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Disabled Writers & Accessibility

Last added to Feb. 5/21 by Sylvia Skene, last checked and updated May 13, 2022, by Wendy Habif, Langara College Library & Information Technology practicum student.

The Basics

  • Leary, Alaina. “Why The Publishing Industry Can’t Get Disability Right.” The Establishment – Medium, Nov. 17, 2016. Discussion of why there are not enough portrayals of disability in stories published by writers and why it is important for the publishing industry to be more inclusive. Read Article
  • Leary, Alaina. “Why The Publishing Industry Needs To Be More Inclusive Of Autistic Disabled People.” Bustle, Jan. 10, 2018. Read Article

A Deeper Dive

  • Eakes, Laurie Alice. “Yes, Blind People Read Books. We Write Them, Too.” HuffPost, Sep. 17, 2018. Read Article
  • Griffith, Nicola. “Rewriting the Old Disability Script.” The New York Times, Nov. 14, 2018. Read Article. New York Times limits free articles; if you are unable to access this directly, check with your library to see if they offer access.
  • Leduc, Amanda. “What the Literary World Gets Wrong About Accessibility.” Literary Hub, Mar. 12, 2020. Read Article
  • Lu, Alex. “What Does It Mean to Be a Disabled Writer? Discussing writing, publishing, and disability with Keah Brown, Esmé Weijun Wang, and Jillian Weise.” Electric Literature, May 7, 2018. Read Article
  • Perry, David. “Job Discrimination in Plain Print.” Al-Jazeera America, Feb. 10, 2016. Raising awareness and questions regarding anti-disability clauses in job descriptions. Read Article
  • Dahle, Angela Peña. “Deaf Authors Talk about Imagination and Creativity.” School Library Journal. Visit Site 
  • “About Deaf Interpreting.” Canadian Hearing Services, 6 Apr. 2021. Canadian Hearing Services offers support for people of all ages who are Deaf and hard of hearing. Visit Site
  • “Canadian Association of the Deaf.” Canadian Association of the Deaf – Association Des Sourds Du Canada. Visit Site
  • “Deaf Culture Centre”, 18 Feb. 2022, Art gallery featuring Deaf artists’ artwork. Visit Site

Resources

We often work with Deaf artists and they remind us often that it is always best practice to hire interpreters through Deaf-owned booking services. The fees are higher but you are supporting Deaf employees and business owners and engaging their knowledge of what will be best for your interpreting needs.

  • Frontier Accessibility. Canadian National Institute for the Blind. Offers website accessibility audits. Visit Digital and Website Webpage
  • “Improving the Accessibility of Your Mainstream Digital Content.” Inclusive Publishing. Read Article
  • “Introduction to Inclusive Publishing.” Inclusive Publishing. Read Article
  • Canadian Website Accessibility Guidelines in 2022 – Hostingcanada.org. The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (WCAG 2.0) is a set of standards meant to help web developers and design technicians incorporate accessibility points for disabled access to content. Visit Site
  • Wavefront Centre for Communication Accessibility. BC-based organization that offers assistance with plain-language documents. Accessed Feb. 5/21. Visit Site
  • W3C. “Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.1.” Visit Site (Current Standards) | Read 2.2 Working Draft | Read 3.0 Working Draft
  • “Canadian Association of Sign Language Interpreters.” CASLI, Visit Site
  • “Hearing Like Me.” Hearing Loss Community, 15 Apr. 2022, Visit Site
  • “Deaf Spectrum”, established in 2015, is one of Canada’s largest leading Deaf Arts Businesses, Visit Site
  • “DeafBC”, News on current events in the BC Deaf community Visit Site
  • Auclair, Kim. “Six Steps to Better Adapt your Business to Deaf or Hearing-Impaired Customers.” Blogue Nergir, Read Article

Guides

  • The DAISY Consortium: Ensures accessibility for people with print disabilities in both specialist and mainstream formats. Visit Site
  • Duyvis, Corinne and Kayla Whaley. “Introduction to Disability Terminology.” Disability in Kidlit, Jul. 8, 2016. Read Article
  • “Guidelines for Writing About People with Disabilities”. ADA National Network. Guidelines for inclusive language writing from the National Network of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Read Article
  • Karapita, Mike. “Making Accessible Media: Inclusive Language Guide.” Humber, 2017. Canadian-style guide for inclusive language. Glossary of current terminology is included. Read Guide
  • National Network of Equitable Library Services (NNELS): Information for Publishers and Authors. NNELS is a Canadian public library repository specializing in creating accessible content for individuals with print disability. Visit Site
  • Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI): WAI provides additional resources and guidelines for web accessibility. Visit Site

More Resources