New Accessible Format Library Collection Launches

Nova Scotians with print disabilities, who are unable to read print materials, will now have access to a collection of downloadable audiobooks through the public libraries.

The Nova Scotia Provincial Library, in partnership with the National Network for Equitable Library Service, launched access to the collection today, Oct 31. It contains more than 12,500 titles.

The National Network for Equitable Library Service is predominantly an audio-on-demand collection, built around standard public library collections. It features free resources, which can be used on computers, tablets, smartphones, burned to CD and DAISY readers, a format specifically designed for use by people with print disabilities. Materials are mostly in DAISY, MP3 and eBraille formats.

Other provinces and territories offering this service include British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Nunavut and the Northwest Territories.

“We are delighted to be able to offer access to this new collection of downloadable audiobooks to our library customers who may have difficulties using traditional print formats,” said Heather MacKenzie, chair, Nova Scotia Regional Libraries Universal Library Access Working Group. “After completing a simple registration process, people will be able to access the service using their regular library barcode number and PIN.”

About 10 per cent of Canadians have a print disability. In Nova Scotia, this translates to over 93,000 people. It is estimated that less than five per cent of published material is available in accessible formats.

“Service equity is a central value for public libraries,” said Jennifer Evans, director, Nova Scotia Provincial Library. “Providing access to an alternate format collection via the National Network for Equitable Library Services is an important step in increasing service equity for library users with print disabilities.”

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Source: Release

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