Amplify Your Impact: Don't Be a Reference "Tool": How to Use Internal Marketing to Build Staff Competencies in the Age of Inclusive Libraries

Katya Pereyaslavska, Corinne Abba


Inclusivity is a topic which is coming to the fore in many institutions, and libraries are no exception. To many of us, this may be a new area and could be somewhat daunting to begin to address. The authors provide some background, resources, and ideas to start to make your library inclusive, accessible, and welcoming to all patrons.—Editors

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AODA refers to the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, ADA to Americans with Disabilities Act, UDL to Universal Design for Learning, Section 508 to the amendment made to the United States’ Rehabilitation Act that covers removing barriers to information technology, VPAT to Voluntary Product Accessibility Template, and WCAG to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines.

Unless otherwise noted, all images are taken from The Noun Project, “ Blind” by Jordan Delcros; “Include” by James Keuning; “Head In The Clouds” by Luis Prado; “Public Information” Public domain image; “Presentation” by Garrett Knoll; “Document Text” by Thomas Helbig; “Data” by Wilson Joseph; “Media” by Jamison Wieser; “Magnifying Glass” by Boudewijn Mijnlieff; “Braille” Public domain image; “Mouse” by Mahmudxon; “Chat” Public domain image; “Speaker” by Harold Kim; “Library” by Pieter J. Smits; “Sign Language” Public domain image; “Resource” by Gilbert Bages; “Report” by Grant Fisher; “Gears” by Hubert Orlik–Grzesik.

Jutta Treviranus, “Superconference” (presentation, Ontario Library Association, 2014).

See Trenton Schulz and Kristin Skeide Fuglerud, “Creating Personas with Disabilities,” in Computers Helping People with Special Needs Lecture Notes in Computer Science 7383 (2012): 145–52.

See Accessibility Standard for Customer Service: Employer Handbook,

RUSA Task Force on Professional Competencies, “Professional Competencies for Reference and User Services Librarians,” approved by the RUSA Board of Directors, January 26, 2003,

Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, S.O. 2005, c.11 (AODA) (2005).

Ontario Human Rights Code, R.S.O. 1990, c. H.19.

Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990. Public Law 101-336. 108th Congress, 2nd session (July 26, 1990).

This guide has been adapted from Kate Marczynski, “Adaptive Technology: Quick Guide for LLC Staff,” created for George Brown College Library Learning Commons, 2012.

“Refreshable Braille Displays,” American Foundation for the Blind, 2014, accessed July 14, 2015,

“Universal Symbol for Closed Captioning,” WGBH, logo created by Jack Foley, accessed June 28, 2015,

Olga Dosis, “Ontario Colleges’ AODA Procurement Toolkit” (George Brown College, Diversity, Equity, Human Rights Services, January 2014),

See Michael R. Woodford et al., “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Ally Training Programs on Campus: Current Variations and Future Directions,” Journal of College Student Development 55, no. 3 (2014): 317–22.



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