New iBooks® Textbook Helps Visually Impaired Visit the Stars Through Touch, Sound

SAS, Space Telescope Science Institute Inspire Passion for Science in Students CARY, NC–(Marketwired – September 04, 2014)

A free, multitouch iBooks Textbook for iPad® is now available to inspire students of all abilities to pursue futures in science. Reach for the Stars: Touch, Look, Listen, Learn (opens in new window/tab) incorporates new, assistive technologies so children with visual disabilities, too, can experience striking deep-space images like never before.

Free for download from Apple’s iBookstore(SM), Reach for the Stars (opens in new window/tab) was created for iPad by analytics provider SAS and the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI).

For blind bus riders, a new app boosts independence

By Madeline Ken
NEW YORK, Tuesday, September 2, 2014

The app, called StopInfo, is integrated into a popular existing app called OneBusAway that gives real time information on the location of city buses.

StopInfo adds details that help blind riders find the bus stop.

“When a user wants detailed information about a transit stop, he or she touches a button and the system displays details, such as where the stop is in relation to street intersections, whether there is a bench and trash can, what the shape of the sign pole is . . . This information can be read out loud for blind users of the phone, using VoiceOver mode,” explained Alan Borning in email to Reuters Health.

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Local Doctor Finder: Search by Disability

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Assistive Technology for Students with Disabilities

Auckland Disability Community Unite on First Feedback to UN

August 31, 2014 By aqureshi

NEW ZEALAND: A group of 25 Disabled People’s Organizations, interest groups and service providers, along with countless disabled people and family members have released their first assessment on New Zealand’s disability rights record to the United Nations. And the verdict is; it’s time to turn agreements into action.

The 52 page shadow report, which was made public by the United Nations today, is disabled Aucklander’s first official opportunity to update the UN Committee on the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) on how well government is progressing on the commitments it signed up to in 2008.

KNFB Reader: Access to Print Text on the Go for Blind and Visually Impaired

Posted August 29, 2014
Fast, Accurate, Efficient

The wait is finally over. The highly anticipated KNFB Reader iOS app that provides access to print text on the go, was presented at the 74th Annual Convention of the National Federation of the Blind to enthusiastic cheers and applause.

KNFB Reader

Introducing the KNFB Reader iOS

Elections Canada Announces Accessibility Improvements

GUELPH, Ontario, Thursday August 28, 2014

As part of Elections Canada’s commitment to accessibility to all Canadian voters, Elections Canada and Matthew Wozenilek, a Guelph accessibility advocate,
are pleased to announce that in the next federal election all polling sites in Canada will feature either power assisted door openers or dedicated staff to assist door openings.

“We are building on our previous commitments with the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal and the Hughes case to ensure that all Canadians can access our voting
sites in a barrier-free manner,” says Chief Electoral Officer of Canada, Marc Mayrand. “This will be a great step forward for all persons with disabilities in Canada,” added Mr. Wozenilek.

Purple Communications Introduces Next-Generation SmartVP 2.0 Videophone

Deaf Telecommunications Company Announces the Relaunch of SmartVP 2.0, Supported by a New, State-of-the-Art Video Platform for the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing

ROCKLIN, CA–(Marketwired – Aug 26, 2014)

Purple Communications, Inc. today announced the availability of the SmartVP 2.0 videophone specifically designed for deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals. The next generation of SmartVP features upgraded hardware and software, supported by new and powerful video platform to provide a seamless communication experience.

Initially launched in 2013, SmartVP is an Android-based HD videophone that connects to a television, allowing deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals to communicate with each other and with people who don’t know sign language through the use of Video Relay Service (VRS).

Cloud Computing: Potential, Pitfalls for People with Disabilities

New research argues that cloud can be an important platform for increasing the independence of people with disabilities but industry and government need a conscious approach to accessibility Rohan Pearce (Computerworld) on 22 August, 2014 08:00

Cloud computing can help empower people with disabilities by offering increased independence and opportunities to participate in the workforce, according to a new report.

However, without a conscious approach to building services that support accessibility standards, vendors and IT departments risk limiting people’s ability to use software-as-a-service applications and other cloud services.

The report, produced by Media Access Australia and sponsored by the Australian Web Industry Association, was released this morning.

Baltimore Required to Improve Hiring Policies and Practices to Comply with Disabilities Act

City settles discrimination complaint for $65,000

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake’s administration settled a discrimination complaint brought by the U.S. Department of Justice, agreeing to ensure that hiring follows rules that forbid asking most job candidates to take medical exams.

The Justice Department had accused the city of violating the Americans with Disabilities Act after the Fire Department refused to hire a candidate for a dispatcher position when a medical exam revealed that she had a disability.

The city agreed to pay the woman $65,000 and to ensure its hiring policies and practices follow the law, according to a consent decree filed with a complaint in U.S. District Court on Wednesday.