[tabi] proposed change to the ADA; public comments ending soon

  • From: "Allison and Chip Orange" <acorange@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sun, 20 Jun 2010 16:42:38 -0400

Below is an urgent appeal from the NFB for all blind individuals to comment
on proposed changes to the ADA:

  Dear Federationists:
  As many of you may have already heard, the U.S. Access Board has asked 
  the public for feedback on some proposed changes to the ADA 
  Accessibility Guidelines, Rehabilitation Act, and Telecommunications 
  Act.  Specifically, the Access Board plans to update the standards and 
  accessibility guidelines for electronic and information technology, as 
  well as add kiosks to the ADA Accessibility Guidelines.  We urge you 
  to make your voices heard and e-mail, fax, or post on 
  <http://www.regulations.gov/ www.regulations.gov your comments to 
  these changes, as they have an enormous impact on a blind person's 
  ability to access information.  With a deadline of midnight on Monday, 
  June 21, time is running out for us to influence the board.
  The National Federation of the Blind has been heavily involved with 
  the formulation of these proposed standards and guidelines, but our 
  role is not finished.  It is important that we applaud the Access 
  Board for the changes we support so they are not compromised, and that 
  we highlight where the changes have not gone far enough to ensure full
  More specifically, we have many concerns regarding both the definition 
  of a "kiosk" and the kiosks that are exempted in the proposal.
  In the current proposal, the definition of "kiosk" is limiting.  A 
  kiosk is defined as a self-service unit used only for transportation 
  (ticketing, seat assignments, boarding passes, etc.) or for ordering 
  food.  This definition should be expanded to include other types of 
  services not mentioned, as kiosks are increasingly replacing customer 
  service personnel in a wide range of services, including voting, jury 
  service payments, and health care.  The current definition is silent 
  on whether a unit used for these services would be considered a kiosk, 
  and also does not include visual display systems that are used solely 
  for displaying information to users.  Kiosks should have a 
  comprehensive definition that leaves room for innovative ways kiosks 
  may be incorporated into our society and eliminates any future debate 
  over whether a different service is covered under the law and what
standards may apply.
  In addition, the two exemptions for kiosks in the proposal will not 
  ensure total accessibility.  First, closed systems are exempted to 
  comply with 302.  This means a closed system does not have to provide 
  spoken output, since it would not be required to be usable with "only 
  the attachment of a personal headset."  Under this assumption, there 
  is no requirement for these systems to be accessible.  Second, drive-up
kiosks are exempted.
  Although people with certain disabilities are not drivers, they are 
  all passengers who may encounter a drive-up kiosk; and exempting 
  drive-up units is discriminatory to a disabled passenger.  The NFB 
  encourages the board to ensure that all kiosks be required to be
  These comments and others were compiled and formally submitted by the 
  NFB to the Access Board.  Now it is time for our members to make a 
  statement and emphasize our concerns regarding kiosks.  Your comments 
  can be short--the act of sending in feedback is more important than 
  the length of your remarks.  You could say something as simple as "I 
  think the definition of kiosks is too limited.  Please expand the 
  definition and remove the exemptions."  You could also say "I think 
  the definition of kiosks should be expanded and all exemptions removed 
  to ensure full accessibility."  You can call Tim Creagan at (202) 
  272-0016, e-mail your thoughts to 
  <mailto:ictrule@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx ictrule@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx with 
  "2010-1" in the subject line, fax to (202) 272-0081, or post your 
  comments on <http://www.regulations.gov/ www.regulations.gov.  To view 
  the full draft, visit
  If you need more information, please contact Lauren McLarney at (410) 
  659-9314, extension 2207.
  Joanne Wilson
  Executive Director, Affiliate Action

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