BCLA Pre-Conference Notes: Why Accessible Library Service Matters in Public Libraries

Disability Awareness Training for Library Staff Summary

Margarete Wiedemann, North Vancouver City Public Library

  • last Canadian census: 1 in 7 Canadians live with a disability
  • public libraries are generally accessible to a degree
  • survey findings: what is helpful: online catalogue, home delivery, plain language,
  • barriers: physical envionrment, time on computer, standing in line, crowded seating, cognitive demands, asking for help and feeling like taking too much time, confusing signage, patronize/impatient/insensitive staff
  • solutions to barriers example: baskets with wheels, walkers for in-library use
  • some of the most difficult barriers with disabilities is people’s attitudes: need to think about what you say and write; person first language
  • Social-Ecological Model of Disability: disability is a difference, arises from interactions between individual and society, and remedy is a change in interactions and context
  • paradigm shift to full citizens with human rights, integrated, included, partipants.
  • communication tips: speak directly and clearly, make eye contact at eye level, show respect and patience, show and tell or walk and talk, ask for help if you are having difficulty understanding
  • universal design: recognize that there is a large diversity, and changes that benefit all users; fix the environment (not the individual)
  • universal design will cover 80+% of users, and cover the rest using inclusive design and individual accommodations
  • library staff can make a difference
  • just make the connetiion and offer what you have
  • an inclusive library begins with you

survey results: AIG section of the BCLA website

NNELS

  • print disability: anyone that cannot read a book in “traditional” print format is considered print disabled
  • tour of the website
  • notes on formats: DAISY have MP3 inside of them, common format, but not one everyone is familiar with
  • resources: nnels.ca/libraries
  • possible engagement: books for student that are non-curriculum material
  • collections highlight awards and other collections including digitized InterLINK reels of BC audiobooks, Truth and Reconciliation (which is public domain and downloadable by anyone)

Discussions

  • devices: bone induction earphones, raspberry pi, slate and stylus, mp3 audio
  • copyright act allows format shifting for print disabled patrons regardless of copyright of the original version

Mike Edwards – Dyslexic Reader

  • made several attempts at universities
  • fear of feeling stupid, etc.
  • post secondary requires psychological examination: something that you had to prove, that you’re disabled
  • what works: have CNIB worker who keeps feeding books on CD
  • accommodations: colour codes text, TextAloud
  • opportunity for outreach: prisons, large percentage of dyslexics

Published by

Cynthia

A librarian learning the ways of technology, accessibility, metadata, and people

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