Library celebrates services for people with disabilities




SaltWire Network


Western Counties Regional Library is celebrating its services available to people with disabilities in the first week of December. The event ties into International Day of People with Disabilities on Saturday, Dec. 3. “This is a week where we want to highlight services that we offer and showcase materials by, for, and about people with disabilities,” says Lydia Hunsberger, manager of collections and digital services for the library. Some of the services and items the library offers include large print books, audiobooks and eBooks, portable DAISY talking book players Access to Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA) and National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS), autism fidget and sensory tool kits, borrow-by-mail and staff-assisted selection, videos and DVDs with descriptive text, captioned videos and DVDs. Many of these items will be part of displays at library branches during the celebration. The library also has accessible computer workstations at seven of its branches. These stations each have a 27-inch full HD monitor, Adesso four-times large print keyboard, and a Kensington trackball mouse. Library staff members are available to help people find books or audiobooks, Hunsberger says. This can be a one-time service or ongoing for people who prefer to have staff supply them with favourite authors and titles in preferred formats. Available through the library, CELA and NNELS offer downloadable audio and electronic books (DAISY, MP3, and e-text formats), described video, and braille to people with print disabilities. People can sign up to download books to their own devices or computers or have items delivered directly to their home or library. “We want this celebration to raise awareness of the many services available for free at their public library,” Hunsberger says.