Irish Firm Creates Navigation App For Visually Impaired
John Ryan, founder and director of Point the Way, talks about accessibility on smartphones and its new app for the visually impaired, LookAround.
From siliconrepublic.com, June 14, 2011
European Parliament Votes Its Support For Binding “Books Without Borders” Treaty
Millions of blind EU citizens face a “book famine” in which only a few per cent of books are converted to “accessible formats” they can read such as braille, large print or audio. EBU has campaigned for some years for an international treaty to help us get better access to books. However, the EU Council and Commission have consistently opposed this.
From www.euroblind.org, June 13, 2011
Just In: WHO World Report On Disability
About 15% of the world's population lives with some form of disability, of whom 2-4% experience significant difficulties in functioning. The global disability prevalence is higher than previous WHO estimates, which date from the 1970s and suggested a figure of around 10%. This global estimate for disability is on the rise due to population ageing and the rapid spread of chronic diseases, as well as improvements in the methodologies used to measure disability.
From www.who.int, June 10, 2011
Nearly 1 In 7 People On Earth Is Disabled, Survey Finds
More than 1 billion people in the world are living with some sort of disability, according to a new international survey. That's about 15 percent of the world's population, or nearly one of every 7 people. The numbers come from a joint effort by the World Health Organization and the World Bank. The last time anyone tried to figure out the prevalence of disabilities was back in the 1970s, when WHO figured it was about 10 percent. The current report suggests the 15 percent estimate will grow as the world's population ages.
From npr.org, June 10, 2011
UN Declares Internet Access A Human Right
As evidenced by the Facebook Revolutions and ensuing Middle East turmoil, the Internet is a powerful tool and one capable of change. Of course, its eliminating citizen use of the Web under oppressive regimes has also yielded consequences. Perhaps inspired by these effects, the UN has declared the Internet a human right. A recent report titled “Report of the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression” declares that Internet access falls under freedom of expression.
From www.digitaltrends.com, June 10, 2011
USA: New Broadway Theatre Accessibility Initiative
A new partnership between Alliance for Inclusion in the Arts and arts access provider G-PASS means visitors to New York will have the opportunity to enjoy more Broadway shows. The Broadway Accessibility/Audience Expansion Initiative enables theatre-goers to view captions or listen to audio description at every performance of designated shows.
From mediaaccess.org, June 09, 2011
CRTC Releases Report On Mobile Handset Accessibility
The CRTC commissioned the study, titled “Mobile Wireless Handset Accessibility Assessment,” which found mixed results for the state of accessibility for mobile wireless handsets in late-2010. The report said there are effective accessibility features for some people with disabilities but that there are also substantial accessibility gaps for others.
From thewirereport.ca/, June 09, 2011
India: A Special Sports Contingent Carries Country's Gold Medal Hopes in The Olympics
A gold medal won in the Olympics triggers nationwide celebration. Yet, the fact that India has won over 70 gold medals in another version of the Olympics is a feat that has largely escaped our notice. The Special Olympics, held in summer and winter editions, just as the Olympic Games, is for persons with intellectual disabilities (those with an Intelligence Quotient below 80). The SO World Summer Games (WSG) will be held in Athens, Greece, from June 25 to July 4 2011.
From thehindu.com, June 09, 2011
South Australia Budget 2011 For Disabled Population Disappoints
An allocation of $37.5 million will be spent over the next four years on South Australians living with a disability and also their carers with support aimed to assist with accommodation, community access and respite service for carers.
From www.abc.net.au/, June 08, 2011
Australia: Transport Review of Disability Access
The first five year statutory review of accessibility standards for people with disability using public transport has found significant changes during the period but recommended more for the future. Commissioned by the Department of Infrastructure and Transport and conducted by a consulting firm, the report included 15 recommendations to improve accessibility of public transport and addressed issues such as mobility aids; school buses; taxis; air travel; transport in rural and regional areas; and the collection and analysis of data.
From psnews.com, June 08, 2011