Be empowered: Legislation empowering you to make information accessible
Legislation is prominent all around the world to empower the provision of accessible information to people with visual impairments and dyslexia. Here are a few examples:
Legislation in the UK
Equality Act (2010)
The UK Equality Act brings together a number of different pieces of legislation to encompass the rights of all people with disabilities. The Act obligates organisations and institutions to:
- Provide employees and service users with disabilities with information in an alternative or accessible format
- Not leave employees and service users with disabilities at a disadvantage
- Provide auxiliary aids (such as screen readers and screen magnifiers) to employees and service users with disabilities
More information about the Equality Act can be found at the news pages of the Dolphin website
Print Disability Copyright Licence
The Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA) offers a 'Print Disability Licence'. The licence provides copyright exemption for readers with visual impairments and dyslexia.
The Print Disability Licence built on the previous 'Copyright for Visually Impaired Persons licence' to provide copyright exemption for people with dyslexia as well as visual impairments.
The Print Disability Licence empowers licence-holding organisations and institutions to convert copyrighted material into an accessible format. These materials can then be circulated to people with vision impairments and dyslexia. Alternative formats include large print, Braille and accessible eBook formats.
Print Disability licences are free and available to organisations and institutions. Application is available through the Copyright Licensing Agency website: www.cla.co.uk (external link).
Read more about the Print Disability license on the Dolphin website
Legislation in the US
In the States, legislation empowering the right to accessible information comes through Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act.
Section 508 is designed to eliminate barriers in information technology to people with disabilities such as visual impairments and dyslexia. Section 508 applies to all Federal agencies when they develop, procure, maintain, or use electronic and information technology.
Under Section 508, agencies must give employees and members of the public with disabilities access to information that is comparable to the access available to others.
More information about Section 508 is available at www.section508.gov (external link)
Legislation in Sweden
Swedish Copyright Law
Swedish Copyright Law permits libraries and organisations officially authorized by the government, to produce published books in an accessible format for lending to print disabled people. This can be done without the permission of authors or publishers.
In addition, the Copyright Law extends to empower anyone to produce Braille copies of published books.
More information about Swedish Copyright law is available on the Swedish Talking Book Service (TPB) website (external link)