This blog represents most of the newspaper columns (appearing in various Colorado Community Newspapers and Yourhub.com) written by me, James LaRue, during the time in which I was the director of the Douglas County Libraries in Douglas County, Colorado. (Some columns are missing, due to my own filing errors.) This blog covers the time period from April 11, 1990 to January 12, 2012.

Unless I say so, the views expressed here are mine and mine alone. They may be quoted elsewhere, so long as you give attribution. The dates are (at least according my records) the dates of publication in one of the above print newspapers.

The blog archive (web view) is in chronological order. The display of entries, below, seems to be in reverse order, new to old.

All of the mistakes are of course my own responsibility.

Wednesday, August 22, 1990

August 22, 1990 - blind and physically handicapped

There are about half a million legally blind people in the United States, about 1.5 million who can't read a newspaper without magnification, and approximately 10 million people with irreversibly impaired vision. World-wide, about 23 million people qualify as "blind," although in fact most of these people have some residual, usable sight.

In the United States, the leading cause of blindness comes down to aging -- everything from muscular degeneration to cataracts to withering of the optic nerve.

For some people, even reading books with large type becomes difficult. But the Library of Congress' Talking Books program offers a solution. Here in Colorado, the program is administered by the Colorado State Library Services for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. How does it work? If you suffer from a visual or physical impairment that prevents you from reading standard print, even if the impairment is temporary, you can choose books in Braille, in large print, on cassette tape, and/or on record. There is no cost for the service. The Colorado State Library provides you with the tape and record players and ships you both the catalogs and the materials through the regular mail. When you're done with the books, tapes or records you just mail them back, again at no charge.
The program lets you pick romances, mysteries, Westerns, non- fiction and magazines. Materials are available in several languages, including Spanish. The materials are current -- right off the best-seller lists.

Starting next week, the Castle Rock, Parker, and Oakes Mill branches of the Douglas County Public Library System will display some promotional materials for the program. We will also have a deposit collection of audio-cassettes for people already signed up for Talking Books. If you've begun to have trouble reading the books and magazines you'd like to read, or you know someone having trouble, maybe you should stop by or call us. We will be happy to describe in detail how the program works and demonstrate the equipment.

There are three ways to register for the program. We can sign you up right at one of our branches. Or, you can write the Colorado State Library Services for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (131 Sherman Street, Denver CO 80203) or call them at 1-800-332-5852. They will send you the application form.

Being "blind" doesn't have to limit your world. Just as there's more than one kind of reader, there's more than one kind of book. Reading is for everyone. You see?

No comments:

Post a Comment