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Libraries and Accessibility: Home

Resources on accessibility, the ADA, and services to persons with disabilities.

What is a disability?

As described by the Connecticut Fair Employment Practices Act, a disability may be physical, developmental, emotional or learning related. It is an impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, which are functions that are important to most people’s daily lives. Examples of major life activities are breathing, walking, talking, hearing, seeing, sleeping, caring for one’s self, performing manual tasks, and working.

Resources

Libraries especially need to expand staff awareness and sensitivity to a more diverse group of library users through training. These resources provide guidance on how to interact with persons with disabilities and how to create appropriate services.

Training for Library Staff:

Sign Language Interpreters:

For sign language interpreters, call 2-1-1, or visit www.211ct.org and search for “Sign Language Interpretation.” TTY: 800-671-0737. The Department of Rehabilitation Services (DORS) will continue to monitor and post a statewide Interpreter Registry. All sign language interpreters working for compensation in Connecticut must satisfy the mandates of established law CT General Statute Sec. 46a-33a, including annual registration with DORS and submission of documented credentials, including certification by a nationally recognized board.

Live captioning of events:

In Connecticut, live real-time captioning is available for free through Sprint Relay with at least 48 hours notice. Either the program planner or participant can request the service.

Accessible Print Materials:

Accessible Language:

Developing Services for Patrons with Disabilities:

These state agencies and nonprofits provide services for persons with disabilities and can advise libraries on how to adapt services and programs to include all patrons:

  • Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped in Connecticut is a statewide service that helps anyone with a print disability (those "unable to read conventional print because of a visual or physical disability").
  • Disability Rights Connecticut is an independent, nonprofit organization established as the successor entity to Connecticut’s Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities. DRCT works to improve the quality of life for individuals with disabilities, their families and the disability community.
  • The Connecticut Department of Aging and Disability Services manages the state's Bureau of Disability Determination Services, Bureau of Education and Services for the Blind, Bureau of Rehabilitation Services, State Unit on Aging, and other bureaus and departments.
  • Connecticut Family Support Network (CTFSN) exists to help families raising children with disabilities and special health care needs.
  • New England ADA Center (Boston) provides "information, guidance, and training on the Americans with Disabilities Act, Section 508, and accessible information technology to individuals living in New England."
  • Americans with Disabilities Act Coalition of Connecticut (ADACC) promotes ADA compliance. The group is devoted to educating individuals with disabilities, businesses, and governmental entities about the ADA.
  • The Center for Disability Rights "advocates for people with disabilities and their issues on a local, state-wide, and national level. We also provide services to individuals and their families, as well as technical assistance and community education to businesses, government, and members of the community."
  • There are several Centers for Independent Living throughout the state that help with accessibility issues.
  • The Connecticut Association of the Deaf (CAD) promotes, protects, and preserves the rights and quality of life of Deaf and Hard of Hearing citizens of Connecticut.

Books on Services to Patrons

These books are available from the library service centers through our catalog:

Hey, I know of a resource you should add to this page!

If you know of a great resource that should be included in the Libraries and Accessibility pages, please contact Maria Bernier, Maria.Bernier@ct.gov.

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