Event captioning on mobile devices in some US venues, but not enough

What a fantastic idea, putting the technology most of us already have to real use–assistive technology for all. Universal design of products allows for multiple uses in different scenarios. I love it! And I cannot believe it is not used in more venues! I urge all venues to adopt this simple technology that will benefit more of the population then you realize.

Screenshot of Fancaption.com homepage.

FanCaption.com

FanConneX also offers our in-venue closed captioning of the PA announcer for the hearing impaired. It’s a simple, innovative way for venues to enhance the experience of their hearing impaired fans. It’s doesn’t require video board space or a separate video board, but works on web-enabled handheld devices.

CCM Professor Tells Stutterer Not to Speak in Class

This is an ADA no-no for post-secondary instructors! There are better ways to limit class discussion than telling a stuttering student not to speak. Professor’s Response to a Stutterer – Don’t Speak – NYTimes.com

Students Complain DS Are Not Accessible

Yesterday I stumbled across this post from a college student regarding disability services not really being accessible and it really got me thinking…

My reply to her was cut short due to spacing restrictions: “As a disability services specialist at a community college, I understand your arguments, but I don’t think you understand the laws we work under. I struggle on a regular basis to get the faculty & staff to understand my role. I believe I understand where you are coming from b/c I used to teach high school special needs for 8 years. Students do best when they self-advocate with instructors, but good DSS folk should be there to help support you in your self-advocacy.”

Inclusion Of Students With Disabilities In Higher Education

FYI…

Inclusion Of Students With Disabilities In Higher Education: Performance And Participation In Student’s Experiences To expand knowledge on the accessibility of higher education to students with disabilities, the study compared 170 such students in higher education institutions in Israel with 156 students without disabilities for formal achievements and overall participation in higher education. Results revealed that academic achievements of students with disabilities were almost as high as those of students without disabilities, and overall students’ experiences were similar. But the two groups of students differed in areas of experiences, as did students with various disabilities among themselves. Analysis of the data indicates that students with disabilities invested more time to meet the demands of their studies, participated in fewer social and extra-curricular activities, and used computers and information technology less. Higher education institutes still have a long way to go to reduce the gap in social inclusion of students with disabilities and to adjust academic standards for their needs.

ADA Amendments Act and Post-Secondary Education

The ADA Amendments Act and Post-Secondary Education Webinar hosted by the Southwest ADA Center on Friday, April 15, 2011, 2:00 PM Central Time (3:00 PM Eastern)

Topics Covered During This Session Include:

  • Overview of rights and responsibilities
  • Brief look at regulatory changes – Program Accessibility, Physical accessibility (i.e.: Dormitories, Libraries, recreational & administrative areas, etc.)
  • Typical barriers and solutions
  • Impacts on employment within Post-Secondary education and beyond

Link to this webinar and download accompanying materials

Beware the Ides of March! New ADA Regulations in Effect TODAY!

Important changes to the ADA Title II and Title III regulations are in effect starting March 15, 2011. Title II applies to state and local governments. Title III applies to the private sector: stores, hotels, day care centers, non-profit organizations, medical providers, etc. Most of the changes in the two regulations are the same.

What are the changes?

Service Animals:
The definition of service animals now only includes dogs. Other animals, whether wild or domestic, do not qualify as service animals. Dogs must be individually trained to do work or perform tasks. Dogs that are not trained to perform tasks that mitigate the effects of a disability, including dogs that are used purely for emotional support, are not service animals. The regulations also clarify that the animal must be under the handler’s control at all times, that the handler is responsible for the animal’s care and what questions can and can’t be asked a person indicates his or her dog is a service animal.

Miniature Horses
Although not under the definition of service animals, the regulations permit the use of trained miniature horses as alternatives to dogs, where appropriate. Assessment factors to determine appropriateness of the use of miniature horses include the type, size, and weight of the miniature horse; whether the facility can accommodate these features; whether the handler has sufficient control of the miniature horse; whether the miniature horse is housebroken; and whether the miniature horse’s presence in a specific facility compromises legitimate safety requirements that are necessary for safe operation.

Wheelchairs and Other Power-Driven Mobility Devices:
The regulations distinguish wheelchairs and “other power-driven mobility devices” (OPDMDs). OPDMDs are mobility devices not designed for people with disabilities, but which are often used by people with disabilities (such as the Segway). Wheelchairs must be permitted in all areas open to pedestrian use. OPDMDs must be permitted unless their use would fundamentally alter programs, services, or activities; create a direct threat or create a safety hazard.

Ticketing (tickets to sporting events, concerts, theater, etc.):
Tickets for accessible seating must be available to purchase during the same hours; during the same stages of ticket sales (pre-sales, promotions, lotteries, wait-lists, and general sales) and through the same methods of distribution (phone, in person, internet, third party) as tickets for non-accessible seating. The regulations also include requirements concerning information about the location and availability of accessible seating, hold and release of accessible seating to persons with out disabilities, prevention of the fraudulent purchase of accessible seating, and the ability to purchase multiple tickets when buying accessible seating.

Effective Communication:
The regulations include video remote interpreting (VRI) services as a type of auxiliary aid that may be used to provide effective communication. To ensure that VRI is effective, the regulations include performance standards for VRI and requires training for users of the technology. The regulations state that a minor child may not be used to interpret or facilitate communication except under emergency situations.

More ADA Title II and Title III regulations changes go into effect next year on March 15, 2012.

Additional information about Title II changes is available here

Additional information about Title III changes is available here

Please contact the Northeast ADA Center with questions by sending an email or call 800-949-4232 voice/TTY.