USA: Partnership to Bring Bookshare to People with Print Disabilities
Benetech, provider of Bookshare, is proud to announce a new partnership with Georgia Libraries for Accessible Statewide Services (GLASS), making over 425,000 accessible ebooks available for free to patrons who cannot read printed books due to blindness, low vision, dyslexia, and other print disabilities. GLASS is the statewide network of talking book centers that provides library services for the blind and others whose physical abilities require the use of books and magazines in digital audio formats or in braille.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2016/06/29/partnership-to-bring-bookshare-to-people-with-print-disabilities/, July 01, 2016
UAE: Sharjah Teachers Build Syllabus in Electronic Sign Language
The students at Al Amal School for the Deaf have easy access to course material because teachers have created an electronic library of the curriculum in sign language. The sign language content covers subjects including Arabic, physics, chemistry and some topics in geography and history for several grades from middle to high school. There are plans to share this bank with other deaf schools in the region.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2016/06/29/sharjah-teachers-build-syllabus-in-electronic-sign-language/, July 01, 2016
Canada: Ontario Providing More Support for Children with Autism
Ontario is providing more support for children and youth with autism, including an accelerated implementation of the new Ontario Autism Program. The new program will provide all children, regardless of age, with more flexible services at a level of intensity that meets each child’s individual needs, significantly reduce wait times for service, and increase the number of treatment spaces available to serve more children and accommodate the rising prevalence in autism diagnoses.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2016/06/29/ontario-providing-more-supports-for-children-with-autism/, July 01, 2016
USA: UNESCO Promotes Universal Access to Digital Information for Persons with Disabilities
On 15 June 2016, UNESCO, in collaboration with UNDESA and OHCHR organized a side event entitled “Universal Access to Information using ICTs with Disabilities: Digital Empowerment for Inclusive Development” during the ninth session of the Conference of States to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (COSP9) at United Nations Headquarters in New York.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2016/06/27/unesco-promotes-universal-access-to-digital-information-for-persons-with-disabilities/, June 27, 2016
Legislation Will Improve Access to Copyrighted Materials for Canadians with Vision Disabilities
Canadians who are blind or have low vision will have better access to books and other copyrighted materials. The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, today announced that the Act to Amend the Copyright Act (access to copyrighted works or other subject-matter for persons with perceptual disabilities) has received royal assent. The amendments to the Copyright Act enable Canada to be among the first countries in the world to accede to the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, or low vision or Otherwise Print Disabled.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2016/06/25/legislation-will-improve-access-to-copyrighted-materials-for-canadians-vision-with-disabilities/, June 27, 2016
Dublin Airport Wins European Accessibility Award
Dublin Airport has won a major European award for the way in which it deals with passengers with disabilities. Dublin Airport won the inaugural Accessible Airport Award at ACI EUROPE’s Best Airport Awards in Athens last night. Separately Dublin Airport was also short-listed in the best large airport category, which was won by Heathrow Airport.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2016/06/23/dublin-airport-wins-european-accessibility-award/, June 27, 2016
USA: Aging in Place: How Communities are Retrofitting Spaces and Infrastructure for Senior Citizens
I suspect that most people are reluctant to think about changing where and how they live as long as they are managing well at the moment. Lisa Selin Davis reports in AARP magazine that “almost 90 percent of Americans 65 or older plan to stay in their homes as they age.” Yet for many, the design of their homes and communities does not suit older adults who lack the mobility, agility and swiftness of the young. Throughout the country, communities are being retrofitted to accommodate the tsunami of elders expected to live there as baby boomers age.
From http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2016/05/02/aging-in-place/?smid=tw-share&_r=0, June 14, 2016
IBM: Accessibility Should Be Built-In from the Beginning
A fair amount of my day is spent fighting with technology that others use easily. I suffer from Retinitis Pigmentosa, a condition that leads to blindness. Currently, I can only make out shapes and objects and need altered colors to see what’s on my screen. With day-to-day activities, I often find myself “working around” menial tasks. For example, with email it is often hard to tell which of my messages include attachments. Or, when information on a website is not organized in the right order and flow especially when using a screen reader, or the “click here” button is in the wrong color. It’s frustrating and I’m not short of examples. Designing and developing apps, solutions and services with accessibility built-in from the beginning ensures that organizations better connect with customers and create a better overall user experience for everyone.
From http://ageandability.com/2016/06/13/accidental-accessibility/?platform=hootsuite, June 14, 2016
Microsoft: Designing Gaming for Everyone
Consider closed captioning. Originally created for people with hearing loss, it is now used by all sorts of people to consume video in shared environments. Think about the TV with closed captioning at the gym or watching a social media video with a friend while at a crowded bar. This solution for one type of ability improved everyone’s options across a variety of environments. And if necessity is the mother of invention, then intentionally designing for people with diverse needs and abilities is what nurtures ongoing innovation.
From https://news.microsoft.com/features/designing-gaming-for-everyone/?platform=hootsuite#sm.000wg2k8x1154cwjxa92f8a40duyd, June 14, 2016
USA: New York City Enacts Accessibility Standards for Government Web Sites
NYC recently passed a law requiring that its government agency web sites meet accessibility standards. Other state and local governments may follow NYC’s lead and enact accessibility standards for government agencies, contractors and even public accommodations in the absence of regulations from DOJ. Serving a population of over 8 million, the New York City government includes more than 120 agencies staffed by approximately 325,000 employees. This legislation will have an impact on City agencies, and access for persons with disabilities to those institutions.
From http://www.adatitleiii.com/2016/04/new-york-city-enacts-accessibility-standards-for-government-websites/, June 14, 2016