Katya Thank you for joining our session this morning. This presentation is dedicated to exploring the development of the OCUL Accessibility Toolkit for Libraries. Before we proceed, I would like to make an accessibility statement with regard to this presentation. For the purposes of making this presentation accessible my colleagues and I will read from our script which will be made available in an accessible WORD along with this Power Point presentation. This script will also include a description of any images, logos or screenshots from our slides. Enlarged copies of this presentation, slides as well as text, are also available at the front of the room. For those of you who were able to join us this morning, please raise your hand if you would like your presenters to speak louder. Feel free to switch your sitting location at any time convenient for you. Before we proceed, I would like to introduce your presenters today: Lisa Gayhart, Digital Communications Services Librarian, ITS, University of TorontoAnika Ervin-Ward, Administrations and Communications Coordinator, OCULKatya Pereyaslavska, Accessibility Librarian, Scholars Portal, OCUL
Katya The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, is a provincial legislation which was passed in 2005. It has two regulations – the Accessibility Standard for Customer Service and the Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulations. The legislation in and of itself is written in a dense language, it’s not extremely accessible to most of us who are not adept at legalese and it takes a few re-reads to make sense of the language.
However, the implications for non-compliance are harsh – $100,000 in daily fines. How can libraries develop best practices, share accessibility expertise and find agreeable solutions to common accessibility barriers has puzzled OCUL members in the last few years. How does the legislation impact you as a reference librarian, a procurement officer or an administrator? What is your ideal role as a member of the UTL or RULA community and how can you contribute to making your campus more accessible?
Katya In 2012 OCUL, in partnership with the University of Toronto, received a grant through the Enabling Change program available through the Ministry of Community and Social Services. This grant was designed to fund the development of a shared accessible texts repository as well as the development of an information toolkit in support of AODA compliance. The toolkit was conceptualized as a valuable tool which could explain our institutional obligations under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA), providing examples of “best practices” in the context of Ontario University libraries.
Katya The ACE project reporting structure, as per the EnAbling Change grant requirements, was the development of an overseeing Steering Committee, which met once a month, an Advisory Committee that only met twice in the pilot year, a repository working group as well as a Toolkit working group.
Our first steps were to work with the Steering Committee to identify and solicit appropriate expertise in the areas of law + copyright, accessibility, procurement, public services and administration.
Shaping an abstract idea to establish project priorities and an effective work plan, the Toolkit Working Group met for the first time at the end of May 2013 to review the working goals and priorities for the coming months.
Katya The concept behind this project was quite general and somewhat abstract so it took a few meetings to fine-tune the idea of the toolkit – who is the audience, what is the content and how should it be organized? All of these considerations needed to be taken with the available timeline in mind – four summer months to get the bulk of the content together before starting an intense process of review followed by endless copy editing. The value of developing a tool which could be versatile, adaptable and sustainable was our top priority.
Katya The 1st meeting of the Toolkit working group took place at the end of May 2013. This was a difficult meeting to coordinate given the volume of the membership. It was agreed at this meeting that the group would be broken into 3 working subgroups, each responsible for each section of the toolkit. Members were asked to select the section they would like to work on based on their expertise and interests. As the result, three groups were formed: public services, law and administration and procurement Each group agreed to meet once every three weeks which meant that the ACE project team has a toolkit meeting every week! These meetings were conducted via the conference line with additional activity taking place between meetings using Google Docs and the Spot Docs wiki. A Chair was assigned to each working group to coordinate the meetings and to communicate on behalf of each group. Four months is not a very long time, especially in the summer months when a lot of library staff take vacation, so tight timeframe meant a faster work pace and creative scheduling to accommodate as many people as possible. In anticipation of this work schedule, an environmental scan was conducted in March and April 2013 in each one of the three designated toolkit areas in order to provide each subgroup with lists of existing projects to start to review.
Katya While the three toolkit areas were identified early, the structure of the toolkit as well as the content were important areas of discussion. The #1 priority was to identify all relevant projects and existing toolkits which could be pulled into a central document. Careful not to duplicate work, this involved discussions with groups such as Council of Ontario Universities Reference Group on Accessibility. Touching base with college representatives as well as other accessibility experts across the province, work on the toolkit involved reaching out to external expertise whenever necessary. Identifying gaps in information available meant that each group needed to develop their own original content such as sample policy language for procurement, a guide for external contractors, among other tools. Highlighting best practices, the toolkit emphasizes the value of considering your own institutional settings to evaluate which aspects of the toolkit and how should be adopted at your institutions.
Katya The toolkit has a relatively simple structure. There is an introduction which identifies how and why this document was developed as well as touching on the AODA timeline and requirements. Following the introduction, there are three sections, each with several subsections, dealing with public services, accessible procurement and law and administration. Given the density of the material found in the latter part, this section is one of the most challenging parts of the toolkit. The final acknowledgements section contains an impressive list of participants and parties consulted. A glossary of terms had been developed by the toolkit working group, however, remains in unpublished format for the moment.
Katya Deciding on an appropriate license for the toolkit was a pretty straightforward decision. The value of developing a tool such as this was reliant on supporting our professional community by providing library staff with useful resources and interpreting a legislation in the context of Ontario academic libraries.
Uses we did consider:
Canadian vs. international use Commercial repurposing Future modification of content as the toolkit transitioned to version 2 Original vs. borrowed content found in the toolkit http://creativecommons.org/choose/
Quote from one group member:
“Given the nature of the content, I think we should strive to make it as open as possible. We want to encourage others to take this material and make use of it, so a more restrictive license doesn’t make sense.” (member of the working group) Content can be adopted as members of the community see fit with one exception being a commercial use
The license which we selected permits all but commercial repurposing so the toolkit is free to be adopted by your institution in any way you see fit. The material in this toolkit should be considered in the context of each institution and adapted accordingly. Excerpts can be adopted, revised or incorporated into institutional guides, policies or any other supporting documentation.
Toolkit for Libraries
Mobilizing Local Expertise to Produce a Consortial Tool
Lisa Gayhart, Digital Communications Services Librarian, ITS, University of Toronto
Anika Ervin-Ward, Administrations and Communications Coordinator, OCUL
Katya Pereyaslavska, Accessibility Librarian, Scholars Portal, OCUL
are you ready?
Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA)
January 1, 2015
Accessible formats and communication supports
Educational libraries - print-based resources
Producers of educational or training material - Textbooks
The AODA has two regulations, the Accessibility Standard for Customer Service
(Customer Service Standard) and The Integrated Accessibility Standards Regulation
Information and Communication Standard (relevant sections to libraries 12, 15 & 18)
January 1, 2014
All new internet websites and web content on those sites going back to January 1, 2012 must conform with
Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level A
Accessible feedback processes
January 1, 2020
Educational libraries - multi-media/digital resources
Producers of educational or training material - Supplementary print materials
January 1, 2021
All internet websites and web content must conform with WCAG 2.0 Level AAA (excluding live
captioning and audio description)
(Nov 2012 - Nov 2013)
EnAbling Change grant = shared digital repository of accessible
texts + an information toolkit
Enabling Change Program, Ontario Ministry
University of Toronto
Repository Working Group
Toolkit Working Groups
…some kind of toolkit
Toolkit purpose – to support OCUL institutions in AODA
-Developing best practices
-Linking to existing projects + tools
-Distilling essential information
-Developing a tool which can continue evolving
First meeting with 17 members from 9 OCUL schools to
establish a work plan and timelines
Division into three sub-groups with three chairs and varied
areas of focus in:
• public services
• law and administration
Establishment of communication practices, frequency of
meetings, and assignment of tasks
Tight timeframe meant faster work pace
Provision of environmental scan documents for focus areas
Accessibility Information Toolkit
Helping OCUL members to prepare and respond to the AODA in three focus
Law & Administration
Direct links to supporting information
Explaining the AODA language and requirements
Offering best practices and sample policy language
Highlighting practices and formats which are inherently inaccessible
Emphasis on collaborative problem-solving
“Engage with OCUL members in support of an
exceptional learning experience for Ontario students”
Keeping groups on track
Working through the summer months
Keeping discussions focused
Ensuring that deliverables meet community needs
Working with distributed groups
Archive of group discussions
• Three sections
- Effectively linking to existing projects
- Section cross-references to avoid content repetition
• Glossary (to be published)
Deciding on appropriate license:
•Canadian vs. international use
•Future modification of content
•Original vs. borrowed content