[Colorado-talk] Fw: Requesting Braille titles

Everett Gavel everett at everettgavel.com
Tue Feb 26 02:02:50 UTC 2013

Hello Folks,

Below is a letter I sent off today, in response to our local Colorado Springs library telling me, "Sorry, but we have no Braille books." ...and my response. Please read below and, if you feel like it, I urge you to contact your own library branches in your neighborhoods -- no matter where you are in Colorado -- and request some Braille books, as well. Please let your local library know that Braille books need not only be found in a Talking Book Library. Let them know there is some interest, if there is. 

Thank you for reading below, whether you choose to go any further or not. 

If You Do Take Action -- May God Bless Your Efforts!

----- Original Message ----- 
From: Everett Gavel 
To: Bursell, Richard 
Sent: Monday, February 25, 2013 4:36 PM
Subject: Re: Requesting Braille titles

Hello Mr. Bursell,

Thank you for e-mailing me. However, your answer is unacceptable. 

My in-person request and 15-minute discussion with either you or someone else, I can't currently recall his name, the day I took my time to come in and personally request a few specific titles in braille, were not just to see if you had them available. I already know you don't. 

My request -- as a taxpayer and citizen of Colorado and resident of Colorado Springs -- was to make sure you got them. 

Telling me to go to the Talking Book Library is slightly akin to asking a black person to use a separate bathroom. Just because the other bathroom may be there does not mean that's the only bathroom I should be able to use. 

Please make no mistake about it. Blind people often (not always, but often) pay taxes too. Additionally, I vote for the funding (or not) of my public library system. 
I even happen to be a member of the local Friends of the Library organization as well, for what it's worth. I have every right to be able to find accessible materials in your facility, just like anyone else -- especially those who contribute to its welfare. 

Yes, I can use the books on varying media such as CD, DVD, etc., but just as I fight for literacy among sighted children, I continue fighting for literacy among blinded children as well. And just as print is necessary for literacy, as opposed to merely listening to words, BRAILLE is necessary for literacy and competency among blind kids. 

When I recently took the time and came into your facility, as well as when another blind library member I am aware of recently did the same, we did not ask, and are not asking if you happen to have such titles available in Braille. We knew you did not yet have them. Rather, as a contributing citizen in my community, I am asking, urging, requesting, and will continue to fight for, at least a small percentage of MY communities' libraries to have some smittance of Braille available for our communities' blind children and blind adults who prefer reading in that format. Braille should not be an oddity, but needs to be side-by-side with print. As long as braille continues to seem like an oddity, so will blind people themselves. 

Not to mention the tens of millions of Baby Boomers who are expected to lose significant vision in the coming decades. Make no mistake about it, these seniors are being taught braille in order to REMAIN competent with their reading skills. When a senior is unable to continue reading normal print, and they cannot read braille and can only partake of the community's or world's offerings by listening to audio formats -- they are functionally illiterate at that point in time. 

Our community organizations such as the Independence Center (www.csic.org) and the National Federation of the Blind (www.nfbco.org) are working to help the blind and visually impaired remain or become literate. The CS public library system can do its part by putting at least SOME Braille on its shelves.

So, I will now restate my request to get any or all (and when possible, even more) of the following titles in Braille -- and you can check with the following organizations for possible purchase if you currently have no real idea where to start. Thank you for your help in fulfilling this rather simple request: 

Possible Titles: 
- The Harry Potter series. 
- The Lord of the Rings series. 
- The Narnia series (The Lion, the Witch, & the Wardrobe, etc.) 
~ OR ~ 
- Any other "typical books you'd get for sighted children (Thinking them truly worth reading). 

Possible Organizations to Purchase Braille Books from: 
- www.aph.org (American Printing House) 
- www.seedlings.org (Seedlings -- offering kids' books in both print/braille in 1) 
- www.nfb.org (National Federation of the Blind) 
- www.afb.org (American Foundation for the Blind) 

Strive on, Mr. Bursell, and thank you for your help with this request. 


Everett Gavel
Successful Adaptations, llc
"Achieving Success -- Through Better Access"
everettg at successfuladaptations.com
(719) 510-8017
Skype: successful_adaptations


  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Bursell, Richard 
  To: everett at everettgavel.com 
  Sent: Monday, February 25, 2013 12:06 PM
  Subject: Requesting Braille titles

  Dear Mr. Gavel:

The Pikes Peak Library does not have the titles you requested in Braille.  You might consider contacting the Colorado Talking Book Library to see what is available in their collections at:  http://www.cde.state.co.us/ctbl/library/tblibpolicies.htm

You could also consider calling them at:  I303-727-9277 or toll free in state at 800-685-2136.


  Richard A. Bursell
  Public Services Administration
  Pikes Peak Library District
  Ph. 719-531-6333 ext. 2301
  "We can work it out." The Beatles, 1965.

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