etiquette: Maintain eye contact with a stutterer when he or she is stuck on a word, says Canadian Stuttering Association co-founder Jaan Pill. Looking away, he says, “communicates embarrassment” and telegraphs that “the person speaking is not entirely part of the human race.” Let the person finish; do not try to finish the sentence yourself.
Causes: Stuttering is a neurological disorder; it is not psychological.
337,000: The number of people who stutter in Canada.
[Note from Jaan: The number is higher now; it’s one percent of whatever the population of Canada is now.]
One in 20: The proportion of people who stutter in childhood when learning to speak; the majority of them are boys. Most outgrow it, leaving one in 100 adults as stutterers.
Famous stutterers: King George VI, Aesop, Charles Darwin, Winston Churchill, Rowan Atkinson (Mr. Bean), Marilyn Monroe.