Accessibility News February 18,2012 Update

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In this Issue

*Providing Emergency and Public Safety Information for People With Disabilities Guide
*CRTC Tests 911 Texting for Hearing and Speech Impaired
*How Might We Design an Accessible Election Experience for Everyone?
*Toronto Police Need to Improve the Way They Deal With Mentally Ill People
*Windows 8 adds Help for Visually Impaired, Physically Challenged
*People are Last at George Pearson Centre

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ARTICLES:

Providing Emergency and Public Safety Information for People With Disabilities Guide

Public safety information can help keep people safe when an emergency happens. Ontario’s Accessibility Standard for Information and Communications can help you do that by making your emergency and public safety information accessible to people with disabilities. This guide will help you.

Read more at
http://www.aoda.ca/?p=1671#appendix

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CRTC Tests 911 Texting for Hearing and Speech Impaired

People with speech and hearing disabilities will soon be able to communicate with 911 services via text messages.

During the three-month pilot project announced by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, volunteers registered with their phone provider will make test phone calls to 911, and the dispatcher will respond with a text message to the user’s cellphone. The user can then text their situation back to the dispatcher.

Read more at
http://www.accessibilitynewsinternational.com/?p=2478

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How Might We Design an Accessible Election Experience for Everyone?

We are calling on everyone, including voters, non-voters, election officials, people with disabilities, designers, engineers, and students, to help us make elections more accessible for everyone.

We invite you to join us in this challenge.

Read more at
http://www.openideo.com/open/voting/brief.html

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Toronto Police Need to Improve the Way They Deal With Mentally Ill People

After Toronto police fatally shot a mentally ill man last week, advocates for the mentally handicapped are understandably nervous. Suggestions by the city’s deputy police chief that provincial law be changed to let front-line officers use Tasers are even more concerning. Especially after the death of a confused man who died after being Tasered by an RCMP officer at Vancouver airport in 2007.

There has been a sad string of fatalities involving Toronto police and mentally ill people. In August, a man died after mistakenly being tackled by two police officers. In October, a North York woman with a history of mental illness was shot dead by police after brandishing a knife outside her home. Police officials point out that incidents like these have declined over the years: only 63 people were injured or killed after two million calls for service. But despite commitments from the very top of the force, tragedies keep happening.

Read more at
http://www.accessibilitynews.ca/?p=2192

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Windows 8 adds Help for Visually Impaired, Physically Challenged

Accessibility features expanded, made easier to insert in applications

Windows 8 beefs up accessibility features that enable those who are blind, nearsighted, hard-of-hearing and who have mobility impairments to navigate PCs.

Read more at
http://www.accessibilitynewsinternational.com/?p=2473

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People are Last at George Pearson Centre

This is part one of a two-part series.
By Paul Caune and Victor Schwartzman

Late last year one of Canada’s health authorities proved yet again that people with disabilities do not have a practical way to enforce their civil rights.

The George Pearson Centre is a sixty year old nursing home in Vancouver, British Columbia, for adults with disabilities. On November 8, 2011, two top executives of the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority (VCH) met with residents of the institution. The meeting was recorded with the knowledge of the participants.

Read more at
http://www.accessibilitynewsinternational.com/?p=2470

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