Blind Turkish Pop Star Advocates for Talking ATMs and POS devices

[quote from=”CNN News article on blind Turkish pop star Metin Senturk”]Technological innovations are also widening access to some everyday activities, such as banking. Earlier this month, Turkey’s Yapi Kredi bank launched an ATM which talks visually-impaired customers through their transactions. It also rolled out point of sale machines that act in a similar manner.[/quote]On December 17, 2010, CNN ran the story reprinted here about Turkish pop star Metin Senturk who is blind. Mr. Senturk, who holds the Guinness record as the world’s fastest blind driver, started a disability rights organization in Turkey, and mentions disability issues on his weekly national television show. Another aspect of disability advocacy in Turkey? As explained more fully in the article here, the leading bank in Turkey rolled out its first Talking ATM on December 3, 2010. Talking Point of Sale devices have also been introduced. Read more…

New United States Talking ATM Regulations Now On Line

The United States Department of Justice has now made the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design available on line. The Standards were included in the revised ADA regulations announced by the Department in September, 2010, but the 257 page document was not on line until November 15, 2010. The Standards include, for the first time, detailed requirements for Talking ATMs. Read more…

Have You checked your ACCESSIBLE Credit Reports?

The three major credit reporting companies in the United States have been making free credit reports accessible for almost two years. As the holiday season approaches it is a great time to review your report — in Braille, Large Print or audio format, or on the web in an accessible on-line format. Every United States citizen is entitled to one free report every twelve months from each of the three companies: Equifax, Experian and Trans Union. The three reports can be requested at the same time, or at different times over a twelve month period. This post has details about how to request free accessible credit reports. Read more…

Mindful Lawyers: First Meditation Conference for Lawyers

Close to 200 lawyers, judges and law students gathered at the University of California Berkeley Law School this past weekend for the first ever Mindful Lawyer Conference. The goal? To help the legal profession explore how contemplative practice — the meditative perspective — can benefit not just individual lawyers but anyone touched by the legal system, and even the system itself. Read more…

MLB: On-Line Accessibility During the World Series

As regular readers of LFLegal know, Major League Baseball (MLB) has shown great commitment to web site accessibility throughout the 2010 season. As the World Series begins this week, the American Council of the Blind (ACB) and its affiliates in Massachusetts and California continue to work with MLB on the accessibility of mlb.com and the team sites. The feedback of baseball fans with visual impairments is essential to that effort. Read more…

Accessibility Lawsuit Filed Against JetBlue Airways

The California Council of the Blind and three California residents with visual impairments have filed a lawsuit against JetBlue Airways in Federal Court for the Northern District of California. The lawsuit alleges that JetBlue has violated California law by maintaining a website and operating airport check-in kiosks that are inaccessible to individuals with visual impairments. The lawsuit is based on three California laws: the Unruh Act, the California Disabled Persons Act, and the California Unfair Competition Law. Read more…

White House Signing Ceremony for 21st Century Communications Act

On Friday, October 8, 2010, President Obama is scheduled to sign the Twenty First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act. This historic event is the result of years of dedicated advocacy by a broad coalition of disability rights organizations that work together as COAT – the coaltion of Organizations for Accessible Technology. Disability rights leaders will be on hand to witness the signing ceremony. Read more…

Accessible Websites, One Small Law Firm, and the U.S. Department of Justice

Can a small law firm’s website help the United States Department of Justice in its web accessibility rulemaking process? When the website — LFLegal.com — has been designed to meet Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, I think the answer is yes. In its July 26, 2010 Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking about web accessibility, the United States Department of Justice asks several questions about how web accessibility regulations might affect small businesses. This post provides information about the accessibility of this law firm’s (a small business) website, and is intended as a resource for individuals and organizations preparing comments in response to the DOJ ANPRM. Read more…

Blind Advocacy for Accessible Technology Has Rich California History

October 10 – 16, 2010, has been designated by the California legislature as the state’s first ever “Disability History Week.” The official designation is the result of disability community advocacy efforts spearheaded by “Youth Organizing! Disabled and Proud”, a project of the the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers. This historic week provides a welcomed opportunity to look at the history made by blind advocates and their organizations in California as part of the on-going push for accessible technology. Read more…

Revised ADA Regulations (Finally) Include Detailed Talking ATM Requirements

On September 15, 2010, the United States Department of Justice published, in the Federal Register, its revised rules implementing the Americans with Disabilities Act. Official publication is one of the last steps on a very long road leading to new ADA regulations for both public and private entities on a diverse set of issues including Talking ATMs, ticketing for accessible seating, effective communication, service animals and more. The next steps? The new rules take effect on March 15, 2011 – six months after publication in the Federal Register. Compliance with the new 2010 Standards for Accessible Design (revising what is often erroneously referred to as ADAAG), is required as of March, 2012. Read more…