Library Services for People with Disabilities Policy Approved

Contact: Cathleen Bourdon


ALA News Release

For Immediate Release

February 2001

Library Services for People with Disabilities Policy Approved

American Library Association (ALA) Council unanimously approved the
"Library Services for People with Disabilities Policy" on January 16, 2001, during the ALA Midwinter meeting in Washington, D.C.

The policy was written by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Assembly, a representational group administered by the Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies (ASCLA), a division of the ALA.

"According to a survey conducted by the U.S. Bureau of the Census in 1994, 54 million Americans have disabilities, and about half that number (26 million) have severe disabilities," stated Rhea Rubin, past chair of the ADA Assembly. "Libraries play a catalytic role in the lives of people with disabilities by facilitating their full participation in society. This new policy will help libraries improve services for people with disabilities in their communities."

The policy covers nine areas: scope of disability law; library services; facilities; collections; assistive technology; employment; library education, training and professional development; ALA conferences; and ALA publications and communications.