Actionable guidance on serving patrons with disabilities
For Immediate Release
ALA Publishing & Media
American Library Association
CHICAGO — Ensuring accessibility is more important than ever; however, answering questions of what needs to be done and why to make a library accessible can be an uncomfortable and daunting hurdle to true inclusion. “Serving Patrons with Disabilities: Perspectives and Insights from People with Disabilities,” published by ALA Editions, is a safe, nonjudgmental tool for overcoming this awkwardness, offering readers practical, to-the-point information and guidance that complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Editor Kodi Laskin showcases real-world stories and viewpoints that illustrate ways to provide excellent customer service and a safe environment to all patrons regardless of ability. Readers will learn about:
- bridging the gap between people with disabilities and those without, through empathy, patience, and understanding;
- techniques for training staff and overcoming discomfort;
- making your library accessible for people with mobility issues;
- how to interact with and assist a person with limited sight or hearing;
- guidance for interacting with a service animal handler;
- advice on library programming for people with learning differences; and
- best practices for effective service to patrons who use a speech assistance device.
Laskin, a graduate of Rollins College, has used her unique position as both a library assistant and a service animal handler to develop a training geared for libraries and businesses to learn about laws regarding service animals and their place in society. It is available through SEFLIN and NEFLIN. Laskin and her service animal, Piper, can still be found frequenting any and all libraries they come across.
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