Library Inclusion for Everyone

Overview

This project was funded through a grant from the Connecticut Department of Social Services, Tech Act Project to increase access for persons with disabilities to all Connecticut libraries. The A.J. Pappanikou Center for Excellence on Developmental Disabilities collaborated with the Connecticut State Library System and the Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities for this project. The purpose to this project was to improve the accessibility of Connecticut libraries for people with disabilities through the provision of information and technical assistance to librarians. The project focused on (a) adequate accessible parking near entrances, (b) thirty-six inch aisles between book stacks and tables, (c) accessible workstations and desk areas, (d) workshops/trainings in accessible locations, and (e) the provision of services, such as sign language interpretation.

Accomplishments

  • The Connecticut Library Accessibility Survey Tool was developed to use in identifying needed improvements for library accessibility in Connecticut and is available for dissemination.
  • Project staff (a) trained library staff to make their building and programs accessible for persons with disabilities, (b) surveyed library accessibility, including the identification of physical and programmatic barriers, (c) suggested solutions to improve the accessibility for everyone who uses the library, (d) offered information and technical assistance on the use of assistive technology devices and services, and (e) provided resources and assistance in understanding federal and state laws governing accessibility requirements.
  • Various CT libraries participated in this project and in doing so addressed their individual needs regarding accessibility for persons with disabilities.
  • Librarians were educated on alternative formats, such as magnification systems, Braille, large-print text, text-to-speech systems, and alternate computer access systems and workstations.
  • A final data report was completed and disseminated.

Publications and Resources