Serving Patrons with Disabilities: Perspectives and Insights from People with Disabilities

ALA Editions Feb. 2023. 88p. ed. by Kodi Laskin. ISBN 9780838937310. pap. $39.99. PRO MEDIA
In theory, libraries are places where information should be available to everyone. The 1990 ratification of the Americans with Disabilities Act made way for improvements to the quality of access in public spaces, but unfortunately, many public buildings, including libraries, are still not fully accessible. While other guides to providing services and accommodations for individuals with disabilities are available, this book, edited by Laskin, a library assistant and service-animal handler, offers simple, up-to-date information tailored to library professionals. Laskin acknowledges that the process of making a library accessible can be daunting, but the tools and advice contained within this book can serve as a support. The book’s six chapters cover different approaches and best practices when working with patrons who have different needs, including people who employ service animals, mobility aids, or speech-assistive technology; people with low vision or hearing loss; and people with learning differences. Throughout the book, each contributor offers hands-on suggestions and shares lessons and insights from people with disabilities.
VERDICT Although geared to library workers, this powerful and effective book can be used by anyone working with the public. Required reading for all library professionals.
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